Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Aretha Franklin: Through the Storm [Arista, 1989]
Of the five count-'em five producers who labored over these eight tracks, only Narada Michael Walden--who claims four, including three of the four count-'em four celebrity cameos--can assure a very modern pop album. But only in spite of Walden is it a moderately seductive modern pop album. Delegating the JB duet to dodos who don't have the sense to sample him, buying noncommital generalizations even Whitney can't resist twisting, asking Elton in on the title number, the man epitomizes pop as market research. Singing her ass off on some halfway decent tunes, the artist epitomizes genius. B+