The band's first show together since the Seventies at Morrissey's Meltdown Festival leads to a standing ovation...

The NEW YORK DOLLS have played their first live show together since the Seventies.

The band reformed at the special request of Morrissey, who is a lifelong fan of the group. The show took place as part of the Meltdown festival on London’s South Bank.

However, the line-up that appeared at the London Royal Festival Hall (June 16) was augmented with a number of session musicians. Original guitarist Johnny Thunders and drummer Jerry Nolan died in 1991. Nolan’s place was taken by Libertines star Gary Powell.

The trio that remain, David Johansen, Sylvain Sylvain and Arthur ‘Killer’ Kane, looked overwhelmed by the ovation they got on taking to the stage.

Running through a set of their own songs, including ‘Personality Crisis’, ‘Jet Boy’ and ‘Trash’, the band also played a cover of the soul standard ‘Piece Of My Heart’ and a version of Johnny Thunders’ ‘You Can’t Put Your Arms Round A Memory’, dedicated to their deceased bandmates. The two-song encore was greeted with a standing ovation.

At the end, the group thanked Morrissey for bringing the band over, and asked for three cheers for the curator of the festival. They explained that the UK had always been one of their favourite places because Melody Maker journalist Roy Hollingsworth had flown over to see the band before they had a deal in the UK, which gave them the opportunity to come to London for the first time.

There was one downside for the band however, a spokesperson for the venue told NME.COM that a lyric book with “huge sentimental value” belonging to the band was taken from the stage at the end of the show, which they’d like returned.

The band would like the book returned to the venue, and no further questions will be asked.

Meltdown takes place annually and started life as a classical event. Each year a prominent or influential member the music world is approached to curate, and as time has progressed the festival has become more rock orientated.

Previous directors include Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry,

David Bowie and John Peel.

NME.COM has launched a special Morrissey site.

As well as exclusive up-to-the-minute news and reviews from the

Meltdown festival – we also have an exclusive Morrissey gallery, classic Smiths reviews from the NME archive, and much, much more.

To visit the site click here.

This year’s Meltdown continues with:

An Audience With Alan Bennett (Queen Elizabeth Hall, 17)

Ennio Marchetto (Purcell Room, 17)

The New York

Dolls (Royal Festival Hall 18)

Ennio Marchetto (Purcell Room, 18)

Jane Birkin / Ari Up (Royal Festival Hall, 19)

Ennio Marchetto (Purcell Room, 19)

Nancy Sinatra (Royal Festival Hall, 20)

Lypsinka! The Boxed Set (Queen Elizabeth Hall, 23-24)

An acoustic evening with Gene (Queen Elizabeth Hall, 25)


(Royal Festival Hall, 25-26)

Gorecki’s Symphony No. 3 (Symphony Of Sorrowful Songs) featuring Yvonne

Kenny (Royal Festival Hall, 27)

For tickets contact the Meltdown festival on 08703 808 300 or click here.