Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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  • Quarterflash [Geffen, 1981] B

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Quarterflash [Geffen, 1981]
This Seattle sextet makes music for stewardesses if ever there was such a thing, and if you think I'm being condescending that's your problem--I'm awed. What a complex artifact! The lyrics Marv Ross writes for wife Rindy, who sings like a cross between Stevie Nicks and Olivia Newton-John and does clarinet impersonations on the saxophone, are all about how love doesn't last, especially with "Valerie," Rindy's benefactor and then some during an ill-advised stint in art school. And the band, which boasts chops beyond tight, steals only from the masters--Steely Dan chords and guitars, Steve Stills and Joni Mitchell vocalisms, Fleetwood Mac ambience, and of course that soupçon of "Baker Street." Inspirational Verse, I swear: "Hallelujah, Friday's here/The week is long for the insincere." B