Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

Consumer Guide:
  User's Guide
  Grades 1990-
  Grades 1969-89
  And It Don't Stop
  Book Reports
  Is It Still Good to Ya?
  Going Into the City
  Consumer Guide: 90s
  Grown Up All Wrong
  Consumer Guide: 80s
  Consumer Guide: 70s
  Any Old Way You Choose It
  Don't Stop 'til You Get Enough
Xgau Sez
  And It Don't Stop
  CG Columns
  Rock&Roll& [new]
  Rock&Roll& [old]
  Music Essays
  Music Reviews
  Book Reviews
  NAJP Blog
  Rolling Stone
  Video Reviews
  Pazz & Jop
Web Site:
  Site Map
  What's New?
Carola Dibbell:
  Carola's Website
CG Search:
Google Search:

Everything but the Girl

  • Walking Wounded [Atlantic, 1996] Neither

Further Notes:

New Wave [1980s]

Subjects for Further Research [1990s]: Tracey Thorn has always been one of those singers who sounded dandy on other people's records, notably Massive Attack's. Her diffident quietude is designed for new sophisticates, meaning not me, and linked to Ben Watt's lounge jazz once removed she always seemed to warrant that all-purpose what-me-worry dis, boring. Nor did things improve when Watt took cues from Massive Attack and went techno; although he was always understated about it, his affinities were clearly with jungle's soundtrack and fusion tendencies. I decided to get down to cases with these two over 1999's well-regarded Temperamental. But having duly noted that after multiple plays I still had no idea what the songs were about, I sat down with the lyric sheet and realized I'd been missing something--on Temperamental, at least, Thorn's alienated single woman of no special status alone in the city is chillingly and compassionately observed (or is that experienced?). I shouldn't have needed the print, of course--it's the singer's job to make you to notice such stuff. Nevertheless, I'm officially sorry I once called her pseudo-Sade. She's realer than Sade.

See Also