Cherie Currie

Beauty's Only Skin Deep

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Cherie Currie's disappointing (and only) solo album was slicker and more pop-oriented than might have been expected from someone who'd just left the Runaways, even if the Runaways never were as raw and punky as some proponents of their legend claim. Instead it's rather mainstream late-'70s pop/rock, with only the slightest of occasional new wave influences, with Runaways instigator Kim Fowley still aboard as co-producer. Fowley co-wrote a few of the songs too, though Currie herself had disappointingly slim input in that regard, contributing to just two tracks as co-author; guitarist Steven T., in fact, took more songwriting credits than anyone else. On some cuts (like "Call Me at Midnight"), she sounded as if she was trying to be a pop Patti Smith; on others, like an updater of some of the more superficial aspects of sunny '60s California pop; and on the worst, like a Debby Boone with a smaller production budget. Only on "Young and Wild" does she sound too assertive, though it's not as wild and crazy as the title portends. Afflicted with dated and somewhat dull-sounding late-'70s production (with a few strange squiggly quasi-space age electronics thrown in), it's a confused and somewhat dispirited effort, though it has some mildly catchy tunes, like "Love at First Sight" (on which she duets with twin sister Marie Currie).

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