How Far Can We Get From the Velvet Underground?

Categories: Digitalia

Better VU Nico July 9.jpg
Since Rocks Off bought a smartphone this past January, we have downloaded almost 400 songs from iTunes. We know, we need help. But we have become fascinated with the damn thing.

One of the features we like the best is "Listeners Also Bought" at the bottom of each album's page, which we assume ranks the Top 5 other recordings people who bought that album also purchased. It's a good way to gauge how popular and influential an album has been, and where it ranks within the artist's catalogue.

Under someone's most popular records, for example, the LAB list is usually similar artists whose work was popular at the time, while albums a little further down the artist's totem pole tend to get bought within the same catalogue. Also, every last man, woman and child with a smartphone apparently owns a copy of Led Zeppelin's Houses of the Holy.

We spend way too much time on this shit, but hey, at least it keeps us off drugs. To illustrate our point, Rocks Off chose an album more or less at random and see how far we could take it. Personally, we never even liked the Velvet Underground's & Nico all that much, but it seemed like a good album to start: It's fairly iconic, and it straddles a lot of different genres - classic rock, alternative/punk, art-rock/noise and everything that got twisted up in between.

Also, Nico is our cat's name (but Neko, like Case). Let's see what happened.

Velvet Underground, Velvet Underground & Nico

Listeners Also Bought:

Pixies, Surfer Rosa
Pixies, Doolittle
Television, Marquee Moon
Neutral Milk Hotel, In the Airplane Over the Sea
Tom Waits, Rain Dogs

Rocks Off Chose: Tough call, especially over Doolittle, but we went with Rain Dogs because Keith Richards guests on "Big Black Mariah" and we have always loved "Gun Street Girl." In fact, we downloaded it while we were writing this blog. Told you we had a problem.


Rain Dogs July 9.JPG
Listeners Also Bought:

The Stooges, The Stooges (Deluxe Edition)

Rocks Off Chose: That's it. The only other choices were The Velvet Underground and Nico and Marquee Moon. So we'll go with Iggy & friends.


The Stooges July 9.jpg
Listeners Also Bought:

New York Dolls, New York Dolls
The Velvet Underground, White Light/White Heat
Television, Marquee Moon
Gang of Four, Entertainment!
Black Flag, Damaged

Rocks Off Chose: Marquee Moon. Someone is obviously trying to tell us something.



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