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As the classically trained member of the Velvet Underground, few would have been surprised had John Cale gone the avant-garde route. And he did just that on 1971’s Church of Anthrax (a collaboration with Terry Riley) and 1972’s The Academy in Peril.But on his 1970 debut Vintage Violence, Cale produced a collection of more or less conventional rock songs that had virtually nothing in common with Cale’s contributions to such VU songs as “The Gift” and “Lady Godiva’s Operation.”
What was even more surprising were Cale’s influences. Country rock is the last thing you would associate with Cale, but one can hear its echoes on no less than six of Vintage Violence’s ten songs, most often in the guitar playing of Garland Jeffreys–a rock and reggae guy no one would have associated with the country rock either. One can only wonder how to account for this. Did someone dump Hee Haw into the studio water supply? Mix Gram Parsons into his Welsh rarebit?
But the John Cale of Vintage Violence is still John Cale, the off-kilter singer-songwriter capable of veering from lovely ballads to flights of whimsy (“Ski Patrol” from 1975’s Slow Dazzle is a hilarious must-hear). Cale’s lyrics make obvious he’s every bit as conversant with the poetry of the French surrealists as he is the traditional love song, and the only thing missing on Vintage Violence is the cocaine-induced paranoia that would crop up later on songs like “Fear Is a Man’s Best Friend” and “Gun”–which is odd given that “violence” in the LP’s title.
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*SEALED* Jacket still sealed in shrink original wrap; disc sold ungraded or "as is."
NM (Near Mint) Appears unplayed and will bear no marks, sleeve scuffs, or scratches.
EX+ (Excellent) May have one or two visible imperfections (i.e. sleeve scuffs, faint scratches, or other superficial marks) that will not affect playback.
VG+ (Very Good+) A few visible imperfections. These may include sleeve scuffs, light scratches, or other superficial marks.
VG (Very Good) Similar imperfections found on VG+ records but in slightly greater numbers. Records graded VG and above will typically not have any scratches that are deep enough to be felt with a fingernail.
VG- (Very Good-) A number of visible imperfections; the presence of a considerable number of light scratches will force a VG- grade, as will the presence of significant isolated defects such as scratches deep enough to be felt with a fingernail.
G (Good) Record can be played without skipping, but will have significant surface noise, scratches, and visible groove wear. G+ and G- are used to indicate stronger and weaker copies within this range.
*SW/DNAP* Slight warp, does not affect playback
*QUAD* Quadraphonic Sound, similar to today’s surround sound
All records are visually graded by our experienced staff, using a bright lamp and an Audio-Technica ATLP-120 turntable.