Saturday, July 2, 2011

Lou Reed - Transformer

Lou Reed - Transformer
Published in 1972

I have determined that July will be "Artists I Love, But Have Never Listened To Their Albums" month, which is not only pithy, but also concise.  I believe that there is some wit in there too.  And, at least in this paragraph, there is a bit of sarcasm as well.  So there is that.

This month is devoted to expanding my musical horizons by picking and choosing things that I already love and writing about them.  "How is this different than any other month, Matt?" you might be asking.  I don't know.

Anyway, on to Lou Reed.  Jesus Christ, I love Lou Reed.  I distinctly remember listening to Walk on the Wild Side as a kid, and knowing that I loved this guy.  Every time I hear his distinctive voice, I am just re-enthralled by it.  So it is somewhat surprising that this is the first time that I have ever heard a full album.

If I had a time machine, I'd do some interesting things with it.  Of course, first choice is to go into the future, download some sort of incredible weapons training, acquire a light saber, and go back in time and extinct a dinosaur singlehandedly, but after doing irreparable damage to an ecosystem, I think I would just hop around from time to time and try to find a good concert.  Yes, I'd be the doctor if I could, but who wouldn't?

What time would draw a lot of my attention?  Well, I'm glad that you asked, 1970's New York, because it is definitely you.  See some incredible bands, stop John Lennon from getting shot, you know, the regular stuff.  I'd also love to see some classic TV, and the birth of SNL, but that is a different post.

Lou Reed is just a fantastic talent who I believe to be too good for this world, which is good, because he is otherworldly in the extreme.  He has the ability to milk his voice for the most desperate connective voice, following it with a detached drone, and never sound like he is trying.  It's fantastically well done, and smart as hell.

His otherworldly voice and style is just one reason that I like him.  I also find his songwriting to be powerful without being overblown, and there are light stakes throughout his songs.  He finds subjects that make a difference to him, and he speaks clearly and truly about them.  His inspiration is on display, and his ability in the weird field is second to none.

You should listen to this album, it's fantastically well done.  However, it is an optional album.  I hope to someday meet Lou Reed and tell him how much I like his music, but if I don't at least I finally listened to one of his albums.

"The fuck did I do?"

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