White Light/White Heat is the second studio album by American rock band the Velvet Underground, released in 1968 on Verve Records. It was the band’s last studio recording of new material with bassist and founding member John Cale. The album was recorded in just two days, and with a noticeably different style from that of The Velvet Underground & Nico. Decades after its release, John Cale described White Light/White Heat as “a very rabid record… The first one had some gentility, some beauty. The second one was consciously anti-beauty.” Sterling Morrison said: “We were all pulling in the same direction. We may have been dragging each other off a cliff, but we were all definitely going in the same direction.” Here are all of the White Light/White Heat songs ranked.
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6. The Gift
“The Gift”, which was written by Lou Reed as some kind of project during his college years. This song could be a “choose what you want to hear track”, since the lyrics can be heard on one speaker, while the music can be heard on the other. So if you feel like just hearing a nice story about a boy being stabbed to death through a cardboard box, just plug out the right speaker.”
5. I Heard Her Call My Name
“I don’t know what to say about “I Heard Her Call My Name” really. It’s such a mindblowing piece by Reed, with the rest of the band is playing a simple beat in the background. It features two of the most memorable guitar solos in experimental rock history, and it is believed to have directly inspired the punk-rock sound, as well as metal(recorded in 1967 for crying out loud!), Reed your a genius.”
See more: The Velvet Underground Albums Ranked
4. Here She Comes Now
“Here She Comes Now: this is the perfect place on the album to put this. See, I may be a little jaded, but I still have a soul. And this pretty little off key tune about trying to make a woman come is just what the soul nurse ordered.”
3. Lady Godiva’s Operation
“Great stuff. I love how noisy and freewheelin these dudes were. I don’t know much about Lady Godiva, but I’m sure she was some transvestite perv like they say in the song. I use to hate the part where Reed starts talking out of nowhere (“neatly pump aaiiiiiir” etc.). Now I think it’s brilliant. I also use to hate the last 30 seconds of this song, but now I like it.”
See more: The Velvet Underground Songs Ranked
2. White Light/White Heat
“White Light/ White Heat is soulful rock n roll for the disillusioned chicken soup maker. It’s soul with attitude. It’s raw, noisy, experimental rock music about the wonderful high you get from meth-amphetamine (Maybe meth it’s not so wonderful, I have too strong a self preservation instinct to try the stuff myself). If they played music like this at clubs, I’d be a pro dancer instead of a recluse with a beef in my heart.”
1. Sister Ray
“This song belongs in the Smithsonian. It should be a right of passage into manhood to listen to this song. The thing about this song is, you have no choice BUT to let it excite you! You can try to resist it, but what good does that do? You can turn it off, but then you’re just some cranky square. “