Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Sweet Talks/A.B. Crentsil

  • Sweet Talks--Hollywood Highlife Party + A.B. Crentsil--Moses [ADC, 1992] A-

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Consumer Guide Reviews:

Sweet Talks--Hollywood Highlife Party + A.B. Crentsil--Moses [ADC, 1992]
Two complete albums, both considered classics, both featuring the colorful character who saved Ghanaian music from James Brown--and Osibisa, who were so impressed they bankrolled a band for him when his luck went bad. How Ghanaian Crentsil's music is I couldn't say, since highlife was Westernized to begin with, but at least he brought in palm-wine guitar and African narrative strategies, as the goofy translation of "Moses" makes as clear as is appropriate. The seven earlier cuts, recorded on a 1978 U.S. visit, fall in the five-minute range and will charm if you give them a chance. The two later ones, recorded in 1983, fall in the 16-minute range and will recede unless you read along. A-