Lou Reed was a distinctive rock and roll artist who as he grew older sought to, as he said, “make rock and roll for grownups.” This intense record grew out of his grief at the loss of two of closest friends to cancer. It’s probably not a record for everyone—both because of the rawness of its content and the “it’s an acquired taste” nature of Reed’s singing. But for me, it’s one of the most challenging and life-affirming albums I know of. “What’s Good,” “Power and Glory,” and “Gas and Stoked” are standouts. But the finale, “Magic and Loss” captures Reed’s agenda the best.
Sire Records, 1992. [All Music Guide review]