Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Bob Marley & the Wailers: Live! [Island, 1976]
The rushed tempos take their toll in aura: "Trenchtown Rock" can be far more precise, painful, and ecstatic; like most live albums this relies on obvious material. But the material is also choice, unlike most live albums it's graced by distinct sound and economical arrangements, and the tempos force both singer and the band into moments of wild, unexpected intensity. I used to think Natty Dread's "No Woman, No Cry" was definitive. A-