Sunday, 8 April 2018

New York Dolls "New York Dolls" 1973 US Glam Rock Proto Punk (500 Greatest Albums All Of Time Rolling Stone)


New York Dolls "New York Dolls" 1973 US Glam Rock Proto Punk (500 Greatest Albums All Of Time Rolling Stone)
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In 1972, when rock & roll was all but dead in Manhattan, five cross-dressing glam punks from the boroughs convened and began hammering out crude, sub-Chuck Berry rock for the downtown in-crowd. It took another year before a record company dared to sign them, thus foisting The New York Dolls on an essentially uninterested world. Taking their cue from the band's guitarist/Keefalike Johnny Thunders, hardcore Dolls fans pooh-poohed Todd Rundgren's production as wimpy: twenty-five years after its release, songs like "Personality Crisis" and "Looking for a Kiss" sound more trashily invigorating than ever. With the Rolling Stones finished as a vital force by '73, the doomed Dolls were there to step into the void. A classic. --Barney Hoskyns....~


The New York Dolls (1973) predates punk rock by about a year, as the Ramones are considered the pioneers of the genre. However, I think that the foundation was laid with this incredible debut album by the Dolls. While the whole punk 'image' wasn't defined until a few years later with the haircuts, tattoos, etc. of subsequent notable punk groups like the Sex Pistols, The Exploited, and many others, it was this group that invented the raw sound and subject matter in songs that would morph into punk rock. For this, they deserve a lot of recognition, but sadly haven't gotten it as of yet. Every song on this album is stellar, so I won't name a top three list. Keep in mind that the New York Dolls aren't 100% punk rock, but rather punk rock and glam rock, creating a neat concoction in sound. This is one essential and defining album in music...by...Todd7...~


I discovered the New York Dolls in a rather strange way. I work at a store in the mall that played cheesy Halloween songs during the Halloween season. I never really paid any mind to any of them, but one in particular stood out, and that was the song Frankenstein by the New York Dolls. I loved David Johansen's lyrics and the way he excuted his vocals, especially at the end of the song. I didn't know too much about the Dolls, other than the fact that Johnny Thunders did lead guitar for them, but this song really helped spark an interest. I ended up checking them out right here on amazon.com, and I'm very glad that I did so. This is a wonderful album from a wonderful band. At some points, these guys were extremely ahead of their time. I really like the feel of the production. I guess the actual production quality is somewhere in the middle, but it suites the music, along with the monstrous vocals of Mr. Johansen perfectly. This is really more of a rock release, but it still caters some of the earliest of punk elements. Not only does this album offer some great originality in music, it also bears one of the greatest album covers in music history! I'm only 19 years old, so I guess I hold this release on much higher pedestal because I may have gone through life without even knowing of it's existance. To sum this all up, I'm very glad I was lucky enough to discover the Dolls and encourage anyone interested in them to give this album a chance....~


Whisky A Go Go, August 25, 1973

This is one of the great albums in the history of Rock 'n Roll. I had almost forgotten what a barn-burner it is 'til I cranked my new copy up again. The unspoken truth is that Punk was done before it begun with The Dolls, The Stooges, The Velvet Underground & the MC5 years ahead of the curve. Somebody had to break the ground for the Ramones, Patti Smith Group & Television, & The New York Dolls were the greatest band in America for the two albums they made. A Must Have, along w/ The New York Dolls in Too Much To Soon....by.... Sean A. Heaney...~



Never as bad as the press at the time held them to be, The New York Dolls are probably the point where style definitely won over substance. Their influence can be felt just as much in their dress sense and openly dysfunctional behaviour as in their sometimes questionable musical output. But that doesn’t stop their debut album being one of the most visceral, thrilling rides ever released. Thirty Five years later it still sounds as raw and snotty as ever. 

By the time this album was released they’d already packed enough rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle into their three years existence than most bands get in a lifetime. Having supported Rod Stewart, lost a drummer to heroin and lived as hard as their songs suggested, they’d emerged from a residency in New York’s Mercer Arts Center as both pariahs and icons. Hated by the old guard (Bob Harris’ sneering intro on the Old Grey Whistle Test showed exactly what his generation thought of these preening transvestite lookalikes) they gave early hope to a teen audience sick of bloated prog and muso posturing. 

For their first album they’d taken the rather unusual step of hiring the decidedly muso Todd Rundgren. Legend has it that he’d been taken to see the band to demonstrate how awful they were, but decided that he liked them anyway. In the studio he took a largely hands-off approach which captured them in their raw essence. To this day fans blame Todd for the album’s somewhat muzzy tone, but the truth is that the band were victims of their own snobbishness; wresting the tapes from him before he could mix it properly. 

No matter. The New York Dolls is a powerhouse of Stones swagger, bluesy attitude, garage punk sloppiness and 60s girl group pastiche. From the opening scream of “Personality Crisis” (which still sounds similar to Noddy Holder’s) via the social commentary of “Vietnamese baby” and chronicling of NY’s demi-monde in “Looking For A Kiss”, “Subway Train” or “Bad Girl” it appealed equally to fans of the MC5, glam or heavy metal. No one at this time had combined all this into a single band. The riffs of Johnny Thunders and the bawling of David Johansen gave birth to big hair metal as well as punk and still sounds like the end of civilisation. As their follow-up was so rightly named, Too Much Too Soon, it couldn’t last. But today their debut still startles on every listen....by...Chris Jones ...BBC review...~







At least half the white kids who grow up in Manhattan are well off and moderately arty, like Carly Simon and John Paul Hammond. It takes brats from the outer boroughs to capture the oppressive excitement Manhattan holds for a half-formed human being the way these guys do. The careening screech of their music was first heard in the Cooper Union station of the Lexington IRT, and they don't stop there. Mixing early-'60s popsong savvy with late-'60s fast-metal anarchy, they seek love l-u-v from trash and bad girls. They go looking for a kiss among the personality crises. And they wonder whether you could make it with Frankenstein...by...Robert Christgau....~






The New York Dolls created punk rock before there was a term for it. Building on the Rolling Stones' dirty rock & roll, Mick Jagger's androgyny, girl group pop, the Stooges' anarchic noise, and the glam rock of David Bowie and T. Rex, the New York Dolls created a new form of hard rock that presaged both punk rock and heavy metal. Their drug-fueled, shambolic performances influenced a generation of musicians in New York and London, who all went on to form punk bands. And although they self-destructed quickly, the band's first two albums remain among the most popular cult records in rock & roll history. 

All of the members of the New York Dolls played in New York bands before the band formed in late 1971. Guitarists Johnny Thunders and Rick Rivets, bassist Arthur Kane, and drummer Billy Murcia were joined by vocalist David Johansen. Early in 1972, Rivets was replaced by Syl Sylvain and the group began playing regularly in Lower Manhattan, particularly at the Mercer Arts Center. Within a few months, they had earned a dedicated cult following, but record companies were afraid of signing the Dolls because of their cross-dressing and blatant vulgarity. 

Late in 1972, the Dolls embarked on their first tour of England. During the tour, drummer Murcia died after mixing drugs and alcohol. He was replaced by Jerry Nolan. After Nolan joined the band, the Dolls finally secured a record contract with Mercury Records. Todd Rundgren -- whose sophisticated pop seemed at odds with the band's crash-and-burn rock & roll -- produced the band's debut New York Dolls, which appeared in the summer of 1973. The record received overwhelmingly positive reviews, but it didn't stir the interest of the general public; the album peaked at number 116 on the U.S. charts. The band's follow-up, Too Much Too Soon, was produced by the legendary girl group producer George "Shadow" Morton. Although the sound of the record was relatively streamlined, the album was another commercial failure, only reaching number 167 upon its early summer 1974 release. 

Following the disappointing sales of the Dolls' two albums, Mercury Records dropped the band. No other record labels were interested in the group, so the Dolls decided to hire a new manager, the British Malcolm McLaren, who would soon become famous for managing the Sex Pistols. With the Dolls, McLaren began developing his skill for turning shock into invaluable publicity. Although he made it work for the Pistols just a year later, all of his strategies backfired for the Dolls. McLaren made the band dress completely in red leather and perform in front of the U.S.S.R.'s flag, all of which meant to symbolize the Dolls' alleged communist allegiance. The new approach only made record labels more reluctant to sign the band and members soon began leaving the group. 

By the middle of 1975, Thunders and Nolan left the Dolls. The remaining members, Johansen and Sylvain, fired McLaren and assembled a new lineup of the band. For the next two years, the duo led a variety of different incarnations of the band, to no success. In 1977, Johansen and Sylvain decided to break up the band permanently. Over the next two decades, various outtakes collections, live albums, and compilations were released by a variety of labels and the New York Dolls' two original studio albums never went out of print. 

Upon the Dolls' breakup, David Johansen began a solo career that would eventually metamorphose into his lounge-singing alter ego, Buster Poindexter, in the mid-'80s. Syl Sylvain played with Johansen for two years before he left to pursue his own solo career. Johnny Thunders formed the Heartbreakers with Jerry Nolan after they left the group in 1975. Over the next decade, the Heartbreakers would perform sporadically and Thunders would record an occasional solo album. On April 23, 1991, Thunders was found dead in his room at the St. Peter House in New Orleans, Louisiana. Nolan performed at a tribute concert for Thunders later in 1991; a few months later, he died of a stroke at the age of 40. 

In 2004, former Smiths vocalist Morrissey -- who was once the president of a British New York Dolls fan club -- invited the surviving members of the New York Dolls to perform at the 2004 Meltown Festival, a music and cultural festival that was being curated that year by the singer. To the surprise of many, David Johansen, Syl Sylvain, and Arthur Kane agreed to the gig, with Steve Conte (from Johansen's solo band) standing in for Thunders and Gary Powell from the Libertines sitting in on drums. The group's set was well received by critics and fans (and was recorded for release on DVD and compact disc), which led to offers for other festival appearances, but only a few weeks after the Meltdown show, Kane checked himself into a Los Angeles hospital with what he thought was a severe case of the flu. Kane's ailment was soon diagnosed as leukemia, and he died only a few hours later, on July 13, 2004, at age 55. 

With Sam Yaffa (of Hanoi Rocks) on bass, the remaining Dolls played a hometown tribute to their fallen brothers at Little Steven's International Underground Garage Festival in New York City on August 14, 2004, reuniting again (this time with Brian Delaney on drums) in 2006 for the all-new CD/DVD One Day It Will Please Us to Remember Even This. The Todd Rundgren-produced 'Cause I Sez So appeared on Rhino in 2009. A fifth studio album, Dancing Backward in High Heels, featuring both Johansen and Sylvain and produced and mixed by Jason Hill, appeared from 429 Records early in 2011. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine.....~




It's hard to actually define the genre characteristics of this record. It certainly isn't "punk", because musically, it is nowhere near the classic Ramones/Pistols/Clash sound, and lyrically, the Dolls are anything but 'punk'. Yet it's way too hard-rocking and uncompromised for 'classic rock'n'roll' as well: those that claim the New York Dolls rocked harder than the Stones are absolutely and undeniably right (except that it's just an objective statement that doesn't place the New York Dolls above the Rolling Stones like some hotheads have suggested). Don't forget "glam" - it's loud, brash and self-exposing just like any T. Rex or Slade album of the period would have sounded. But then again, it's not exactly standard for a glam record to sound so raw, unpolished and sloppy - glam is usually slick and sweet (and Sweet!), and this album is anything but slick, even if it was produced by Todd Rundgren. 

It is, therefore, best to think of New York Dolls as an important transition element in rock's evolution, an element which takes the boogie punch of the Stones, the wildness of the Stooges and the MC5, the brashness of Marc Bolan and the weirdness of David Bowie, and fuses all of that in an exciting mould which would later influence everybody from AC/DC to the Ramones to Kiss. In other words, the album's tremendous historic importance can't be overlooked: before the Dolls, nobody ever tried making such an interesting fusion of the "wild" essence (Stooges-like) and dress it into the accessible, conventional form of a classic rocker. In other words, where the Stooges could never really be appreciated by a lot of people due to their uncompromised position, the Dolls improved on that formula (or maybe "profanated" it, if you're a purist). 
The main question, then, is: outside of the historic importance, is the album still listenable today? Hmm. Difficult question. Yes, the Dolls' approach was fresh and exciting, but was the band's songwriting up to par? My answer is: more or less. Actually, in terms of penning melodies they are only a couple notches above Kiss, but this couple of notches is that crucial couple which marks the transgression from "tasteless" to "acceptable". Throw in a more diverse approach to instrumentation, with pianos and occasional saxes and vocal harmonies and all; Dave Johansen's Jagger-imitating scowl, which is far more subtle and involving than Paul Stanley's relentless sexist roar; and, most important, cute little Stonesey lyric lines that display a sense of humour and playful lightweightness and lack disgusting cliches, and the picture is complete. 
Not that the melodies are all memorable. Too often the Dolls just get on through the vibe alone: the lengthy 'Frankenstein' is a typical example, just an ultra-loud never ending punkish rave-up that holds up due to two factors - Johansen's theatrical vocal delivery and Johnny Thunders' masterful guitarwork. Overdubbing all that guitarwork probably took lots of effort... but isn't that an ominous synthesizer pattern I hear in the background? Or just more guitars? In any case, whatever it is, don't forget to listen to the song until the last second and suck in all of that fabulous crescendo. 
Still, now and then you'll be rewarded by a catchy chorus, as in the case of 'Trash', a fast joyful ode to... to nothing, with echoey background vocals and a cool nonchalant, no-bull atmosphere about it. Or the more laid back boogie of 'Subway Train', a strangely introspective and philosophic tune dressed up as unpretentious barroom rock - with a little more slickness, this one could have been a hit for Lynyrd Skynyrd. Or the chaotic mess of 'Lookin' For A Kiss' which starts out as a bad Velvet Underground rip-off but then veers off into Stonesy territory with a nice melody twist that brings us to the glorious chorus conclusion - 'uh I'm just lookin for a kiss...'. Or 'Jet Boy', Dave Johansen's frantic cry of anger and frustration and jealousy that closes the album - any respectable headbanger will have to learn that one by heart. 'Jet Boys fly, Jet Boys gone, Jet Boys stole my baby...'. 
Only on 'Frankenstein' and particularly 'Vietnamese Baby' do the Dolls show us that they took the cue not only from the 'Bitch' side of the Stones, but also from their 'Gimmie Shelter' side. The latter takes my vote for best song on the album, as it's melodically equal to most of the good stuff on here, but the lyrics and Johnny Thunders' wailing apocalyptic guitar give it a special edge which is missing elsewhere - heck, it's almost goth in atmosphere. And it has good riffs, too, imagine that. Good riffs on a New York Dolls record? Lawdy! 
The usual complaint, of course, would be that the record is so mercilessly un-diverse - rocker after rocker, with the lone exception of the acoustic 'Lonely Planet Boy' where Johansen muffles down his voice and ends up sounding even more like a Jagger clone than elsewhere. Not a bad song, but don't ask me if I've heard better ones. You know the answer. And mark this, too: good as some of this stuff is, apart from maybe 'Vietnamese Baby', not a single song on here is absolutely mind-blowing. It's just basic rock'n'roll, after all, even if it's delivered so hot. Some blame Todd Rundgren for toning down the band's energy and failing to milk them for their whole potential, but the problem's not with Todd, the problem is that the band is clearly more concerned with image and style than with the little four letter concept that we the pathetic mainstream worms call S-O-N-G. Ever heard that word? In today's postmodernistic society there's an actual chance that you haven't.........~













"From New York. The New York Dolls emerged in the post-rock pre-punk early-'70s welter of glam-rock, championing trash, androgyny, old-fashioned rock 'n' roll, drugs, and fun. They were much loved as a live act but somehow the point never quite made it to vinyl. Still, they knew their place and worked it well -singer David Johansen looked back to Mick Jagger and forward to Axl Rose, while his compadre Johnny Thunders did the same with Keith Richards and Slash. They had that seductive, unruly, swaggering poise about them; that much, anyway, has survived." -- quote from someone that I don't remember 

The New York Dolls were THE glam band. To my knowledge, they were the first ever full-blown cross-dressing musicians. They were managed by low-life money-grubber Malcolm McLaren who, of course, went on to "create" the Sex Pistols and then claim he created "punk" (much like Al Gore saying "I invented the internet."). Musically they were no-nonsense, straight up balls-to-the-wall rock 'n' roll. I guess I should skip all the crap and head right into the review. 

The opening track on the New York Doll's self-titled debut is the classic tune "Personality Crisis". The song starts out with a howl of "ooowwww-oooooo yea, yea, yea" then counters with a personality confliction "no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no". This song is a classic New York Doll's song, possibly their best. "And you're a prima ballerina on a spring afternoon. Change on into the wolfman howlin at the moon hooowww" 

"When I say I'm in love, you best believe I'm in love. L - U - V." starts out the song "Looking For A Kiss". The topic of love is the favorite song topic of the New York Dolls, nothing surprising from a group of cross-dressing drug addicts, right? Straight up rock 'n' roll here, "Listen when I tell ya, you got no time for fix // Cus I just gotta make it, cant afford to miss // And there's one reason, I'm tellin you this // I feels bad.... // And I'm lookin for a kiss." 

"Vietnamese Baby" is another definite one of my favorite Dolls songs. The music is "doomy" and the searing riffs mixed with the overdriven drums after each verse build on the songs strength, as do the spiteful lyrics. 

"Lonely Planet Boy" is a very soft, quiet acoustic song. I can't say I care for it all too much. 

Up comes another great song, the original version of "Frankenstein", the better of the two versions. Over 6 minutes of heartache and teen angst. 

"Trash" is probably the catchiest, or at least tied with "Personality Crisis" as the catchiest, Dolls song. The lyrics are basically one verse repeated, altered slightly each time. Perhaps that is why it is so catchy? Actually, it is the rockin' rhythm of the song that makes it catchy. 

"A new bad girl, who get on my block // I gave her my keys, said don't bother to knock // I said c'mon, ya got what I need // I said come on, don't make my heart bleed" are the lyrics that open "Bad Girl". I think that is all that needs to be said. 

"Subway Train" is one of the slower songs on this album. "Ever since I been // Ridin, right on the // Subway Train // You can hear the whistle blowin // Ya might think I'm insane" 

"Pills" is yet another classic New York Dolls song. You may be wondering why there are so many classic Dolls songs. It is because they are fucking awesome. Harmonica charged raunch rock. "As I was lyin in a hospital bed // A rock n roll nurse go into my head // She says, hold ya arm boys, stick out ya tounges // I gots some pills I'm gonna give you some." "A little pill for my legs, but that didn't ache // I tried some pills for my heart, but a little to late // Got some pills for my love, try to get me at ease // when a rock n roll nurse shook me down to my knees." 

"Private World" features an exceptionally odd intro for the Dolls. The rest of the music sticks out a bit when compared to the rest of the music. The song is a plea for a private world, which is probably fairly obvious to anyone with a working brain. " The club starts shakin, its ready to crumble. The boys start dukin, lookin for a rumble. I need a private world." 

The album rounds out with "Jet Boy", a song about a jet boy who stole his girl. 
" Jet Boys fly 
Jet Boys gone 
Jet Boy stole my baby 
Flyin around New York City so high 
Like he was my baby 

Well, that's it. Nothing more to see here folks, move along. In fact, move to the record store and get this album, because it is one of the best rock albums of all time.....by....Rob Paxon ..........~







It must have been in 83 or 84 during my years "destroy" high school ... A punk of my class lends me an audio tape recorded with a photo of a group motley assuring me that the content would necessarily please me. see me again in a peremptory tone answer him: "Oh a group glam with the genus MOTLEY CRUE or SATAN JOKERS !!". What a mistake !! At the time I knew the DOLLS only by name, and the glam rock had the ugly face, in these "mid eighties", prefabricated groups of master swim swimmers for silicone bimbos that MTV bombarded all day long. It is interesting to note that rap, on the chain in question, had to take over in the early 90s with almost the thematic themes of the "glammers" in question, around the "big ass, big tits, money and cocain "... 

In fact, going back in the history of glam, I quickly realized that the genre had been totally misguided during those Reagan years ... Ten years ago, the dolls of New York symbolized the glam rock and frustrated to the American, their compatriot LOU REED found them also very cute ... They (they?) embodied the "glitter" or glam rock in its version "andywarholesque" but paradoxically much less "arty" than what was done in the style in England at the same time (BOWIE and ROXY MUSIC). They were also much more decadent than the "prolos roosts" (SWEET and other SLADE) Five types (!) Made up like truckers, kinds of "bad guys" junkies playing trans-channel big apple in a time when the sulphurous theory of gender does not exist yet. So much for the provoc that illustrates perfectly the cover of their first album, ranged in the anthology records of PROTO PUNK next to those of STOOGES, MC5 and BLUE OYSTER CULT. With these, they will be the darlings of the intelligentsia of the avant-garde rock critic of "States" (Lester Bangs, the Creem newspaper ...) and from here (Eudeline, Yves Adrien). 

From the beginning, what conquered the critics fleeing the many "avatars" of the hippie movement of the period, is the electric "shoot" inaugurated by the first brulot of the disc: "Personality crisis". We hear a singer, DAVID JOHANSEN, a kind of outrageous and braillard version of Mick JAGGER, and the riffs stamped "garage rock" of Sir Johnny THUNDERS who will pass at the time (later almost caricatural) Keith RICHARDS for a "little child with a wooden cross" ... But beyond the totally claimed Stonian influence, the dolls are also inspired by the "girls bands" at the SHANGRIS LAS (for the female choirs on the delicious " Trash "), the MC5 (especially for Thunders), garage bands at the CHOCOLATE WATCHMAN, the VELVET UNDERGROUND (blatantly for" lonely planet boy "), surfing ("Subway train"). Roughly, all the sexy heritage and crazy furious sixties. 

The romantic song (hum!) "Looking for a kiss" will be four years later mocked by the PISTOLS in their redoubtable "New York" (to which a Thunders solo respond by a lapidary "London boys" resulting in a fratricidal guéguerre between the Rican and English scene) but paradoxically lights the firecracker that will explode called ... Punk rock! The epic "Vietnamese baby" evokes (just like the "search and destroy" STOOGES) the trauma of Vietnam. The proto punkers dynamite the famous "Pills" of the immense Bo DIDDLEY. Then "Private world" sounds like heavy and devious heavy rhythm and blues while the furious "Bad girl" is a punk boogie for the best effect. "Jet boys" (which will give its name to an ephemeral Parisian group "glitter garage" of the "eighties" ) is a piece that the poor GUNS AND ROSES (false heirs?) will seek in vain to draw the substantive marrow. But the best title is certainly "Frankeinstein": six minutes long, strewn with riffs pests whose orgiastic atmosphere announces the ... Gothic! At the level of the theme obviously but also the judicious addition of disturbing notes of synths. 

So think ... The work is done in the middle of a discography "rock" dominated in large part in 1973 by horrible productions "country", the hard firefighter DEEP PURPLE style and awful babas at CAT STEVENS ... Head of timeless work that should be the soundtrack of all your "parties"...by.Nosferatu....~





























The New York Dolls are a band that have, over time, come to be defined more by the drugs, debauchery, and deaths of various members than their actual music, although the original line-up has never been given enough credit for being good musicians, in my opinion. Much like The Sex Pistols and even The Ramones, they are always labelled as ‘influential’ in terms of style and attitude, without being given due respect for their musicianship and the songs they wrote and recorded. 

Then again, the reputation they had as being hell raisers was well earned. It isn’t a widely-known fact that before they had even recorded their debut album, the band already had a member die in a drink and drugs-related incident. The young band were in London for the first time together – supporting Rod Stewart of all people – and during one particular house party, 21 year-old Colombian-American drummer Billy Murcia passed out, was placed in a bath of cold water, force-fed coffee by some well-meaning but misguided friends, and asphyxiated. Devastated, the band returned to the States and considered packing it in, before Jerry Nolan, several years older and soon-to-be drug buddy of Johnny Thunders, joined on the drum stool. Murcia was a pretty good drummer and an unfortunate loss; he can be heard on the surprisingly-good Lipstick Killers: The Mercer Street Sessions 1972 album, which showcases a young band, whilst raw and green, nevertheless already with a solid groove and plenty of that trademark venom. 

My own introduction to the ‘Dolls came when I was probably seven or eight. By some fortunate oversight my mum had let me stay up late on a Friday night (she probably wanted me to be tired the next day for some reason) and the TV was on. I think it might have been BBC 2 that was showing re-runs of The Old Grey Whistle Test, and amidst the endless prog dirge that used to be on that show, there suddenly appeared what looked (to my young eyes) to be five extremely hairy aliens from outer space, making some kind of god-awful racket that was at once scary, bewitching, and damn exciting. I knew they were obviously boys/men, but seemed to be wearing girls/womens’ clothes. At one point singer David Johansen looked into the camera and spewed out the words “my bayyyybayyyyy” and I was scared to death and totally hooked at the same time. Years later I found this exact broadcast on Youtube (they were playing ‘Jet Boy’) and I had a minor flashback of the fear and exhilaration I felt all those years ago. It’s a pretty special band that can do that to you. 

Arthur ‘Killer’ Kane, although the least animated of the ‘Dolls, was probably the most outrageous looking of them, as well as being an underrated bassist. Standing about fourteen feet tall in his high-heeled boots and with blonde hair down to his navel, he was an outlandish looking guy despite being a statue on stage. Johnny Thunders, my personal favourite of the Dolls members, was the ‘cool’ member of the group, and one who Sylvain Sylvain once admitted they let join so they could ‘meet more chicks’. His performance could range from fantastic to feckless depending on how he felt or what was in his bloodstream at that very moment. By many accounts he was also a despicable human being, and had more influence on music and modern culture than the rest of the Dolls put together, but that’s a whole other story. There are any books written about the man born John Anthony Genzale, Jr. 

So much has been said of the ‘Dolls’ debut album over the years that it’s hard to separate fact from fiction, but one fact is indisputable: the songs still sound really good. Produced by Todd Rundgren, the album is full of tracks that the reformed band (the two-fifths of it that remains, should I say) still play, and still sound good today. 

‘Personality Crisis’ is the perfect opener, and immediately has the ‘Dolls sounding like a sleazier, rawer version of the Stones (Johansen even looks like Mick Jagger to this day), while ‘Lonely Planet Boy’ is the ‘quiet’ track on the album, and was later recycled into ‘You Can’t Put Your Arms Around A Memory’ by Thunders on his So Alone album. 

‘Frankenstein’ is the longest track at six minutes and brims with Johansen’s throaty screaming and wailing guitar lines before breaking down to an almost spoken-word finish. You can see where Johnny Rotten got his influences from on this track, that’s for sure. ‘Trash’ is one of the ‘Dolls’ most well-known songs, and for good reason. It’s three minutes of pure proto-punk heaven, and includes some surprisingly impressive guitar work by Sylvain Sylvain; who is also criminally-underrated as a musician. They do a calypso version of it on 2009’s Cause I Sez So, and while some music critics called it filler, it sounds fantastic and is well worth a listen. 

‘Jet Boy’ is my favourite Dolls track, probably because it was my introduction to the band, as well as being a pretty catchy and gritty track. Sylvain Sylvain once said the ‘Dolls’ debut album contained all the riffs the band could play between them and nothing else, and while it sounds romantic, probably isn’t true. Johansen and Thunders could write a pretty catchy pop tune when they set their minds to it, and ‘Jet Boy’ is the finest of examples of that. 

In the end, drugs, disagreement, dodgy business decisions and Malcolm McLaren would put an end to the Dolls as a musical force, but this remains a fantastic album and no amount of myth and legend can alter that fact.....by Paul McBride...Flashback....~



















































The New York Dolls 
*David Johansen - Vocals, Harmonica, Gong 
*Arthur "Killer" Kane - Bass Guitar 
*Jerry Nolan - Drums 
*Sylvain Sylvain - Rhythm Guitar, Piano, Vocals 
*Johnny Thunders - Lead Guitar, Vocals 
Additional Musicians 
*Todd Rundgren - Piano, Keyboards, Moog Synthesizer 
*Buddy Bowser - Saxophone 
*Alex Spyropoulos - Piano






















The New York Dolls and Todd Rundgren by Bob Gruen, 1973











Tracklist 
A1 Personality Crisis 3:41 
A2 Looking For A Kiss 3:19 
A3 Vietnamese Baby 3:38 
A4 Lonely Planet Boy 4:09 
A5 Frankenstein (Orig.) 6:00 
B1 Trash 3:08 
B2 Bad Girl 3:04 
B3 Subway Train 4:21 
B4 Pills 2:48 
B5 Private World 3:39 
B6 Jet Boy 4:41 


johnkatsmc5,the experience of music..

volume

volume

Fuzz

Fuzz

Analogue

Analogue

Cassette Deck

Cassette Deck

Akai

Akai

vinyl

vinyl

Music

Music

sound

sound

Hi`s Master`s Voice

Hi`s Master`s Voice

Vinyl

Vinyl

music forever

music forever

“A Revolutionary New Triumph in Tape” 1958

“A Revolutionary New Triumph in Tape” 1958

vinyl

vinyl