Thursday, January 08, 2015

New York Dolls - Dolls Live Dallas '74

This is another unauthorized release that sounds like a standard 70's bootleg - not nearly as good
quality as the previous listing, but this is still listenable, although muddy.

Opening with "Pills", they group is rockin' things up in fine form, although the response is almost non-existent from the Texas crowd. There is an overly long pause - where sit-in bassist Peter Jordan plays a few runs - before they burst into a pretty fierce "Frankenstein", with hearty'n'ballsy guitars leading the way. David goes on a long, ramblin' monologue and then there's the supremely appropriate blues-rock of "Lone Star Queen". Their pacing is terrible here, unfortunately, with big breaks after each tune - giving the audience a chance to call for the opening (?) band - though it gives Johansen a chance to see how he can deal with a hostile crowd - which the band does by throwing out another power-blues with Sonny Boy Williamson's "Don't Start Me Talkin'". There's an edit and then a smokin' "Looking For a Kiss" - thankfully, even though the overall sound is a bit muffled, Thunders really stands out here in all his trashy glory.

Side two opens with some canned NYC street sounds, like the Heartbreakers did on their live record, and they come out blazin' with the "Courageous Cat Theme" morphing into "Personality Crisis" - a great one-two punch! Thunders' shrieking feedback is fabulous on "Vietnamese Baby", while the whole band is top notch - love the twin guitar lead breaks! Gathering their momentum, they move right into a fantastic "Bad Girl" and then the Shangri-La's "Great Big Kiss" (also done by Thunders on So Alone). There's a great, shambolic ending that closes the record, as well - fairly abruptly.

While the sound is iffy and the audience unappreciative, this record does show the power of the Dolls before their demise. Again, only for fans, but it has it's worthwhile moments.