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on 6 November 2016
'Valley of the Dolls', Generation X's much derided, Ian Hunter-produced follow-up to one of the best albums of 1978, has stood up better than most thought. This is what happens when you have the gall to try and follow a classic. I seem to recall the title track as single not impressing me much on vomit coloured vinyl; but to be fair, I was a dreck-worshipping, Plug-like school-kid when it came out, and not the expert on absolutely everything that I am now. Much sneering at 'VOTD's nasty rockism followed over the years, mainly due to Derwood's trad (but superbly ferocious) guitar playing, and Idol's lip-curling Americanisms, already in full swing (Notice how the album cover now has 'Featuring Billy Idol' tacked on. Nasty.).

'King Rocker' is still gross - but elsewhere, the likes of 'Friday's Angels' and the album's barracking opener, 'Running With The Boss Sound' hit the mark with venom. 'Kenny Silvers' is an excellent sequel to 'Kiss Me Deadly' - Even the title track sounds better in an album context.
Even when we moved towards long mac territory, there was still a place for the likes of 'VOTD'. It needs to be aligned with Skids and Ruts, rather than the 'old' old guard, tho the punk edge is still plainly there to see.

At least they didn't go all brassy / girlie backing singers / reggae on us ~ seen as 'progress' at the time, but looking well suspect now. Generation X stuck to what they knew : hard-assed r'n'r. Sure, it sounds a bit 'Sticky Fingers' in places, and the Hunter influence is obvious, which is maybe partly why the punklet critics of the day gave 'VOTD' such a walloping.

It wasn't til Idol went solo that everything went pear-shaped. He should've re-invented himself as an Adam-style sex-buffoon and had a good old laugh at himself and the music industry instead of soaring Stateside and wasting years making risible, fat stad-rock. It's as if he took the criticism on board the plane with him, and lazily carved a career out of it.
The first two Generation X albums are it as far as Idol's r'n'r legacy is concerned.
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on 15 September 2012
I was on a nostalgia trip recently and couldn't resist this double pack, although I still have these on vinyl I don't have a turntable at present. The 2nd album was always my favourite of the two because of the stories within the songs. Well having not heard this stuff in 20yrs+ I was amazed at how listenable it all still is and the audio is great too, not at all muddy or flat. The guitar work is really far far better than I recalled, they were a tight band full stop and already had plenty of form before they formed Generation X. With hindsight and some growing up to reflect upon I hear so many new things in these two albums that I just couldn't have appreciated at the time. There's a spot of 60s' pop influence in there that I never heard before. I always loved their cover of Shakin' all over, a b-side, and it is reproduced fantastically too; me and my daughters were all jumping around to it.

The innovators of punk always had more to offer than the 2nd wave of punk in my opinion. Generation X were always about a bit of glam and swagger, unlike the majority of 2nd-wave bands that followed. Pints and pints of beer and wearing a mohican does not a punk make. Generation X were there at the beginning and don't get the credit they deserve, folks always remember the Pistols and the Clash (who I also like).

At this price you could test my theory.
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on 12 April 2017
The first album is the better of the two,,Valley of the dolls is a ok album,some good songs on both albums,some extra tracks on both cds,,worth buying,good delivery time
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on 22 February 2018
Very good
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on 12 April 2016
Love gen x from being a young punk..as soon as i saw this i had to have it...some great songs on it and it brought back some good memories...thanks
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VINE VOICEon 18 November 2002
Just received this great cd from Amazon and am thrilled with it!
I've been aticipating a cd release for this LP for ages and am so glad it's arrived.
The best thing for me about this album is that it reinstates Billy Idol as a great rock performer and writer and has rescued him from the "gary glitters retarded nephew" image that he has made for himself in the states where his musical output has,in my opinion been crap.
However this album is not just William as it features some great guitar playing from Derwood and a good solid rhythm section with Tony james (whose song writing seriously outweighs his bass playing!)and Mark Laff kicking up a storm.One of the strongpoints of this collection for me seems that it almost captures a snapshot of an era where many of the erstwhile punks were stretching their wings to fly off to more testing ventures and also personally for me it reminds me very much of a time in my life when i wasnt such a cynical so and so!
There are many excellent tracks within including three great singles "King Rocker" "Valley of the dolls" and the underated "Fridays angels" which bring back memories of trips around my home town record stores trying to hunt down the best picture sleeve,or scarce coloured vinyl editions!A lot of my friends after Punks untimely demise turned to the NWOBHM to get their kicks and I guess that although a long way from being a heavy metal album this is a tad more trad rock than their earlier incarnation as punks pretty boy glam band and i think thats probably the appeal for me. There are so many good tracks on here but my personal favorites are "Paradise West One" and "Valley of the Dolls" another great thing is the inclusion of Lennons "Gimme some truth" with what appears to be producer Ian Hunters reprising the ad libbing at the end of Motts "All the young dudes" and also a stirling workout of "shakin All over".Anyway to sum up a classic album from a very underated and at times sneered at band of punk rock glamour boys.
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on 12 November 2014
Had the album when it first came out! Brought back some good memory's!
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on 20 September 2016
the cd's were loose it looks like it was stepped on.Great music though.
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on 2 July 2015
Billy Idol Mean and moody
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on 16 April 2018
This album is amazing musically and lyrically, I think it captures that unique English "angst and bleakness" of that time perfectly, I will possibly ruffle a few feathers by stating that, in my option, this album is far better that their previous effort in terms of production and musicianship.
There's not a dud track on this and Ian Hunter's production is perfect, he understands and relates to what stories the songs are telling.
If you don't have this is your collection, buy it immediately!
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