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Jimmy Guterman

Reporter

  • Amnesia

    Ho-hum, another first-rate Richard Thompson album. Since he left the pioneer folk-rock unit Fairport Convention in the early Seventies, the British guitarist, songwriter and singer has released record after record of emotionally explosive music featuring powerful deliberations on love, death and tradition. On Amnesia, Thompson has the difficult task of following up 1986's Daring Adventures, […]

    • Album Reviews
  • Poetic Champions Compose

    Although it doesn't soar as unexpectedly high as last year's No Guru, No Method, No Teacher, Van Morrison's Poetic Champions Compose is another worthy installment in his series of soulful, meditative explorations. Unlike other aging pop performers who respond to changing tastes by desperately, aimlessly chasing trends, Morrison has retreated toward his deliberate Celtic muse, […]

    • Album Reviews
  • Legend

    This is the bottom of the Lynyrd Skynyrd barrel: what did you expect ten years after the band's plane went down? But even the least of its work provokes some interest. The Jacksonville, Florida, band was the most consistent of the Southern hard rockers, and the late Ronnie Van Zant was an astute writer and […]

    • Album Reviews
  • The Otis Redding Story

    Otis Redding packed a whole lot of get-down and a lifetime's worth of testifyin' into the five short years that he recorded for Stax/Volt Records, and now the legacy is given its first serious reissue treatment in this generous four-record box (sixty tracks in chronological order, complete with in-depth annotation). Huge chunks of his brilliant […]

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  • Dead Letter Office

    Neither the new R.E.M. album nor the stopgap product that bands often spit out between real records, Dead Letter Office is what its title suggests, a clearinghouse for outtakes, cover versions and B sides of singles. R.E.M. just wants to make them available. If the fans don't like it, the next R.E.M. album will be […]

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  • Freedom

    The centerpiece of Freedom, Santana's fifteenth album, is "Songs of Freedom," one of the most petulant songs in rock history. Over an aimless funk groove, Buddy Miles, Santana's latest singer, bellows, "Everybody tells me, we love your songs/Your soul is precious, but it just ain't good enough/You need a single to help you through/Program directors, […]

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  • True Colors

    True Colors, Cyndi Lauper's second album, doesn't sound much like her megaplatinum She's So Unusual — and good for her. Lauper's out-of-nowhere 1983 solo debut was an eminently listenable, often brave, frankly subversive work that stood pop convèntion on its fat, stuffy head. When Lauper sang the celebratory "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" or […]

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  • Lives In The Balance

    Jackson Browne wants to know what went wrong. Like several other platinum American rockers who came of age in the late Sixties — Bruce Springsteen, John Cougar Mellencamp and Don Henley are all his contemporaries — he's seen the heady activism of an era wither and die. On his eighth LP, Browne joins them in […]

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  • Pack Up The Plantation: Live!

    On Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' best albums, Damn the Torpedoes and Hard Promises, they mined rich sources, most often the Byrds and the Rolling Stones, and made those sounds their own. Petty's recent work has been less consistent, but on this live double album he still sounds impassioned and impressive when he lays into […]

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  • Done With Mirrors

    PMRC to the contrary, heavy metal is not an inherently noxious influence on young children. At its best, heavy metal acts as a genuine voice for a community that hasn't yet developed its own. But Aerosmith's unawaited reunion LP, Done with Mirrors, is the work of burned-out lugheads whose lack of musical imagination rivals their […]

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