Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Carlos Santana

  • Havana Moon [Columbia, 1983] B+

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Consumer Guide Reviews:

Havana Moon [Columbia, 1983]
Like Chuck Berry's, Santana's lexicon of licks has never guaranteed entertaining improvisation, and the square rhythms of his one-shot roots rock & roll & band (MG's and Thunderbirds converge on Muscle Shoals) flatter his guitar as aptly as any funkbeat. You'll still find solo atmospherics here, but at least this time they take after Booker T. rather than Sri C. And though the vocals go to damn near everybody but Carlos himself--Booker T., Kim Wilson, Carlos's dad, even Greg Walker, heretofore the finest singer ever to drop in on him--it's Willie Nelson who shows us what for, on a country tune that's the one cut on the album which completely transcends revivalism. B+