Friday, June 8, 2012

The Velvet Underground & Nico

In the history of Rock Music The Velvet Underground & Nico are considered to be one of the most influential bands ever, their first album The Velvet Underground & Nico  was recorded in 1966 and released in 1967. The album was produced by Andy Warhol whose his banana art design was used for the cover, and even though Andy Warhol had no musical background his pop-art attitude would propel the group to the top of Rock ‘n’ roll world.

It was Andy Warhol who introduced Nico to the group that consisted of Lou Reed, Sterling Morrison on guitars, John Cale, Maclise on drums who was later replaced by Maureen Tucker their music became a sonic confrontation, and Cale proclaimed that the group wanted to annoy people. The music of The Velvet Underground & Nico had plenty guitar feedback, unyielding percussions, and Cale’s contribution on the Viola, Bass, and Piano gave the band their signature sound. Combined with music and art they became the first-ever 'alternative' band.

According to Anthony Carew’s article on Alternative music The Velvet Underground & Nico were a group with lots of moving parts from the tuneless moans of Nico and John Cale’s piano riffs to the sound of Indian Raga, and the guitars weaving in and out of the songs they weaved together their experimental music. They considered their sound to be much different than that of the West Coast with its “drugged-up suburban kids” thinking they will be saved by using hallucinogenic and psychedelics drugs. After their first album’s disappointing sales their relationship with Andy Warhol fell apart and the band fired Warhol and said goodbye to Nico and recorded their second album with Tom Wilson as their producer. The band was plagued by personal upheaval and financial struggle and soon would disband.

I found this album very hard to listen to with the music going in all directions it was hard for me to stay focus on the beat, and made me feel like I was tripping. Some of the songs on this album were tolerable, but mostly I had a hard time focusing while listening.

1 comment:

  1. Laman,

    First of all, thank you for a very well written and informative post. It’s obvious that you did good research and put a lot of time and effort into analyzing The Velvet Underground and Nico album. I can appreciate the fact that you didn’t really enjoy the album, as it is incredibly strange – even for today – but you still show the record and band the respect they deserve. You say it felt like you were “tripping”, and, I must say, that’s a fairly accurate representation of how this album makes me feel as well. I enjoy it, personally. Put on some nice headphones, play this album, close your eyes, and you’re in another world.

    I didn’t notice any serious problems or errors with your post. Again, it was very well done. I see one or two punctuation issues, but other than that, I feel like this is a great post. Thanks so much for taking the time to write a good entry and provide us with plenty of interesting sources to follow. Take care.

    Zachary Dendinger