Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

The Eagles: On the Border [Asylum, 1974]
The critic in me has no doubt that this is their best album, although he notes that the male-bonding songs (which articulate an affirmative ethos) have more to say than the female-separation songs (which rationalize hostility into pity/contempt). And when the critic plays the record, the listener enjoys the Gram Parsons tribute "My Man," the MOR-oriented "Best of My Love," the vaguely anti-authoritarian "On the Border," the permanently star-struck "James Dean," and several others. But the listener is too turned off by what the band represents ever to put the thing on voluntarily. B+