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Certified gold by the RIAA. (9/97)
After the best part of a decade spent adrift of past glories, Lou Reed looked to his immediate environment for inspiration and produced with his most acclaimed work since The Velvet Underground disbanded. The narrator of songs such as "Sunset Boulevard" and "Good Evening Mr Waldheim" though, couldn't be more different to the drug-addled nihilist who wrote "Waiting For The Man". In New York, drugs are still part of everyday life, but Reed's spleen is targeted at the forces responsible for such social malaise--none of which would matter, of course, were it not for the stripped down garage sound which substantially loosens the mood. Doubters may suggest we be spared from another reformed rebel turned concerned parent, but if there's anything objectionable about New York, it's the regrettable mullet hairstyle sported by its author--a far greater crime than any that recur in his lyrics. --Peter Paphides
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Top Customer Reviews
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.Read more ›
Song for song, the lyrics reveal an incredible landscape of social, political, economic, and more musings. New York City, the greatest city in the world, is used as a city representative of the world in all these facets. The spoken word is definitely the strength on this album, although I enjoy some of the guitar riffs as well.
True, if you're into gimmicky music or sing-along pop, you'll find nothing like that here. (Although I enjoy singing along to "Strawman" and "There is no time"). But if you just sit and listen to the words, you'll be drawn in. It may take you a few listens to start to appreciate it, that's what happened with me. As you listen more and more, you start to piece together what is being said and come to a full understanding .
It's definitely not a feelgood album! Bitter, sarcastic, accusing, very blunt . . .no parables here! Straight and to the point. At times even dryly humorous. You'll hear preachings on issues such as racism, wealth, greed, and violence to name just a few.
If you appreciate quality music and don't have this, get it. It's a classic!
New York has some ripping tracks on it, some of them have the same urgency and encompasing get up and go that the VU years had like "busload of faith".
Straw Man is a huge track with so much pent up agression, Dirty Boulavard is in my oppinion one of the best social commentary tracks around.
If you loved The Velvet Underground you will like this, if you love this you must must must buy the Velvet Underground albums.
Most recent customer reviews
Great album! Scathing New York stories to be listened to from beginning to end. It really flows.Published 2 months ago by randi littlefair
Songwriters ought to stick to songs and stay away from social commentary. That doesn't mean they can't write about a social issue that irks them, they should--they are human, after... Read morePublished on Nov. 12 2003 by Rocco Dormarunno
this is a great 5 star cd due to one thing and one thing only, the passion and dreary clear landscape that Lou Reed was able to paint with his brush of reality programming that we... Read morePublished on Aug. 13 2003 by Hutch
It doesn't sound as good as 'Berlin' or 'Rock and Roll Animal'. The band isn't as good. It's not as steady as VU and Nico. Read morePublished on July 19 2003 by John Doe
The inside cover says that this album should be listened to from start to finish "in one 58 minute (14 songs!) sitting as though it were a book or a movie. Read morePublished on June 15 2003 by Chris Adams
Lou Reed's "New York" is a true masterpiece, one of those rare albums that it can be truly said belongs in any serious music-lover's collection. Read morePublished on April 5 2003 by mutineer10
I discovered this album watching the half hour alternative video show they used to have on MTV. I'm glad I discovered this little gem of an album. Read morePublished on Nov. 21 2002 by Ken Bailey
This collection of 14 sketches represents one of the most powerful song cycles of Reed's career. On New York he discusses the wider world rather than personal concerns for a... Read morePublished on Sept. 22 2002 by Peter Uys