Lou Reed died on 27 October, 2013. Einstürzende Neubauten's Alexander Hacke on Reed's ultimate misanthropy, and the hidden Evil in his noise.
Lou Reed has died and he may rest in peace.
He used to project the image of being the ultimate misanthrope, but I wonder if that really was the way he felt or if he was just really good at it.
He had never actually been to Berlin when he released an album by that name in 1973, because he thought that if he had called it Brooklyn nobody would have cared.
When I first discovered Metal Machine Music (1975), the thing that most intrigued me about it was his statement in the sleevenotes that no one, including himself, had ever listened to the recording in its entirety.
That probably wasn’t true either.
I did listen to that whole record through, many, many times and I remember wondering what the big deal was, like the disappointment of not being shocked by a highly anticipated horror movie.
The fact that he somehow made us all listen to this hour of feedback over and over, literally crawling into the speakers, trying to catch a glimpse of the hidden Evil, the outspoken cruelty of such a venture and the redeeming quality of living through it, while Lou obviously didn’t care about us or this release, proves in retrospect what a tremendous impact the man had on me.
I must say that I was never consciously a fan of his music, though of course there’s some really great songwriting and nostalgic memories that go with it; but significant to me was his stance and his total disregard of whether his art was appreciated or not – that was inspiring, and again I can only sincerely hope that in his personal life he found the Love and Peace among his fellow human beings he obviously so vehemently refused to share in his art.