Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

David Bowie: The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars [RCA Victor, 1972]
In its own way, this is audacious stuff right down to the stubborn wispiness of its sound, and Bowie's actorly intonations add humor and shades of meaning to the words. Which are often witty and rarely precious, offering an unusually candid and detailed vantage on the rock star's world. Admittedly, for a long time I wondered who cared, besides lost kids for whom such access feels like privilege. The answer is, someone like Bowie--a middlebrow fascinated by the power of a highbrow-lowbrow form. B+