Of all the terms I read when scanning the mixed user reviews for Loaded, ‘lukewarm’ struck me the most. This was the Velvet Underground record that intended to leave the warehouse and make love to the radio (almost literally on Rock & Roll). The blueprint foretold breezy, warm, and painless tracks, where the droning sonic entanglements of their debut with Nico would train themselves using organic instrumental cooperation. At its most ‘lukewarm,’ Loaded is still charming and weird. It never had the relationship with the radio that the record executives desired, but it remains one of the most sophisticated examples of how to pepper pop with irony.
A favourite: ‘Rock & Roll’