Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Ultravox: Vienna [Chrysalis, 1980]
First they wanted to be machines, now they want to have roots--it's new, it's different. "A European legacy, a culture for today," sings former Rich Kid Midge Ure through a signifying synthesizer, and he's not being ironic--new Europeans may be jaded, but they avoid irony except in totally frivolous contexts. So they buy electronic instruments, rendezvous in Köln with Conny Plank, and manufacture dance music for the locked pelvis. One strange thing, though--sounds like "Western Promise" should be called "Algiers." C