Robert Christgau

  • Bob Dylan / Photo by Getty Images

    'Bob Dylan in the '80s' Tribute Comp Gives a Maligned Era the Respect It Deserves

    Annotating this friendly takeover by smart young Americana types, Jonathan Lethem argues that the maligned and presumed lost '80s Dylan was only trying to prove "that big as he was, he wasn't bigger than rock 'n' roll itself." He hired hit producers; he married his backup singer; he dominated a supergroup that's worn better than most supergroups.

  • Lou Reed in 2010

    Toesucker Blues: Robert Christgau's Farewell Salute to Lou Reed

    Lou Reed, who died today at 71, made no secret of his disdain for many of the people who wrote about him, but longtime Village Voice staffer and Dean of American Rock Critics Robert Christgau is the only one to have his sexual preferences questioned from the stage on one of Reed's live albums. (To wit: "Critics! What does Robert Christgau do in bed?

  • Omar Souleyman / Photo by Jimmy Fontaine

    Omar Souleyman's Intense, Swooning 'Wenu Wenu' Brings Dabke to the Club-Kid Masses

    Silly things will be written about this record, so let me emphasize up top that, overhyped or not, a fine record it is, and fine in a distinct way. But with Omar Souleyman — especially as heard outside the Levant, as the region encompassing his Syrian homeland as well as Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, and Cyprus was once known — "fine" is a double-edged word, because it suggests how subtly we're forced to make distinctions within his catalogue. Americans who already enjoy Souleyman's music don't understand lyrics that explore only one theme anyway, or grok the rhythmic and melodic heritage modernized by his hectic, insistent, electrified, some-say-"techno" version of the long-running Levantine genre called dabke.

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