Pop music 1990: Cheers & jeers

December 30, 1990|By J.D. Considine

THUMBS UP Deee-Lite. With "World Clique," this trio helped put the fuback in funky.

Robert Plant. The best way to keep the Led Zeppelin spirit alive isn't a reunion, it's more new work like "Manic Nirvana."

Lisa Stansfield. Is the best new soul singer of 1990 an Englishwoman? Sure is.

Madonna. Pop music's "Woman Most Likely To," and proud of it.

Robert Johnson's "The Complete Recordings." Proof that no amount of time can diminish the power of the blues.

A Tribe Called Quest. Insightful, inventive and tuneful,"People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm" is a perfect example of positive rap.

Living Colour. Is "Time's Up" heavy metal? You bet -- metal plus soul, rap, social conscience and plenty of intelligence.

Pet Shop Boys. Thanks to scintillating melodies and incisive lyrics, their "Behavior" was never less than perfect.

Digital Underground. Want to know how to rap about sex without being sexist? Listen to these guys.

THUMBS DOWN 2 Live Crew Obscenity Ruling. The only community standards observed here were double standards.

2 Live Crew. They may have the right to talk trash, but that doesn't mean I want to listen.

New Kids on the Block. Does hip taste and a "positive image" excuse their shameless huckstering? I think not.

Nelson. Get a haircut.

Harry Connick Jr. Wanting to be the new Sinatra is fine, but don't start by aping Sinatra's ego.

Milli Vanilli producer Frank Farian. After putting the whole lip-sync scam in motion, he tossed his frontmen aside like a couple of used tissues. So how come they get the blame?

MTV's Standards Board. A risque Madonna video is a no-no, but hard rock sexism is okey-doke? Yeah, right.

M.C. Hammer. His Pepsi spot is cute, but to suggest that he owes his sound to a soda is a real bad rap.

L States of Georgia and South Carolina. Free James Brown! NOW!

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