12 mar. 2012

David Johansen - Here Comes the Night

by Mark Deming
On his first two solo albums, David Johansen sounded like he was trying to walk a fine line between recapturing the glorious chaos of the New York Dolls and creating a sound that better reflected his own individual personality (and might sell a few records in the process). The first half of that equation fell by the wayside while Johansen was recording his third solo set, 1981's Here Comes the Night, which plays more like a conventional hard rock album than David Johansen or In Style, especially when Blondie Chaplin cranks up his guitar on "My Obsession," "She Loves Strangers" or the title cut. However, it doesn't play that much like a conventional hard rock album; few acts reaching for the masses arena-style would have included a neo-samba number like "Marquesa De Sade" (complete with traditional Latin production), the calypso flavored "Rollin' Job," a beatnik homage like "Bohemian Love Pad," or name-checked Vincent Price on "Suspicion." Some of the more playful or willfully eccentric moments on Here Comes the Night seem to anticipate the Buster Poindexter persona Johansen would adopt later in the decade (without the aural wink and nudge), though for the most part the production and arrangements seem to run counter to his occasional bursts of creativity. Johansen's vocals are powerful and full-bodied on Here Comes the Night and there are a few fine tunes here, especially the nightlife homage of the title cut, the atmospheric "She Loves Strangers," and "Heart of Gold," a heartfelt ballad Johansen revived on the first Buster Poindexter LP. But for anyone who remembered Johansen's best work, Here Comes the Night was a real letdown despite its periodic flashes of excitement. [In 2007, American Beat Records reissued Here Comes the Night on compact disc with a bonus track, an alternate take of the title tune that was recorded during a 1982 concert in Boston. The track, which previously surfaced on a rare single, is a nice addition for completists, but it doesn't add a tremendous amount to the album, though the new version sounds better than most of the worn vinyl copies still circulating.]

1 comentario:

  1. Como todo buen grupo que se desbanda, los miembros de NYD tuvieron notables inicios de sus carreras en solitario, a tiempo para recibir el merecido homenaje como pioneros del punk y la nueva ola. Al adentrarse en los 80, Johansen fue perdiendo el rumbo, como tantos otros buenos músicos de la época.