Loaded is the fourth studio album by American rock band The Velvet Underground, released in November 1970 by Atlantic Records’ subsidiary label Cotillion.
The end of the road for the Velvet Underground – but a set that’s also one of the group’s best-remembered albums too! The record marked a big shift for the group – a move to Atco from Verve, continuing to work without John Cale – and the sound is possibly more rockish and straight ahead than some of their previous efforts (certainly compared to White Light/White Heat) – but always with that dark edge that Lou Reed could bring to the music! In a way, the whole thing’s almost a recasting of all the advances made in 60s rock, but seen through a lens that shows the darker corners and shadows that have crept up alongside – that kind of subtle, yet extremely powerful quality that Reed would bring to his long run of solo albums in the 70s – but served up here with more of an edge, in the definite VU fashion. Titles include the seminal classics – “Sweet Jane” and “Rock & Roll”, plus “Cool It Down”, “New Age”, “Head Held High”, “Lonesome Cowboy Bill”, “Oh Sweet Nuthin”, and “I Found A Reason”.
(Rhino Records – RCD1 9034, Atlantic – 603497838257, Cotillion – RCD1 9034)