Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Pete Townshend: All the Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes [Atco, 1982]
What intelligence must have gone into this album! What craft! What personal suffering! What tax-deductible business expenditure! In 1982, at 37, Townshend has somehow managed to conceive, record, and release a confessional song suite the pretentiousness of which could barely be imagined by an acid-damaged Bard drama major. That is, it's pretentious at an unprecedented level of difficulty--you have to pay years of dues before you can twist such long words into such unlikely rhymes and images and marshal arrangements of such intricate meaninglessness. A stupendous achievement. D+