Lou Reed: Playlist: The Very Best of Lou Reed

Once again it’s time to trot out a series of “best of” material by various artists on a particular label’s roster. RCA is up next and have created their “Playlist” series to get with the modern times and play to the mp3 player crowds who no longer want to sit around and listen to full albums. That’s fine and all, but Lou Reed has never been someone you can cover in 13 skimpy tracks, most of which are drawn from his early-to-mid ’70s heyday. This is almost a carbon copy of the original RCA Reed compilation Walk on the Wild Side released when Lou skipped over to Arista back in 1976. What’s here is good stuff (almost half of Transformer is thrown in), and somehow RCA managed to finagle the rights to “Street Hassle.” But there’s nothing here from The Blue Mask, Legendary Hearts, or Mistrial. And why the hell they still insisted on putting the crummy 2:54 version of “Sally Can’t Dance” on here when there was more than enough room for the full album cut is odd. This collection is okay for a casual fan who just wants to hear “Walk on the Wild Side” and not much else, but those seriously interested in Lou would do best to just explore his individual albums. (RCA/Legacy)

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