After the commercial suicide of "metal machine music" Lou found himself in hard times financially and following some assistance from Clive Davis at RCA opted to make a more conventional rock album. First off "Coney Island Baby" is one Lou's best sounding records , the guitars and drums sound warm and everything has a clear space of its own in the mix . Lou himself's vocals are absolutely brilliant making the opening two tracks cool if slightly cheesy pop sound fantastic . He is aided partly by the lovely slide guitars and chimes on the opener . The version of "shes my best friend" is more rousing than the VU version and a perfect update . The first side perfectly closes with "kicks" one of Lou's many 70s epics of sexual violence and debauchery . The use of interjected vocal samples was pretty original for the time and pretty unsettling too.
Side 2 is not quite pack the same punch but "a gift" is pretty camp and hilarious ,while the title track is an absolute beauty . A regretful look back at youthful failure with lovely sweet jane type chugging guitars throughout . Once again that most original of voices sings its ass off. Im getting the feeling there is more to Lou Reed solo 70s work than "Transformer" and "Berlin"