Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

Consumer Guide:
  User's Guide
  Grades 1990-
  Grades 1969-89
  And It Don't Stop
  Book Reports
  Is It Still Good to Ya?
  Going Into the City
  Consumer Guide: 90s
  Grown Up All Wrong
  Consumer Guide: 80s
  Consumer Guide: 70s
  Any Old Way You Choose It
  Don't Stop 'til You Get Enough
Xgau Sez
  And It Don't Stop
  CG Columns
  Rock&Roll& [new]
  Rock&Roll& [old]
  Music Essays
  Music Reviews
  Book Reviews
  NAJP Blog
  Rolling Stone
  Video Reviews
  Pazz & Jop
Web Site:
  Site Map
  What's New?
Carola Dibbell:
  Carola's Website
CG Search:
Google Search:

Consumer Guide Album

Count Basie: America's #1 Band: The Columbia Years [Columbia/Legacy, 2003]
Four CDs worth, and especially but not exclusively as it reaches the '50s, it can be sleek and unforgiving. But most of the time it's breathtaking in both ensemble complexity and individual virtuosity--Lester Young! Jo Jones! Billie Holiday!--and the four 1936 small-group recordings that start things swinging are legendary for a reason. Also, it's encyclopedic--two decades of evolution from combo to big band to combo and big band again, with a disc of radio transcriptions. With his minimalist commitment to big beat and constructed song, Basie was a rock and roll guy in his way. After Decca's Best of Early Basie, this. [Recyclables]