One shouldn't feel sorry for Maxim, which committed journalistic hara-kiri by reviewing the Black Crowes' 2008 album Warpaint without actually, like, hearing it. The poor deadline-pressed yuppies missed two things: a fine Chris Robinson song suite (his best since The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion) and a thorough draining of the hippie-boogie swamp leeching the last of the band's rock & roll purpose. The Crowes' swagger and the soul are back, from "Goodbye Daughters of the Revolution," which suggests Little Feat facing off with the Small Faces, with Luther Dickinson (of the North Mississippi Allstars) refereeing on slide guitar, to the effortless country soul of tracks like "Oh Josephine" and "Locust Street." Whatever you do with his ego, Robinson remains an emotionally persuasive rock singer, and he again has the material worth his and his band's serious chops.
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