Picks and Pans Review: Repossessed

updated 03/16/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/16/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

Kris Kristofferson

Now with a running start on old age, Kristofferson, 49, sounds crotchety from time to time. He seems more intent on preaching the gospel than making music once in a while. And his melodies blend into one another when he's not careful. It remains true, however, that no pop composer is capable of more evocative poetry of the commonplace: "You were such a pretty dream, as I remember/ You were young and strong and God was on your side/ But the vision slowly faded like the wonder from your eyes/ And you traded your compassion for your pride." Such lines, and his gritty backup band—including Billy Swan and Stephen Bruton on guitars, Sammy Creason on drums—can obscure a lot of musical sins. Kristofferson lightens up on Mean Old Man. A chummy duet vocal by Carl Perkins helps with such lines as "If I look like a voodoo doll that's what I am/ If I look like voodoo doll who takes his licking standing tall/ Who'd rather bite you back than crawl/ That's what I am." Let's just pretend not to notice that his tune They Killed Him, about the murders of Christ, the Kennedys, Gandhi and Martin Luther King, is pointlessly reminiscent of the old Dion hit Abraham, Martin and John. With Kristofferson's acting career bogged down (Amerika notwithstanding), he should be encouraged to spend time on his music. This is, after all, his first solo album in six years. (Polygram)

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