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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A celebration & conclusion to the most influential band ever
'Live MCMCXIII'is an excellent live album that captures the original line-up of The Velvets reformed after all the years...What people seemed to hate about this reformation, is that the songs are sometimes quite different to the recorded versions (now almost Commandments). What they're missing, is that the Velvets have been covered to death- mostly badly- and these are...
Published on 9 Sept. 2001 by Jason Parkes

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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Lou Reed past his sell-by date
Three words sum up what is wrong with this album: Lou Reed's vocals. The playing is generally good to excellent, the songs that featured John Cale on vocals sound pretty good, but if you love these songs (and most of them are great) Lou Reed's godawful singsong prattling is likely to drive you round the bend. Seems this was how he did it throughout the tour -...
Published on 13 Mar. 2006 by freewheeling frankie


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A celebration & conclusion to the most influential band ever, 9 Sept. 2001
By 
Jason Parkes "We're all Frankies'" (Worcester, UK) - See all my reviews
(No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Mcmxciii (Audio CD)
'Live MCMCXIII'is an excellent live album that captures the original line-up of The Velvets reformed after all the years...What people seemed to hate about this reformation, is that the songs are sometimes quite different to the recorded versions (now almost Commandments). What they're missing, is that the Velvets have been covered to death- mostly badly- and these are their songs. They can do what they like with them.
There's some chuff here: Lou's re-phrasing of 'Venus In Furs' is irritating; 'Velvet Nursery Rhyme' is a piece of crap & 'Hey Mr Rain' is quite dull ('European Son' or 'Sister Ray' would have been better!). Mo Tucker provides some great lead vocals on the brilliant 'Afterhours' & 'I'm Sticking with You'. Cale sings 'All Tomorrow's Parties' & 'Femme Fatale'- the latter suits his rich vocals (though obviously, Nico is missed). Lou's take on 'I'll Be Your Mirror' is o.k...Disc One also offers perfunctory versions of 'Gonna Have a Good Time Together', 'Guess I'm Falling in Love' & 'I Heard Her Call My Name'. 'Some kinda Love' is quite close to the original (recorded without Cale). The best songs on this disc are 'Beginning to See the Light', which I prefer to the original (Reed's voice & phrasing are superb) & 'The Gift'- which is given a wonderful performance by Cale...Disc Two gives us the extended 'Sweet Jane', which is superb & a Cale-vocalled 'White Light/White Heat' (which seems correct as WLWH is very much his album). The takes on 'Heroin' & 'Black Angels Death Song' are as good as they could possibly be (& if people think these versions are bad- check out some of Lou's solo live LP's!!!). The triad of 'Rock'n'Roll', 'I Can't Stand it' & 'I'm Waiting For the Man' are great- the last with a Cale lead vocal- making the song afresh. 'Pale Blue Eyes' is probably one of the Velvets best & is given a perfect rendition here. The final (& new) song is 'Coyote'- which is ok, but not as good as anything on 'Songs For Drella'...This is a great final chapter for the band- who would fall out & then come together temporarily to say goodbye to the late, great Sterling Morrison. They were the greatest band in the world (though few knew). Listen to this, they are the greatest band in the world (you know). OK, we're missing 'Run Run Run', 'Here She Comes Now', 'I'm Set Free', 'Ocean' & 'Oh Sweet Nuthin', but the Velvets back-catalogue is rich enough to get over this...Worth purchase for 'Beginning to See the Light' & 'Pale Blue Eyes'; yes, they are THAT good.
Linger on...
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Big happy family reunion, 2 July 2000
By 
Steve Craftman (Neath) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Mcmxciii (Audio CD)
I can't believe no-one else has reviewed this record! After a break of 25 years, finally the original Velvets make it to Europe and create a live album that's a "told you so" to everyone who ever ignored them. Although this is one fine album, there's an edge missing - perhaps the result of playing to audiences who know and love everything they've ever done?
Shortly after this album was recorded, Reed and Cale fell out again, apparently this time "for good" and not long after that, Morrison died, two events which underline the "one last time" feeling of the record. It's a giant reunion party with the Velvets as guests of honour.
No live album is without its mistakes. Here there are four: Reed murders the vocal of I'll be Your Mirror, the inclusion of Hey Mr Rain (you can't tell me they didn't know we wanted Sister Ray!), the twee introductions patter-song Velvet Nursery Rhyme, and the non-inclusion of What Goes On (though to be fair, that was only played once on the entire tour).
Everything else about the record is a plus: from the joyous opening of Real Good Time to the plaintive Coyote. The standout track is Pale Blue Eyes, on which Cale's viola could make anyone weep with joy.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A celebration & conclusion to the most influential band ever, 9 Sept. 2001
By 
Jason Parkes "We're all Frankies'" (Worcester, UK) - See all my reviews
(No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Mcmxciii (Audio CD)
'Live MCMCXIII'is an excellent live album that captures the original line-up of The Velvets reformed after all the years...What people seemed to hate about this reformation, is that the songs are sometimes quite different to the recorded versions (now almost Commandments). What they're missing, is that the Velvets have been covered to death- mostly badly- and these are their songs. They can do what they like with them.
There's some chuff here: Lou's re-phrasing of 'Venus In Furs' is irritating; 'Velvet Nursery Rhyme' is a piece of crap & 'Hey Mr Rain' is quite dull ('European Son' or 'Sister Ray' would have been better!). Mo Tucker provides some great lead vocals on the brilliant 'Afterhours' & 'I'm Sticking with You'. Cale sings 'All Tomorrow's Parties' & 'Femme Fatale'- the latter suits his rich vocals (though obviously, Nico is missed). Lou's take on 'I'll Be Your Mirror' is o.k...Disc One also offers perfunctory versions of 'Gonna Have a Good Time Together', 'Guess I'm Falling in Love' & 'I Heard Her Call My Name'. 'Some kinda Love' is quite close to the original (recorded without Cale). The best songs on this disc are 'Beginning to See the Light', which I prefer to the original (Reed's voice & phrasing are superb) & 'The Gift'- which is given a wonderful performance by Cale...Disc Two gives us the extended 'Sweet Jane', which is superb & a Cale-vocalled 'White Light/White Heat' (which seems correct as WLWH is very much his album). The takes on 'Heroin' & 'Black Angels Death Song' are as good as they could possibly be (& if people think these versions are bad- check out some of Lou's solo live LP's!!!). The triad of 'Rock'n'Roll', 'I Can't Stand it' & 'I'm Waiting For the Man' are great- the last with a Cale lead vocal- making the song afresh. 'Pale Blue Eyes' is probably one of the Velvets best & is given a perfect rendition here. The final (& new) song is 'Coyote'- which is ok, but not as good as anything on 'Songs For Drella'...This is a great final chapter for the band- who would fall out & then come together temporarily to say goodbye to the late, great Sterling Morrison. They were the greatest band in the world (though few knew). Listen to this, they are the greatest band in the world (you know). OK, we're missing 'Run Run Run', 'Here She Comes Now', 'I'm Set Free', 'Ocean' & 'Oh Sweet Nuthin', but the Velvets back-catalogue is rich enough to get over this...Worth purchase for 'Beginning to See the Light' & 'Pale Blue Eyes'; yes, they are THAT good.
Linger on...
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Lou Reed past his sell-by date, 13 Mar. 2006
By 
freewheeling frankie (north London, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Mcmxciii (Audio CD)
Three words sum up what is wrong with this album: Lou Reed's vocals. The playing is generally good to excellent, the songs that featured John Cale on vocals sound pretty good, but if you love these songs (and most of them are great) Lou Reed's godawful singsong prattling is likely to drive you round the bend. Seems this was how he did it throughout the tour - there's no obvious difference between this recording from Paris and the performance I saw in London. It almost seems like he's deliberately sabotaging the whole shebang just to spite the rest of them, though I don't think that's actually the case - I think he genuinely believed he was "creatively interpreting" the songs and shouldn't just sing them as he used to. Well I've heard creatively interpreting and this ain't it. More probably he knew he just couldn't sing like that anymore. There are high points, notably the absolutely brilliant version of All Tomorrow's Parties (with Cale on vocals and extraordinary piano), but nothing else comes anywhere near the inspiration of the original records, and the inevitable, and godawful, new song, "Coyote", which they played as an encore, was deeply unnecessary.
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Mcmxciii by Velvet Underground (Audio CD - 1993)
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