Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Material: Seven Souls [Virgin, 1990]
The male version of Laurie Anderson's Strange Angels is a marriage made in purgatory between two cold motherfuckers: Bill Laswell and Bill Burroughs. Seamlessly synthesizing new-age atmospherics, authentic African passion, and arena-rock dramaturgy, Laswell devises settings for the sci-fi ecopessimism of the greatest reader of our time. Not that it's all dead souls and dire consequences--for balance and to prove he can do it, Laswell also constructs an inspiriting third-world anthem from the remains of John Lydon's "Poptones." B+