Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Antone's Women: Bringing You the Best in Blues [Antone's, 1992]
Eight gals whose natural habitat is the blues bar in all its beery, bedenimed isolation--the malest enclave this side of the men's locker room. Individually they're not immune to the rowdy conservatism that shackles all so-called house-rockin' music, but together they constitute a singular sisterhood: tough and independent, yet--with guidance from the label's cofounder, unflappable Austin oldtimer Angela Strehli--willing to help each other hoe that hard row. The songwriting is high generic, which in bar blues takes effort, and this sampler isn't just a wheat-from-chaff job. It highlights facets of a collective sensibility--earnest or cynical or sluttish or loving or proud, it's always of its world. B+