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At the time of its 1973 release, Berlin was met with quizzical stares. After the success of Transformer and the hit "Walk on the Wild Side," Lou Reed had positioned himself as a leader of the glam rock movement. However, the former Velvet Underground leader always found greater comfort on society's margins, and his college days studying with Delmore Schwartz had instilled in him a sense of literary purpose. So doing Transformer II was out of the question. Instead, Reed released an album that's as introspective and painful as any album could be. Great beauty rests alongside the ache of "The Kids," inside the Bob Ezrin–produced orchestration of "Sad Song," and in the lyrical directness of "Caroline Says II." Berlin features an all-star cast of musicians, from Jack Bruce to Steve Winwood to Tony Levin. Its reputation has grown to the point of legend; it received a historic live performance at St. Ann's Warehouse in Brooklyn in 2006.

Customer Reviews


This is the "Must Have" Lou Reed album. A great starting point for those who are not Lou Reed fans, you will be after listening to this. All tracks are great, but my stand out is Sad Song.


Born: 02 March 1942 in Brooklyn, NY

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The career of Lou Reed defied capsule summarization. Like David Bowie (whom Reed directly inspired in many ways), he made over his image many times, mutating from theatrical glam rocker to strung-out junkie to avant-garde noiseman to straight rock & roller to your average guy. Few would deny Reed's immense importance and considerable achievements. As has often been written, he expanded the vocabulary of rock & roll lyrics into the previously forbidden territory of kinky sex, drug use (and abuse),...
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