After the fuzz-rock revivalism of Are You Gonna Go My Way, Lenny Kravitz
seems to have settled into a comfortable groove, alternating between early-'70s album rock and early-'70s soul, with the occasional Prince
flourish thrown in for good measure. Circus
is the weakest of Kravitz
's albums, simply because he didn't change his style in a distinctive manner, replicating the sound of Are You Gonna Go My Way instead. To compound his problems, Kravitz
kicks off the record with "Rock and Roll Is Dead," a workmanlike rewrite of "Are You Gonna Go My Way" that lacks hooks. However, after one more half-hearted rocker, Circus
begins to open up, as Kravitz
turns in a series of ballads and lightly psychedelic mid-tempo pop numbers, which prove to be his real strength.