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Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band: Ice Cream For Crow (Virgin)

Richard Cook, New Musical Express, 11 September 1982

THE TIME has come and gone for Captain Beefheart to evade the confines of 'criticism'. If we posit Trout Mask Replica and Lick My Decals Off, Baby as the alien child's garden of sorrow which their delirious pathos demands, then the smudgy and windblasted music of Ice Cream For Crow is the return to those forlorn pastures – only to find a wilderness gone dry and dusty. Where Beefheart's medicine show of the fantastic once shook with fevered life, its characters are now straining to cloud mirrors. As disappointments go, this one is serious.

Total word count of piece: 655