Essential Lou Reed

by Kevin Orton
Comments (6)

Love or hate him, Lou Reed was one of the most influential Rock artists of the 20th century. His work with the Velvets and Transformer may be the pinnacle. But the story doesn't end there. While he certainly had his ups and downs, he came back with a vengeance with New York. Yet his last few albums were criminally ignored or completely misunderstood. Twilight Reeling, Ecstasy and Lulu are all masterpieces. Ranked in order of personal preference. Click an album below to read a review

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My top 3 would be:
1. Velvet Underground & Nico
2. Transformer
3. Loaded

I need to spend some time discovering more of these though. I love Berlin as well, not sure why it sometimes gets called 'the most depressing album ever'. Maybe we should...

My top 3 would be:
1. Velvet Underground & Nico
2. Transformer
3. Loaded

I need to spend some time discovering more of these though. I love Berlin as well, not sure why it sometimes gets called 'the most depressing album ever'. Maybe we should do a list for that?

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Most Depressing Albums List! Great idea! I'll get on it! I'm your man, I love depressing albums. And Berlin would certainly be on that list. I mean listen to The Kids! The children bawling at the end of it for their mommy. And that line in Sad...

Most Depressing Albums List! Great idea! I'll get on it! I'm your man, I love depressing albums. And Berlin would certainly be on that list. I mean listen to The Kids! The children bawling at the end of it for their mommy. And that line in Sad Song, "I'm gonna stop wasting my time, somebody else would have broken both of her arms"...Oh my god...Sally Can't Dance might be the runner up. That said, the live Take No Prisoners is his funniest album. His patter is hilarious. As for exploring others, Blue Mask is a must. Robert Quine's guitar is insane on it. Also, Ecstasy is truly a masterpiece along with New York. Lulu is not for the faint of heart but in 20 years time they'll hail it as a masterpiece.

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Love Lou. He was one of a kind.

My Top 10:

1. VU (Self-Titled)
2. VU & Nico
3. New York
4. Coney Island Baby
5. Loaded
6. WL/WH
7. Transformer
8. Street Hassle
9. Berlin
10. Legendary Hearts (guilty pleasure)

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Thank you for putting the self titled as number 1. It for sure is.

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Hmmmmm. Confused by this list. Its in chronological order, so I'm guessing it's not "the best" unless you're stating he got worse over time. But I definitely disagree with your statement that Lulu is a masterpiece. Lulu is garbage, and even he...

Hmmmmm. Confused by this list. Its in chronological order, so I'm guessing it's not "the best" unless you're stating he got worse over time. But I definitely disagree with your statement that Lulu is a masterpiece. Lulu is garbage, and even he knew that.

A lot of folks just stick with the tried and true VU & Nico as the best ever thing he did, and that's so untrue. The self titled album is my favorite release by him, and the VU has a perfect discography so there's no real bad answer for "best VU record" but a lot of folks just default to Nico. List is incomplete too, as the long lost VU record from 1985 deserves recognition as it's pretty damn great too. Could make a case for Another View too.

New York and Blue Mask are really the only 80s records worth your time. The self titled Lou Reed record is nothing special, but Transformer and Berlin are top notch.

As my favorite band of all time, I can talk extensively about the Velvets, and I take lots of shame in admitting that Lou Reeds solo output comes no where close to the highs of VU. There's some good stuff scattered, but it's pretty hit or miss.

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Chronological. I personally have trouble with the notion of the "best". I don't think there really is such a thing. But you bring up a good point. It might be more interesting if I listed them according to my preference. Will amend. Thanks for...

Chronological. I personally have trouble with the notion of the "best". I don't think there really is such a thing. But you bring up a good point. It might be more interesting if I listed them according to my preference. Will amend. Thanks for the comment!

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