Nice. But back to the headline. As you probably know, every article about Lou Reed has to have "Walk on the Wild Side" in its headline, and this most recent story is no exception. But they have twisted things a bit because it is not Reed who is talking a walk on the wild side (or mild side or wilder side) but his album instead. Here it is: "Dark Classic Takes a Walk on the Wild Side." I love how completely meaningless that is. First of all, can an album take a walk? And second, nothing in the review suggests that this version of Berlin is wilder than the original. Nevertheless, "Dark Classic Takes a Walk on the Wild Side" is the editor's final decision.
Every song, even the already wondrous Caroline Says II, was an improvement on the recorded version and the sound was the finest I've heard at any venue in years. Most brave and most incongruous was not merely the brass and string sections, but the 12-strong New London Children's Choir, whose angelic vocals, particularly on the closing Sad Song, acted as an innocent counterpart to Reed's tales of darkness, squalor and violence.
As ever, Reed ran to form by not speaking during the set (some narrative to a tale sorely lacking it might have been a benison), but the troupe did craft an encore of non-Berlin classics: a raucous Sweet Jane; an almost unbearably gorgeous Satellite Of Love, where bassist Fernando Saunders sang one verse and the choir another, and Walk On The Wild Side which fooled the censor in 1973 and, in 2007, still sounds subversive with children on backing vocals. Mesmerising.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
The Evening Standard has an article about Lou Reed's Berlin revival (which I reviewed too). We'll get to the headline in a minute, but first, a bit of the article: