Music

album review | ROCK

Billy Idol, ‘Kings & Queens of the Underground’

Remember when a sneering, spiky-haired Billy Idol was all the rage, throwing a fingerless glove-clad fist in the air with a rebel yell? Idol does, and on his first album in nearly a decade, “Kings & Queens of the Underground,” he wants to reminisce. (Presumably he plows similar ground in his new memoir, naturally titled “Dancing With Myself.”) The 11-track collection looks back through the mist of the “Eyes Without a Face” video to reflect on when Idol was the toast of MTV, the good times, bad times, and self-medication. There are perfectly acceptable, arena rock-style tracks, a groovy electro-rocker, and one sneering, punkish jam. Many songs traffic in nostalgia, including the “Rebel Yell”-ish “Postcards of the Past.” The title track is the oddest. It’s as if Idol stumbled into a Renaissance Faire, answered someone’s questions about his old hits, then decided to record it, surveying his lazy, crazy, drug-hazy Sunset Strip days to the accompaniment of flutes and lutes. (Out now)

SARAH RODMAN


Essential“One Breath Away”

Billy Idol plays the Orpheum Theatre Jan. 31.

Loading comments...
Real journalists. Real journalism. Subscribe to The Boston Globe today.