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Latest reviews

Song Review

"She Makes Me Happy"

March 28, 2013

Writing his 2012 autobiography inspired Stewart to pen 11 of the 12 songs on his forthcoming album, Time – his first to feature original material in nearly 20 years. The album might be an unexpected move for rock's greatest interpretive singer,...

Album Review

Human

February 5, 2001

The last time Rod Stewart put his balls on the line was for "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?," a ridiculous, superb disco classic. That was twenty-three years ago. So if you're not salivating at the thought of a new offering from a craggy vet who's coasted throughout...

Album Review

Unplugged... and Seated

June 24, 1993

Let's start with truth in pack-aging: Rod Stewart's Unplugged ... and Seated is packed to the gills with clichés. It's mostly oldies. It's got a guest star, Stewart's former Faces sidekick Ron Wood. It finds the band pretending there's something...

Album Review

Storyteller, Complete Anthology 1964-1990

January 11, 1990

Now here's a box set with balls. With the release of this extensive career anthology, Rod Stewart opens himself up to a barrage of unflattering comparisons between his fondly recalled past and his critically pooh-poohed present. For years nay-sayers have...

Album Review

Rod Stewart

August 14, 1986
Not Rated

What's wrong with Rod? The standard diagnosis is that Stewart's suffering from a prolonged case of creative gout, that the good life's taken a heavy toll on this aging playboy's muse. After all, it's been a decade now since his last uniformly impressive...

Album Review

Absolutely Live

December 9, 1982

Recorded at some of the largest auditoriums in the world, Rod Stewart's Christmas-season cash-in, Absolutely Live, is a mostly noisy record that, in all its grand showbiz gesturing, plays to the back rows. Stewart's entrance, to the strains of "The Stripper,"...

Album Review

Blondes Have More Fun

February 8, 1979
Not Rated

If blondes have as much fun as Rod Stewart's new record insists they do, no wonder they're exhausted when they stagger into the studio. Even so, Stewart's current anemia is a hard thing to understand. Never before has he attacked such uncertain material...

Album Review

A Night on the Town

August 26, 1976
Not Rated

Any critic worth his salt comes to an almost mystical rapport with certain artists. When the melodies and lyrics of such performers float across the mind late at night, they are resented by the cynical journalist as much as they're treasured by the sentimental...

Album Review

Smiler

December 5, 1974
Not Rated

The magnificent catarrh has a new album, Smiler, and it contains what by now you would expect: several energetic new examples of the Stewart/Wood world view, a couple of boozy renditions of classic R&B standards, a sentimental soundalike of Rod's...

Album Review

Every Picture Tells A Story

July 8, 1971
Not Rated

He has it in him, has Rod Stewart, to save a lot of souls, to rescue those of us who are too old for Grand Funk but not old enough for those adorable McCartneys from being nearly consummately bored with the current rock and roll scene. It's not inconceivable...

Album Review

The Rod Stewart Album

February 7, 1970
Not Rated

Rod Stewart, lead singer with the off-again on-again Jeff Beck group, has come up with a superb album of his own. Imagination pervades the music, in the choice of material, in the frequent use of beautiful bottleneck guitar work to draw out the subtler...

Album Review

When We Were The New Boys

June 4, 1998

Nobody stays forever young, so it's heartening to hear signs of life on When We Were the New Boys, Rod Stewart's strongest studio recording in years. Once reduced to cooing trifles like "Love Touch (Love Theme From Legal Eagles)," he sounds here like...

Album Review

Vagabond Heart

May 16, 1991

On Vagabond Heart, rodeo drive intersects Gasoline Alley. Though the album's production shows typical signs of conspicuous consumption, the strength of the songs and the depth of Stewart's conviction make this his most compelling work since the early...

Album Review

Out Of Order

August 11, 1988

After an early career during which he sang exquisite, powerful songs, Rod Stewart forsook the studio for the spotlight and lost the balance between straight-ahead rock & roll and eloquent ballads that galvanized his best albums. On Out of Order,...

Album Review

Body Wishes

September 1, 1983

After listening to Body Wishes, Rod Stewart's latest and surely one of his least, you get the feeling that this singer is sorely in need of what comedian Henny Youngman calls "a charisma bypass." Except for the album's opener, "Dancin' Alone," a Chuck...

Album Review

Tonight I'm Yours

February 4, 1982

Like most rags-to-riches stories, this one's both predictable and messy. From 1974's Smiler through 1980's Foolish Behaviour, Rod Stewart has too often played a singularly buffoonish Falstaff to his own backward Prince Hal, dragging himself down artistically...

Album Review

Foot Loose & Fancy Free

December 15, 1977
Not Rated

There's something to be said for the New Wave rebellion against (to borrow a phrase from the not-so-young-himself Willy De Ville) "old meat." Even if this reaction is mostly confined to England, it seems very healthy. There are a lot of kids in England...

Album Review

Atlantic Crossing

September 25, 1975
Not Rated

To a lot of people, Rod Stewart onstage in midstrut — hair flying, handy with brandy and partial to the broad smile and easy wink — offers as good a definition of the full flash of rock & roll as one is likely to get. He's a wizard at...

Album Review

Sing It Again Rod

August 17, 1973
Not Rated

Sing It Again Rod touches all the solo bases since Stewart's departure from the Jeff Beck Band, wherein he cut his teeth on American audiences for $75 a week plus expenses, and wisely ignores his generally inferior work with the Faces. With only four...

Album Review

Gasoline Alley

September 3, 1970
Not Rated

The music of Rod Stewart helps us to remember many of the small but extremely important experiences of life which our civilization inclines us to forget. Compassion. Care for small things. The textures of sorrow. Remembrance of times past. Reverence for...

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