Ian Hunter

The Artful Dodger

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As Ian Hunter's first record since his 1989 collaboration with Mick Ronson, Artful Dodger appropriately offers a tribute to the late guitarist in "Michael Picasso," but a greater tribute to the guitarist is the fact that the album could have used some of his focused production skills. Hunter still has his cynical wit and skill for catchy, intelligent rockers, but the material on the record is disarmingly uneven, considering that it took him seven years to make the album. A sharper production could have saved the weaker moments, but the sound is a bit too pedestrian and the focus a bit too fuzzy to make the record a true return to form.

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