November 12, 2013

Lou's Zoo Reviews – 1979's THE BELLS

This series will focus on Lou's solo career only, a historic overview, from 1972's Lou Reed to 2000's Ecstasy. What follows is hardly definitive, short-handed at best, and purely my opinions. 


This is a hard album to take seriously. It is full of pompous missteps and grandiose failures, but it is quintessential Lou. For me, this album marks a turn in Lou's career as an artist.

From The Bells forward, his albums will suffer from a slew of such head-scratchingly bad songs (anchored between works of genius) that you have to wonder if he was doing it on purpose. Lou had puffed himself pretty far by this point, thinking he could do no wrong. But he was wrong, and many of the songs on this album were wrong too.

For some reason the critics loved The Bells. I often forget that it even exists. Lou perplexes. The Bells does too.
Best Songs: 

All Through The Night – So you're hanging out at a bar talking with Lou, listening to Lou on the jukebox. This song throws you on many levels. It's a sad song. Longing, depressed, Lou hollows out his voice for this one. There's that horn beat going through it, grounding it while it expands. Where are we when we hear this song? Deep into our own dreams, perhaps.

Stupid Man – This piano driven ditty is all over the place. Who is the Stupid Man? Well, it may be me for listening to this song. I have no idea what Lou wants you to think about this song. I have no idea what I want you to think about this song. A matter of fact, I have no idea what I even think about this song. Does that make me a stupid man or is this just a stupid song?

Disco Mystic –  This is a song that obviously comments on the pervasive attitude of rock in the late 70's and Lou here is... no... I can't... Seriously... Disco Mystic

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