Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Julian Lennon

  • Valotte [Atlantic, 1984] C
  • The Secret Value of Daydreaming [Atlantic, 1986] D+

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Valotte [Atlantic, 1984]
I'd hoped to let this one die in dignified silence--figured you couldn't blame the boy for trying. But as it's now sold over 500,000 RIAA-certified copies, discretion is useless. Anyway, I do blame him for trying. Aside from the eerie vocal resemblance, this is bland professional pop of little distinction and less necessity--tuneful at times, tastefully produced of course, and with no discernible reason for being, more Frank Sinatra Jr. than (even) Hank Williams Jr. Julian seems well brought up, a credit to his long-suffering mom. I suggest he invest his royalties in medical school--or else, if he's so keen on not wasting his genetic heritage, launch a career in the visual arts. C

The Secret Value of Daydreaming [Atlantic, 1986]
Just when you thought he couldn't get any worse he decides he has a right to be doing this, thus surrendering the aura of vulnerability that was Valotte's only spiritual virtue. And when this one stiffs I bet he comes up with a song about "people who criticize." D+

Further Notes:

Everything Rocks and Nothing Ever Dies [1990s]