Tuesday

Velvet Underground

Bootleg Series Volume 1: The Quine Tapes
Recorded at the peak of Lou Reed's songwriting powers and the band's apex as a well oiled touring machine, The Quine Tapes are undeniably the best official record of the Velvet Underground in all its ear bending splendor. There are live documents of higher sound quality, namely the double LP set 1969: The Velvet Underground Live, but for what The Quine Tapes lack in quality (and in reality, they're not all that bad) they more than make up for in capturing the spirit of a group that was light years beyond its time. Famed for his guitar work throughout the mid 70s/80s, Robert Quine befriended the Velvets somewhere in the midst of the 1969 tour and with the band's permission, began recording all of the shows he'd attend on a personal tape recorder. The best of the best were transferred to reel-to-reel tapes and those that survived comprise this officially released collection. Mirroring the band's set on the 69 tour, each disc climaxes with a monster-sized version of Sister Ray (24, 38 and 28 minutes respectively), while the amount of material pulled from each of the band's four albums is represented in almost equal measure - including plenty of Loaded material roughly a year before it was released, and a bevy of tunes that would never appear on the band's LPs. The consistent quality across these discs proves that even on shows that were recorded up to six months apart as they are here, the Velvet Underground was a live band without equal. Words like transcendent, frothy, superbly melodic, orgasmic, et al come to mind, but they're really of no use in describing what we have here. Just click, wait and reward yourself with a good listen. It hardly gets better than this.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Right after The Quine Tapes were issued, I read an interview with someone associated with the Matrix, where much of the Quine tapes where recorded; who claims he recorded high quality reel to reel tapes of the same shows. He seemed irritated that he had been unsuccessful in obtaining legal rights to release them and that the Quine tapes were now circulating. Whether this is true or not; it definitely whetts the appetite.

Thanks fo the blog... great selection of stuff; and though I have to admit it tends mirrore much of what I already have collected over the years I have returned for the writing.

Ben said...

Wow - can't wait to listen to this. Thanks much. Keep up the great work!

Orpheus said...

Thanks for this one.

Willard said...

Hey JR,

Many thanks for this one. Insightful, as always.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for another slice of classic 20th century music you gotta have!
Unfortunately witht this mIrror downloading I can only download the first disc.Any suggestions? I'm a MAcuser which might explain it..
Anyway keep up the excellent work, I love the eclectic sweep of your taste.
Goma Soma III
ps Any rare Terry Reid,Kevin Ayres, Alice Coltrane, Trees?

JR HeatWarp said...

Hey Anon- I'd never heard that story about the "alternate" Matrix recordings! I wonder if they've made it to bootleg. I'm very curious indeed!

Thanks for dropping by headquarters, Willard! I hope you're enjoying this set.

Hello Anon- The trouble is probably not with your MAC or the mirroring sites. I've slyly broken up the download into three parts, each corresponding to the 3 words in The (part 1) Quine (part 2) Tapes (part 3). Give that a try! Dang, now my secret's out!

Sadly, my Reid, Ayers, A. Coltrane and Trees collection doesn't extend past the more well knowns. If ever I come across some rare material, I'll certainly post it! Thanks again for dropping in.

ge said...

yow these are good to have...used to see quine's gentle beshaded visage round these streets a lot, alas....but reed only encountered once recently on St Marks, near where Sally used to live

Anonymous said...

Transcendental! Many thanks!!

Anonymous said...

Wow this looks very interesting, what happened to the link?