Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

The Isley Brothers: The Isleys Live [T-Neck, 1973]
"Featuring Ernest Isley on Lead Guitar," says a sticker on the back, and that's the pitch for these (slightly) extended remakes, their last album before moving to CBS. Problem is, all that makes Little Brother a Hendrix heir is that unlike most soul-trained guitarists he doesn't merely support the vocalist--he's loud, slow, dramatic. I prefer him to Robin Trower, say--fewer chops, apter context. But they really ought to let him do his thing in the studio. B-