Picks and Pans Review: Grown Backwards

updated 03/22/2004 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/22/2004 AT 01:00 AM EST

David Byrne

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Former Talking Head David Byrne's solo work has tended to dip into arty pretension. His latest CD is no exception. Byrne even includes two opera arias, which, while capably performed (especially the duet with Rufus Wainwright, "Au Fond du Temple Saint" from Bizet's The Pearl Fishers), seem to shout, "Look at me, I'm a serious artist." Byrne is at his best when he is at his lightest. On the breezy ditty "She Only Sleeps," he sings, "She can have it all/That's the reason you wouldn't believe/But she only sleeps with me," while the slyly funky "Dialog Box" is Byrne at his Headiest.

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