Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

The Everly Brothers: This Is the Everly Brothers [Music Club, 1996]
Before they moved to Warners, which has never flattered their modest gift with the modest collection it deserves (although the 1968 concept album Roots is sweet), Cadence made hay off the teen classics now hawked by half a dozen reissue labels (including Rhino, where they begin an endless box). All of the key moments are on this collection, which lists for $10, and while some may prefer the $20, 31-cut Laserlight triple-CD, I find that too soon their harmonies start sounding neat rather than sharp. This is their very best, epitomizing a strain of pubescence that can't be trusted to repress its horniness past the end of the song. To their elders they're always polite. With their peers they fuss, fight, and--in their all-they-have-to-do-is-dreams--fuck around. A