I have been listening to Lou Reed a lot this week and looking back to my previous Track of the week’s I’m dumbfounded that he hasn’t made an appearance on any of them until now.
Transformer for me is a perfect album; it manages to exemplify what Lou Reed was best at, telling tales about the fringes of society but with a fragility that could only originate from his unique perspective. Every track could and probably will make my Track of the Week segment in the future but for now I have to pick one and so I thought I would start with the track that initially got me into his music.
Walk on the wild side manages to introduce us to a world of characters that are side-lined by the most of society. Brief tales of transvestites, prostitutes, drug dealers/takers and celebrities who congregate together around Lous life are delivered in a light and joyous way that’s backed up by the instrumentation. This fairytale like counterpoint to some darker and more serious issues allows the track to work on several layers.
It can be enjoyed as both a light pop song and a historical document of late 60s/early 70s New York. It makes the track timeless, exemplifying a time and a place you can travel to every time you hit play: