My Week Beats Your Year: Encounters With Lou Reed
★★★★ Pat Thomas & Michael Heath HAT & BEARD. £31
Hardback anthology of interviews from Creem, MOJO and more.
Eek! Ouch! Eww! With such lively topics as coprophagia, “drug masturbation”, and (more often than not) journalistic imbecility, The Lou Reed Interview was rarely boring, although, as this well-researched and artfully selected best-of makes clear, some were more accommodating than others. In the campier ones – there’s a doozy with the Melody Maker’s Allan Jones from 1977 – the sense of an actor playing a role is acute (Lou: “They even expected me to OD with my own dope”). Elsewhere, as when he flat out refuses to believe that MOJO’s Sylvie Simmons could have read Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake, on account of being a journalist, and – perhaps – a woman, he’s nasty in a less entertaining way. More than once, you find yourself wondering why Reed did this to himself as much as to the writers he was appearing to bait. Maybe, and here’s a horrible thought, he actually enjoyed it.