Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Annie Lennox: Diva [Arista, 1992]
The honorable Timothy White avers, "Her vocals have never felt performed," which those of us who don't commune regularly with the stars can take as a sign that the guy's been in show business too long. It's our belief that Ms. Lennox's vocals have never felt anything but performed--and that this palpably phony quality was her chief charm even though it meant that at her most nuevo wavo she was destined to turn conventional pop singer sooner or later. So here she goes normal, if that's what you call somebody who emotes banalities to her baby daughter loud enough to wake the disco: "precious little angel . . . [percolating bass] . . . bundle full of love . . . drowned in my own tears . . . [cool trumpet solo] . . . gift from heaven . . ." Thank your maker she fades it instead of going out on a high note. And give Dave Stewart this: he kept her dishonest. C+