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Lou Reed: Most Powerful Anti-Drug Song Ever

Sat Mar 10, 2012 1:01 pm

"Heroin" by Lou Reed. This is the most complex, disturbing, and ultimately, powerful anti-drug message ever put into musical form.

Anybody else dig this song? I remembered being overwhelmed by its power when I first heard it. What do you think of a song that doesn't preach? I mean, it's not the "Junkie's Prayer" (Cash). It just doesn't preach, but the message is more powerful that way, I think. He takes you into the horror, so you won't want to go there in reality. Cool.

P.S. -- The lyric on the thumbnail is not my fault because I AM NOT THE UPLOADER. So, I didn't do that for "effect." Just so you know. Weird, though.

Re: Lou Reed: Most Powerful Anti-Drug Song Ever

Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:01 am

I agree that it's one of the great tracks ever made. When the drums speed up, Reed starts repeating himself "and I guess but I just don't know" and John Cale starts screeching his viola it's enough to scare you straight. Unlike the best drug influenced music, it's not exotic. Unlike the worst, it's not off puttingly weird; it's simply terrifying.

It's one of the relatively few songs from the celebrated debut album that doesn't sound terribly dated today. I much prefer the post-Cale self-titled album which has some of the finest singing read ever did (it's not much of a compliment I know, but he's genuinely moving on most of the album) and it also has some of his and Sterling Morrison's finest guitar work.