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Posted inMusic

The Album at Twilight

Robert Christgau Christgau’s Consumer Guide: Albums of the ’90s (St. Martin’s Griffin) By Kevin John Robert Christgau began his writing career in 1967–the same year Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band solidified the status of the album as the primary bearer of meaning in pop music. It didn’t take him long to formalize this development […]

Posted inMusic

Who’s Kidding Who?

2gether: Music From the MTV Original TV Movie (TVT Soundtrax) By Kevin John Teen pop is disposable, right? It’s a question that a legion of aging Generation X music fans is nervously asking of late. But Britney Spears, the Backstreet Boys, and their pubescent peers have no intention of giving up the spotlight anytime soon, […]

Posted inMusic

Playing Dumb

Scritti Politti Anomie & Bonhomie (Virgin) By Kevin John It’s not an illusion: everything really does happen faster in the Information Age. And though it’s nice in theory to be able to access untold resources with the click of a mouse, faster is not always better. The Renaissance man has been swamped by a sea […]

Posted inMusic

African Spleen

The Music in My Head by Mark Hudson (Jonathan Cape) The Music in My Head: Indispensable Classics and Unknown Gems From the Golden Age of African Pop (Stern’s Africa) By Kevin John Last week I had a dream in which I was on a bus in Senegal. I didn’t know anyone on the bus and […]

Posted inMusic

Digital R & B

Ginuwine The Bachelor (550 Music) By Kevin John In the information age, the music of choice is the music uploaded with the most information, natch, like Ginuwine’s number-one R & B single “Pony.” In the space of just a measure and a half you get car skids, “Atomic Dog” panting, that bleep you hear after […]