The Velvet Underground

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Release date
21 Jun 2011
Running length
10 tracks
Running time


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    Track     Duration Listeners
1 Candy Says 4:02 236,786
2 What Goes On 4:32 259,405
3 Some Kinda Love 4:00 203,308
4 Pale Blue Eyes 5:39 404,089
5 Jesus 3:24 165,703
6 Beginning To See The Light 4:37 225,263
7 I'm Set Free 4:04 157,175
8 That's The Story Of My Life 2:04 149,003
9 The Murder Mystery 8:55 125,292
10 After Hours 2:07 224,125

About this album

Upon first release, the Velvet Underground’s self-titled third album must have surprised their fans nearly as much as their first two albums shocked the few mainstream music fans who heard them. After testing the limits of how musically and thematically challenging rock could be on Velvet Underground & Nico and White Light/White Heat, this 1969 release sounded spare, quiet, and contemplative, as if the previous albums documented some manic, speed-fueled party and this was the subdued morning after. (The album’s relative calm has often been attributed to the departure of the band’s most committed avant-gardist, John Cale, in the fall of 1968; the arrival of new bassist Doug Yule; and the theft of the band’s amplifiers shortly before they began recording.) But Lou Reed’s lyrical exploration of the demimonde is as keen here as on any album he ever made, while displaying a warmth and compassion he sometimes denied his characters. “Candy Says,” “Pale Blue Eyes,” and “I’m Set Free” may be more muted in approach than what the band had done in the past, but “What Goes On” and “Beginning to See the Light” made it clear the VU still loved rock & roll, and “The Murder Mystery” (which mixes and matches four separate poetic narratives) is as brave and uncompromising as anything on White Light/White Heat. This album sounds less like the Velvet Underground than any of their studio albums, but it’s as personal, honest, and moving as anything Lou Reed ever committed to tape.

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  • Maglor_T

    All this time I thought he was holding a guitar, not a magazine. [2]

    18 Feb 12:15pm Reply
  • Supercoolguy64

    damn, almost forgot how much i love After Hours

    7 Feb 11:52pm Reply
  • MisterJunior

    @Spacer Well, you got your wish. The 45th anniversary "super deluxe" edition of this album is arguably even better than the similarly comprehensive packages for the debut and White Light/White Heat. I love this album. When I first started listening to this band, it was this record that got me into them; the earliest stuff was a little too noisy and/or atonal and/or "weird" for me at the time, but this one was (and is) just a collection of incredible songs. Who would've thought after the cacophony of White Light/White Heat that these guys could be capable of an album of such generally quiet beauty? It's remained a favorite of mine in the many years since.

    30 Dec 2014 Reply
  • OcellatedGod

    One of the best albums ever. Fact. [6]

    11 Oct 2014 Reply
  • silverlage


    23 Sep 2014 Reply
  • musicmisc

    this is a pretty boring album

    26 Jul 2014 Reply
  • butt-plugsuit

    All this time I thought he was holding a guitar, not a magazine.

    27 May 2014 Reply
  • Rezzo64

    A good quality soundset gives this album so much more justice

    1 Mar 2014 Reply
  • rhayader18

    One of the best albums ever. Fact. [5]

    12 Feb 2014 Reply
  • rhayader18

    The Closet Mix is even more awesome.

    12 Feb 2014 Reply
  • Spacer-

    Hoping there will be a Super Deluxe Edition this year in the line of the 2 previous albums! Would be very nice to have such a third nice deluxe book on the rack :-).

    10 Jan 2014 Reply
  • Estranged_Ann

    One of the best albums ever. Fact. [4]

    1 Nov 2013 Reply
  • BanconIsGood


    8 Aug 2013 Reply
  • Lilmedonster

    very enjoyable

    19 Jul 2013 Reply
  • k_naruchiha94

    One of the best albums ever. Fact. [3]

    5 Jun 2013 Reply
  • Punching_joe

    proto twee pop

    28 Mar 2013 Reply
  • megajosh2

    I don't think I've ever heard anything which sounds so close to pop music that was this fucking PERFECT. GOD

    30 Nov 2012 Reply
  • roldki

    Wonderful, but someone screwed up the track listing here.

    21 Oct 2012 Reply
  • bander_az

    One of the best albums ever. Fact. [2]

    28 Jul 2012 Reply
  • ellepharaoh

    Good for a hangover.

    26 Jul 2012 Reply
  • All 139 shouts