The Velvet Underground: Bootleg Series Volume 1: The Quine Tapes (2001)
As will be crucial to both admirers and scholars of the band, The Quine Tapes has two complete and one medley version of "Sister Ray," the latter fused with "Foggy Notion" and taken from a St. Louis source tape from '69 that rounds out the two principle venue recordings of the set. The first, from November of '69 at the Family Dog in Los Angeles, occupies the opening disc, and labors somewhat. The predominantly hippie-type crowd seems at best vaguely aware of the band's presence, and the Velvets' songs are stripped of their typical verve, sounding instead more apathetic than earnest, save perhaps in presenting an affront to tolerance; droning, laconic, in no hurry to get anywhere, let alone end their songs, the Velvets seem to be indulging themselves. As an extension of the group's peculiar ideology, the album is sequenced so that "I'm Sticking With You" and "Sunday Morning" are performed in succession and even received warmly by the Family Dog audience; a coursing, twenty-four minute rendition of "Sister Ray" follows. One supposes that antipathy has its place.
Omitting the final medley, the second and third discs come from late November/early December '69 at the Matrix in San Francisco and display the Velvets as acutely animalistic, a group in a wretched mood with a sound that would like to rip your throat open. For ten minutes, "White Light/White Heat," with its rhythm guitar pulse, virtually fibrillates, and "Venus in Furs," even without John Cale's viola, possesses a ravaging, eviscerating quality, Leopold Von Sacher-Masoch with seventy-five decibels at his disposal. The Matrix version of "Sister Ray" lasts nearly two-thirds of an hour and was, by then, to the Velvets what "My Favorite Things" had been to John Coltrane, a freeform soundscape presenting songs within a song and ideas within ideas. A vital live album then, and a fretful portion of an afternoon.
Track Listing: Disc 1: I'm Waiting for the Man 2. It's Just Too Much 3. What Goes On 4. I Can't Stand It 5. Some Kinda Love 6. Foggy Notion 7. Femme Fatale 8. After Hours 9. I'm Sticking With You 10. Sunday Morning 11. Sister Ray Disc 2: 1. Follow the Leader 2. White Light/White Heat 3. Venus in Furs 4. Heroin 5. Sister Ray Disc 3: 1. Rock & Roll 2. New Age 3. Over You 4. Black Angel's Death Song 5. I'm Waiting for the Man 6. Ride into the Sun 7. Sister Ray/Foggy Notion
Personnel: Lou Reed (rhythm and lead guitar, lead vocals), Sterling Morrison (lead and rhythm guitar, vocals), Doug Yule (bass, organ, vocals), Maureen Tucker (drums, vocals)
Record Label: Universal Music Group
Style: Beyond Jazz