Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

The Rascals: Peaceful World [Columbia, 1971]
I was impressed at first by the effortlessness of Felix Cavaliere's evolution from white punk r&b to white cosmic jazz. Only the Beach Boys have changed so much with so little apparent strain. Yet in the end the jazz musicians he's signed on--Fathead Newman, Joe Farrell, Pepper Adams, Ron Carter--aren't especially well-suited to popularize Coltrane and Pharoah and Sun Ra. And even if Felix were singing enough, he wouldn't be singing very good stuff--composition has never been his strength, and lately he's been thinking about other things. C+