This is reed's most socially consious album to date,also the album is not overy-produced,and the arrangement's are not layered with alot of instrumentation and effects.Although his spoken word delivery is at a faster pace for those who are not overly familiar with Lou Reed,It may take repeated listening to catch ever phrase of every song on the album.It has a strong driving rock and roll feel to it on the faster numbers,However on the slower softer tracks,the band sounds more melodic.Some reviewers have not been so complimentary to Reed's lyrics,suggesting that he come's off sounding preachy and self-righteous,Instead he comes off giving an intimate portrait of the darker side of life.Reed could just as easily spoken of the affluence of new york city,given that he's not exactly a poor musician,But Reed has a strong sense of community,and a concern for all the downtrodden in society.He paints a mental picture in your mind of new york city,as well as urban conditions in most any large city.Reed has assembled a trio of musicians along with him including Mike Ratke on lead guitar,Rob Wasserman on upright bass and Fred Maher on drums,Which adds a backdrop to Reed's visual lyric's,However ,there are a couple of tracks on the album where Reed's lyrics seem to run off the page,Because the songs appear to be overwritten,and not simplified enough.Example:On "Dime store mystery",The duality of nature\Godly nature\human nature\ splits the soul\Fully human\fully divine and divided.The great immortal soul split into pieces\whirling pieces."The begining of a great adventure"
Some wizened toothless clod,some gibbering old fool,Some senile old fart suggest too many examples to describe himself as well as other events and situations.This is the only problem i have with the album ,Otherwise ,this is an excellent listen for any rock enthusiast.
This is a great disk,But if you can find a live video cassette of the album,I would recommend it along with the album.In my opinion,the live version is more free flowing and relaxed than the CD.
Sonics: Grungy and Dense
Performance: Excellent and Strong.