Picks and Pans Review: Vanessa Paradis

updated 01/18/1993 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 01/18/1993 AT 01:00 AM EST

Vanessa Paradis

Paradis, the pouty, 19-year-old Parisian pop star currently appearing in Coco perfume ads, and Lenny Kravitz, a man who never met a '60s riff he didn't like, have teamed up to produce—surprise—a highly engaging record. As songwriter and producer, Kravitz gives the breathy-voiced singer (who scored her first French hit at 14 and makes her English language debut here) a cushion of finely tuned, charmingly inconsequential fluff. Whether you'll enjoy the record depends on whether you think comparing a song to the Monkees or Lulu is a compliment. The tinkling "Sunday Mondays" all but cries out for Davy Jones to pipe in, and "Be My Baby" and "Natural High" warrant love beads and a healthy layer of white lipstick.

But it's all done with an élan that undercuts the obvious thievery. Kudos go to Paradis's take on Lou Reed's classic "I'm Waiting for the Man." Her wide-eyed innocence is such that, for a second, you almost think she's actually waiting for a date, not a drug dealer. (Polydor)

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