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Metal Machine Music Limited Edition
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Vinyl, Original recording remastered, July 19, 2011
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What, then, does this innovative and bizarre recording have to recommend it? Believe it or not, it does hold one's attention surprisingly well as the sound effects from Reed's two guitars bounce off one another, rise and fall, and produce the occasional and accidental rhythm. The sheer grating quality of the "music" is also surprisingly cleansing, and even useful as background noise for concentrating on reading in a distracting situation. (This was pointed out to me by my girlfriend, who likes studying along to the disc.) The finale also is unexpectedly climactic, building up an hour's worth of tension in a rhythmic series of pops until as suddenly as it started, it's over. (This is accidental, as Reed's original idea for the end of the vinyl LP was quite different, as is explained in the CD's fascinating liner notes. But it's a worthy part of the recording all the same)
Undeniably, there is an emperor's-new-clothes aspect to this album, and I admit to being as mystified as anyone as to why Reed risked his career for it. But if you have any interest in the avant-garde of rock and roll or you just like topsy-turvy noise, this is the right album.
The album consists of nothing but endless drones and shreiks of guitar feedback piled on top of each other. AND it goes on for 64-minutes straight. The music doesn't get any quieter or louder as it goes on. It slams you in the face right at the beginning and stays there for its entire duration. Believe it or not, this album can serve as some excellent background music when played at a lower volume. When played at a higher volume, it's an excellent tool for getting that certain person you can't stand to leave the room instantly. It also serves as THE perfect substitute for alcohol and drugs when you're depressed. I know this from experience. I played my original LP of "Metal Machine Music" daily in the months that followed my Mom's passing. Trust me, it works!!
The newly remastered version of this album includes the original artwork and liner notes plus an excellent historical essay which gives the full details on how this album came to be. Even if you don't like the music, it's worth buying for the essay.
"Metal Machine Music" has also gained noteriety for being possibly the first 'industrial music' album. Many artists in the industrial and harder-techno field have cited this album as an influence. Like it or not, "Metal Machine Music" was ahead of its time and despite the effort behind it, has turned into a major work-of-art.
Having said that, I also believe that MMM was recorded for 1 specific reason. Lou was trying to "clear the air" of all the quote, unquote "sally can't dance, your rock 'n'roll animal". Which I think means all the fans of those records and others like them. He was casting those fans aside much the same way that Little Richard threw his jewels in the river or Brian Wilson stopped recording and writing music at the height of his popularity. All probably felt a certain amount of pressure, both from record companies as well as the fans to keep churning out the same product over and over with new and different wrapping.
Many times that gets to be the disillusionment of rock stars. The need to sell "product" as opposed to creating music that means something and has relevance to themselves and their fans. The rock music world rises, falls and changes much too quickly for most stars to retain their shine and fans become impatient for their favorite star to produce the next music masterpiece that resembles and continues the original greatness that they achieved early in their career.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Either you like it or you don't, but holds its own with any industrial noise albums that were released many years later. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Davis
A couple of weeks ago I watched CBGB, the movie about the night club on the Bowery where punk took its first baby steps. Read morePublished 5 months ago by D. K. Malone
Take the 5 star review with a grain of salt, the salt is this isn't really music or musical in any sense except musical instruments were used (guitar and guitar feedback in loops). Read morePublished 5 months ago by M. Salmestrelli
I listened to the whole thing, and it was like going through all 5 stages of grief, but at the same time. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Grey
Reed takes "Sister Ray" to its logical conclusion with this double album of twisting, turning, churning, and interacting guitar feedback.Published 7 months ago by K. Crothers
Assuming that you can appreciate EXTREME drone music (which most people couldn't back in 1975),
this is a rather beautiful and bracing listening experience. Read more
I like listening to MMM when I study and for that it is absolutely perfect. While at first it seems a cacophony of random noise, upon repeated listening the madness slowly becomes... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Amazon Customer