Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Tracey Ullman

  • You Broke My Heart in 17 Places [MCA, 1984] B+

Consumer Guide Reviews:

You Broke My Heart in 17 Places [MCA, 1984]
Unlike most of her cocharting cofemales, Ullman has undertaken a conscious genre exercise--she plays girl-group tradition for naive if not dumb passivity. The songs new and old are tuneful and right, the production exquisitely not-quite-schlocky, but just-compare her "Bobby's Girl" to Marcie Blaine's original--Ullman sings with too much force and skill to make the conceit convincing. On the other hand, it's probably her musical conscience that saves the project from unmitigated "ironic" condescension. "They Don't Know" did hit at face value, after all. B+