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:

Consumer Guide Album

Ambitious Lovers: Greed [Virgin, 1988]
Guess the title's because this is more commercial than Envy, which I guess Arto called that because he was insecure about playing funk and samba. Well, he's not insecure any more. With Peter Scherer melding Brazil and the Black Rock Coalition into a spectrum of astonishing bands, he's sitting on top of one of the sharpest, coolest, bestest funk or samba records ever made--funk as light and samba as pop as the Michaels McDonald or Franks could hope for, only all fused and fucked with. Moments of guitar anarchy (from Vernon Reid or Bill Frisell when chops are called for, from Arto when Arto is) add a New York edge to the tropico hedonism, and there's a consciously childlike playfulness to Arto's vocal technique that's a hemisphere away from the sun-dazed romantic insouciance of his Lusophone mentors. Which certainly isn't to say he lacks insouciance--the bespectacled sometime skronkmaster is as sexy as George Michael when he wants to be, which on these postpostmodern love songs he does. Wonder what Lust will sound like. A