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

John McLaughlin: Devotion [Douglas, 1970]
McLaughlin reminds me as much of Duane Eddy as of John Coltrane--he loves electric noise for its own sake and rocks more naturally than he swings. Here Buddy Miles provides his usual ham-handed thump, a universe away from Tony Williams's sallies, and McLaughlin just marches along on top, his tone supremely heavy by choice. But like Coltrane, though in a much more detached way, he can get enormous mileage out of harmonic ideas whose simplicity is probably one source of the spirituality he generates. Rarely has a rock improvisation been more basic or more thoughtfully conceived than on the title track, where he and Larry Young trade the same elemental motif for so long it turns into an electric mantra. A