The Feelies: Some Kinda Love: Performing the Music of the Velvet … – Pitchfork

The Feelies may not be the Velvet Underground’s first disciples—Jonathan Richman was there at the inception, tailing the band with the fervor of a Deadhead. But it could be argued that the New Jersey institution, led by Glenn Mercer and Bill Million, is responsible for much of the indie rock that flowed downstream from the Velvets. Crazy Rhythms, the Feelies’ 1980 debut, bristled with a confined nervous energy as the band brought the downtown innovations of the Velvet Underground to the suburbs, an aesthetic that became part of the lingua franca of guitar-pop for the ensuing decades.

The Feelies’ new album, Some Kinda Love: Performing the Music of the Velvet Underground, captures a performance held in conjunction with the touring exhibition “The Velvet Underground Experience” during its New York City run in 2018. Setting up shop at the White Eagle Hall in Jersey City, the Feelies invited fellow Velvets fanatics Richard Barone and James Maestro of the Bongos to hop on stage, then proceeded to tear through a set that sidelined the avant garde escapades of the Velvet Underground to focus squarely on their strengths as a rock’n’roll band.

Rightly celebrated as a key act in the birth of transgressive rock, the Velvet Underground also had a sweet undercurrent flowing through their occasionally abrasive music. Some of this can be chalked up to Lou Reed’s enduring love of doo-wop and R&B, an affection that grounded the group even as they floated far afield on waves of noise and ambience. As a band, the Feelies don’t quite share the same R&B affinity, yet they hone in on that warmth, deliberately sidestepping the ominous dread of “Heroin,” the cacophony of “Sister Ray,” and the poignant sadness of “Pale Blue Eyes” so they can play songs that collectively sound like a celebration.

The Feelies favor no particular era of the Velvet Underground on Some Kinda Love, balancing selections from the group’s early years with John Cale with songs originally sung by Doug Yule, Cale’s replacement in the Velvets. It’s a holistic view of the band that places an emphasis on songs that sound great within the confines of a club. The most telling selection may be “Head Held High,” a rocker that opens the second side of Loaded—the last album Reed made with the group—and the moment where Some Kinda Love kicks into high gear: It’s a song with no higher meaning than being a real good time, which is precisely what the Feelies intend to deliver.

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Marc Valldeperez

Soy el administrador de marcahora.xyz y también un redactor deportivo. Apasionado por el deporte y su historia. Fanático de todas las disciplinas, especialmente el fútbol, el boxeo y las MMA. Encargado de escribir previas de muchos deportes, como boxeo, fútbol, NBA, deportes de motor y otros.

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