Lou Reed's twentieth and final solo album Hudson River Wind Meditations is coming to vinyl through Light In The Attic. Releasing January 12, 2024, Reed's decades-long fascination with drone and ambient music reached a fitting conclusion with this 65-minute, 4-song track collection that Reed noted is "music to play in the background of life, to replace the everyday cacophony with new and ordered sounds of an unpredictable nature."
"I guess by 'life,' he meant something like what Brian Eno might mean — ambient music that colors the air in very interesting ways," wrote Reed's widow, musician and artist Laurie Anderson, in a statement. "For me, it resets my brainwaves. In Tibetan Buddhism teachings, heart and mind are the same word — citta — close to the chi of Tai Chi, which is pure energy. This music is pure energy; it breathes in and out. It's not like here's the beginning: dum da da! And now it develops, and now it ends! Rather, it’s one long loop that keeps changing in subtle ways."
Reed's love of drone music, combined with his passion for Tai Chi, yoga and meditation, was his impetus to record the album, which could equally be considered an outlier in his catalog as well as a 180-degree balancing act to his infamous 1975 feedback and noise-driven Metal Machine Music. While that album spelled disaster for his reputation (and was withdrawn three weeks after its release), in hindsight Reed made a conscious, divisive decision to confound and confuse. In Hudson River Wind Meditations, the listener is now intentionally brought into Reed's brain.
"Listening to Hudson River Wind Meditations as a whole piece is moving through several modes and states of a sixty-five-minute meditation," Anderson also added. Anderson, who was married to Reed from 2008 until his death in 2013, has been a driving force in curating the music that has been stored away from the public limelight. With the upcoming unveiling of these recordings, new light can be shed on where Reed had placed his priorities in the last years of his life.
The reissued and remastered Hudson River Wind Meditations can be pre-ordered here and here, and is available in several variants, including boxed Deluxe Editions. Produced in partnership with Light in the Attic, Laurie Anderson and the Lou Reed Archive, remastered by Grammy-nominated engineer John Baldwin and an accompanying booklet featuring unseen photography by Reed, Q&A with Anderson & Jonathan Cott, essay by Eddie Stern, and archival interviews with Reed and the late Hal Willner.
Tracklist: 01 Move Your Heart 02 Find Your Note 03 Hudson River Wind (Blend The Ambience) 04 Wind Coda