Lou Reed-Transformer.

2 01 2012

If you cannot see that Lou Reed is one of the greatest singer/song-writers ever, then you are a fool. I’ve ignored the fact that his record with Metallica was one of the worst things to have ever happened. Obviously there are worse musical disasters, but seeing as its Lou Reed; all is forgiven.

There is no doubt at all that Transformer is one of the best albums ever created. From start to finish, it is just a sheer magnificent work of art. It just marks the end of the Velvet Underground (sadly) and the start of something equally are perfect and bloody influential. I know a debut record is probably THE record to cement an artists’ career, but with someone like Lou Reed- all he had done with Velvet Underground was enough to put him in the position as being one of the greats. His second solo record, Transformer just has everything a record needs to have.

The way he tells stories in his songs is something not many have mastered the art of. There have been very few storytellers of this level. Bob Dylan being one of them. Artists such as Captain Beefheart, Townes Van Zandt, Tom Waits- they are all excellent songwriters who have evidently influenced so many. Personally, I hold Lou Reed as highly as I hold them all. He has this stunning way of making you feel you are part of everything he is singing about on this record.

I absolutley love the bones of Make Up. I love how Lou can make you picture everything in this song. It is full of wonderful imagery. It’s more than a song; it’s a bloody wonderful piece of literature. Most probably love Perfect Day. I love how sarcastic it comes across, but for me- it will always be Make Up. I love everything about it. If this record was a woman, I’d have a civil partnership with it. It’s just one of the best albums ever made. You can tell I love it, right?

If you’ve never heard this record before (and why on Earth haven’t you!?) then every time you listen to something else, you will probably compare it to this. You’ll die a bit inside because you know NOTHING will reach the level of excellence that Transformer is on. It’s got to be one of the most influential albums ever made. It makes me wish I was a decent writer so I could create something a little bit as fascinating as this. It’s so pure, and touches on subjects many prefer to shy away from- mainly because they are small minded.

Transformer makes you wish you were in New York during the 70s, just floating around the city taking everything in. Every little detail. From the stunning cross dressers to the Punk kids waiting to lose their mind to their favourite band. You don’t get that from music anymore. The only band to possess this kind of innocence mixed with brutal tones are of course, The Kills. No one else has that edge or that sound that makes you feel that way. It’s just a flippin’ fantastic emotion to have when you listen to music. If you can find it, hold onto it. If you’re still looking for it- just listen to Transformer. You’ll find it all there. It will always be there in this record. It is perfect and timeless.

What I love about Lou Reed is that, he makes you feel part of everything he is singing. He makes you feel as if you are with him during Perfect Day- feeding animals in the zoo. He makes you imagine hitting someone you don’t like with a flower, or avoiding them in the street in Vicious. Walk On The Wild Side, bloody hell. This one, you can just see everything. You can see the men turn into women for the night in this song. Pulling up their tights, applying make up whilst riding the Subway. It’s all there; and you see it oh so clearly. You know, many gay people may turn to Lady Gaga as their gay icon with her songs. Fuck that. I cannot relate. The homosexual references in this record by Lou Reed are ones that really grab my soul, and make me feel proud to be gay. Not that I need a record or musician to do that-all comes from within. But, Lou Reed’s music has always provided a sense of comfort for me. His voice is so rugged but calming. Whether his solo work or Velvet Underground; I always feel part of the world I want to be part of. I don’t belong in this era.

What I’m trying to get at here, to anyone who reads this, is that Transformer is quite simply brilliant. The production, the music, the lyrics, his voice, the background singers- everything is just perfect. It is an honest and open record. You don’t have to be part of a certain scene to fall in love with this record. It’s evidently obvious that this record is one of the greats.



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