In Brief

* 1/2 Neil Diamond, "Lovescape," Columbia. Two decades after the success of such brightly rhythmic hits as "Sweet Caroline" and "Song Sung Blue," Neil Diamond seems wearily content to play the role of the master of the lugubrious love song. A duet with Kim Carnes on "Hooked on the Memory of You," a sprinkling of salsa rhythms on "Fortune of the Night" and the buoyant Caribbean sound of "Lonely Lady 17"' are the only mildly appealing moments on an album that sometimes appears to be playing at half-speed. Wake up, Neil!

New albums are rated on a scale of one star (poor) to four (excellent).

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