'Cause I Sez So

'Cause I Sez So

This second album from the two surviving members of the New York Dolls — singer David Johansen, guitarist Syl Sylvain — and three able-bodied rockers was produced by Todd Rundgren, whose main job seems to be to encourage the band to explore as many stylistic turns as possible. The title cut kicks with the fury of the Dolls of old, but elsewhere Johansen finds himself south of the border for “Temptation to Exist,” in the Caribbean for the reggae take on the old classic “Trash,” and somewhere deep in the south for the blues-rock of “This Is Ridiculous.” At this late date, it’s hard to imagine anyone expecting a revival of the band’s ‘70s glory days. But one does get plenty of the glorious in-your-face attitude from Johansen that made him one of rock’s most impressive lead singers thirty-something years ago. Time has not mellowed him, but rather given him a sense of lone purpose as one who still believes in the music’s sassy powers.

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