Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Sixpence None the Richer: Sixpence None the Richer [Squint Entertainment, 1998]
If you hold your breath and are very good, maybe "Kiss Me" will prove a fluke. Maybe in the end it'll only be the innocent invitation to making out a deserving teen subdemographic craved. But don't tell yourself stories about biz or fundamentalist plots. Christians not proselytizers, they're an indie-rock success story who come by their limpid sound more organically than the Sundays or the Innocence Mission, both of whom they sincerely admire. Leigh Nash's clear little voice, like a young Natalie Merchant without the neurotic undertow? Her own. Matt Slocum's classed-up minor-key arrangements, like an acoustic Radiohead without the existential foofaraw? His own. They hope to create pretty, well-meaning stuff like this in perpetuity, for the sheer joy of it. Which means they could be nauseating urban skeptics for years. C+