From The Archives: Sylvain Sylvain S/T (RCA)


Ex-New York Doll Syl’s first solo album is a wonderful exercise in pure pop with no hard edges, but hooks and melodies aplenty. A far cry from the seedy three chord sound of the Dolls, this LP’s chock full of 50’s and 60’s influenced rock n roll pop. Tinkly keyboards and saxophone punctuate most tracks, complimenting Syl’s pleasant vocal style. It’s simply light and bubbly listening from start to finish. As the LP unfolds it becomes apparent where Syl’s influences lie. ‘Teenage News’ opens proceedings in fine up-tempo fashion, this version a faithful re-run of the Dolls’ version. ‘Every Boy and Every Girl’ is 60’s Brit Pop. The breathless standout ‘14th Street Beat’ is Syl’s ode to the Big Apple. ‘Deeper and Deeper’ and ‘Ain’t Got No Home’ are Ol’ 55 or Sha Na Na territory. The only let down is album closer ‘Tonight’, a dull wailing sax instrumental that tries to conjure some atmosphere but goes nowhere. Considering the resurgence of 60’s flavoured power pop coming out at the time (The Knack, Rockpile, etc) it’s a shame that this LP never got the attention it deserved. Pure charm. *Since the demise of the Dolls, Syl guested and co-wrote tracks on a couple of David Johansen LP’s, and formed Sylvain Sylvain and the Teenage News around 1979. In the months that followed he hit the studio, the fruits being the aforementioned self-titled LP, before forming Syl Sylvain and the Teardrops – who cut one self titled album, again for RCA. He resurrected his independent label, Sing Sing back in 1983, cutting ‘Out With The Wrong Woman’. During the 80’s he occasionally jumped on stage with Johnny Thunders, and played guitar with Johnny’s band on his 1984 revenge tour of Sweden. More recently Syl produced the 1991 Motorcycle Boy album ‘Popsicle’ and guested on Dramarama’s 1993 release titled ‘Hi-Fi-Sci-Fi’.

(Archive Source: Vicious Kitten Fanzine)

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