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Author Topic: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1  (Read 3368 times)

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Bubba McBubba

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6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« on: July 25, 2012, 08:17:41 PM »

Although my favorite band for a long time, the VU catalog has already been mined to what I thought was exhaustion.  Turns out that barrel had a false bottom, as a six disc reissue of the album is due out October 1.  Never mind the first two discs are the same as the double-disc reissue from the past decade.  Or that another disc is Nico's "Chelsea Girl".  New material includes two discs of a concert in Columbus (!) and another disc of demos (some of which are from the legendary acetate discovered a couple of years back).  Anywho, I'm sure I am doomed to buy this:



But instead of yet another incarnation of VU & Nico (which, though rightfully placed on a pedestal by the music community, has never been my personal favorite of the band's), could we possibly get something like the Rhino Handmade set of The Stooges' "Fun House", but where we would hear every second of the recording of WL/WH and 3rd?
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Zafer Kaya

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Re: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2012, 10:13:37 PM »

Ridiculous.

I blame Obama for stealing Moe Tucker's Social Security.

cyclone

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Re: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2012, 10:53:26 PM »

As a big fan of the John Cale-era of the band, &Nico ranks as my second favorite VU record (after WL/WH, which is undoubtedly a top ten all-time for me).  Having no interest in the box set, I'd rather address your latter point.  I completely agree with the thesis that this is a mega-canonical album that needs no such extra treatment.  But regarding the next two records, I have never understood the internet's re-appreciation of the self-titled third album that seems to have surfaced in recent years.  It's a very good album, as all four are (no, I'm not counting the Doug Yule solo album disguised as a Velvets record).  In fact, it has a few of my favorite VU tracks, notably What Goes On.  I'll even concede that on the bootlegs, the live band was better when they were just a rock 'n roll band in that era without Cale's viola and the pseudo-Warhol/avant-garde pretension. For the life of me though, I'll just never understand the fans who think of the s/t as the band's magnum opus.  Conversely, I can completely understand people not digging my own favorite in WL/WH.  But while I love both the s/t and Loaded, it's just hard for me to imagine someone finding that material vastly superior to the early stuff.  Of course, like I said early, I do completely agree with you that any of those latter albums do deserve to be noticed more than ever at this point rather than more &Nico praise.
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last.fm/user/cyclone23

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Bubba McBubba

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Re: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2012, 08:32:34 PM »

Having no interest in the box set, I'd rather address your latter point.  But regarding the next two records, I have never understood the internet's re-appreciation of the self-titled third album that seems to have surfaced in recent years.  It's a very good album, as all four are (no, I'm not counting the Doug Yule solo album disguised as a Velvets record).  In fact, it has a few of my favorite VU tracks, notably What Goes On.  I'll even concede that on the bootlegs, the live band was better when they were just a rock 'n roll band in that era without Cale's viola and the pseudo-Warhol/avant-garde pretension. For the life of me though, I'll just never understand the fans who think of the s/t as the band's magnum opus.  Conversely, I can completely understand people not digging my own favorite in WL/WH. 

I can't really explain why 3rd is my all-time favorite album.  It simply resonates with me more deeply than any other recording.  Admittedly it has a major dog of a track with "The Murder Mystery", which I rarely play.  But the rest of it is so intimate that it is like Yule, Reed and Tucker are right next to you and speaking to you directly.  Also, I am talking about the "closet mix" version, which was my first exposure to the album and which has a vastly superior version of "Some Kinda Love".  I was not aware of any reappraisal of the album on 'net, but I am glad to hear that, as the album has been a bit underrated in the past.  I'm not saying it should be everybody's favorite album, or even their favorite VU album, but I just hope more people give it a chance.

But I also hope more people will try to appreciate WL/WH, but I think that is (despite being my second-most fave VU album) their most challenging work.  I think most people see "Sister Ray" is over 17 minutes and that turns them off immediately.  Funny how those people will miss out on the darkly gorgeous "Here She Comes Now" (which would have fit in well on 3rd, no?) or the doo-wop tribute title track.  Personally, my favorite part of the album is Reed's solos in "I Heard Her Call My Name", which are still as thrilling and innovative as the first time I heard them.
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cyclone

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Re: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2012, 11:24:06 PM »

But I also hope more people will try to appreciate WL/WH, but I think that is (despite being my second-most fave VU album) their most challenging work.  I think most people see "Sister Ray" is over 17 minutes and that turns them off immediately.  Funny how those people will miss out on the darkly gorgeous "Here She Comes Now" (which would have fit in well on 3rd, no?) or the doo-wop tribute title track.  Personally, my favorite part of the album is Reed's solos in "I Heard Her Call My Name", which are still as thrilling and innovative as the first time I heard them.

This got me thinking, and it's odd thinking about the disparity between big fans and those who might be familiar with the first record but none of those after.  I say so because while every music fans knows the infamous Warhol cover and probably at least a singular track from the record (I first discovered "Heroine" back when I was still in my cookie cutter classic rock phase), I'd wager that there's quite a lot of people who actually aren't too familiar with the whole record.  My current and last girlfriends had both never even heard Venus In Furs before.  And I'd say that if I were to drill a lot of passionate music fan friends who would claim to recognize the influence of the Velvets, they would draw similar blanks.  Perhaps Femme Fatale would be recognized, but I bet that would be about it.  But or those of us who are big VU fans, we're pretty obsessive over not only the studio efforts but the special mixes, bootlegs, vinyl rips, etc.  So in conclusion I can't help but think that maybe the "casual" Velvets fan is just that, very casual indeed.

Regarding WL/WH specifically, my love for that album runs so deep that I could spend a lot of posts writing about it.  It is, as you say, by far their least accessible, but I think you'd also have to add The Gift in with Sister Ray as far as that new listener hesitation goes.  I love both tracks, including the former quite a bit more than most people I know.  There's no doubt though that it could have maybe benefited from being spaced somewhere rather than the follow-up to the excellent title track opener, which despite the ending shouldn't send new listeners packing.  Of course, we should also be mentioning the album's explicitly dark lyrical themes and subject matter, though when I first experienced the album, I don't even think I paid attention to what songs like The Gift or Lady Godiva's Operation were even about.  And yes, the guitar on I Heard Her Call My Name is still one of my favorite parts in music ever.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 11:29:26 PM by cyclone »
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Bubba McBubba

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Re: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2012, 09:32:35 PM »

Still not sure if I am going to spring for the 6 disc VU & Nico CD set, but Sundazed has an intriguing 5 LP set coming out on the same day:



What I find most interesting about this set is it has a mono pressing of WL/WH (which was only a rumor until a British promo copy turned up a couple of years back) and a mono 3rd, which I never knew was even mixed in mono.  I am waiting for Sundazed to reply to an e-mail I have about that mono 3rd, whether a mix was done back in the 60's or if a new mix was created for this set.
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Bubba McBubba

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Re: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2012, 10:07:48 PM »

What I find most interesting about this set is the mono 3rd, which I never knew was even mixed in mono.  I am waiting for Sundazed to reply to an e-mail I have about that mono 3rd, whether a mix was done back in the 60's or if a new mix was created for this set.

Received an e-mail from Sundazed today, clarifying the origin of the mono mix of 3rd:

Thanks for your email and interest in our upcoming VU set. It was issued as a rare promo LP only in mono - sent to radio upon first release, only a few known copies... the "closet mix".
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cyclone

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Re: 6 Disc (yes, 6) reissue of VU & Nico October 1
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2012, 11:36:21 PM »

That's pretty cool about the mono mix.  You definitely need to post that box up in the vinyl thread if you end up buying it. 

Sundazed is great and l might sound hypocritical since I own about a dozen of their LPs, but I don't typically agree with the prices they generally charge considering (and I'm speaking mostly of individual records here) the pressings are usually nothing special and the cover/art is normally just an exacto copy of the original.  Of course there are notable exceptions ... I finally got their reissue of C.A. Quintet's Trip Thru Hell and there was rather cool packaging with a full-length band interview that took up the entire inner gatefold.  But overall, not so much, which is why I disagree with the $19 price tag on pretty much all of their standard records. 
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last.fm/user/cyclone23

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