The grumpiest guy in rock continues to defend “Lulu,” the album he made with Metallica, despite the love- it-or-hate-it reaction its received to date.
“Who cares?” Reed tells the Telegraph when the mere mention of the critic’s reaction to the project. “I never wrote for them then, I don’t write for them now. I have no interest in what they have to say about anything. I’m interested in whether I like it. I write for me.”
“You know a lot of time these guys that interview us, they think they’re more literate than I am,” rants Reed. “That would be a real bad mistake. Don’t kid yourself about me, you know what I’m saying? I’m not a good guy to f--- with.”
Part of the tough guy mask Lou wears to protect himself from letting others know he actually does care what people have to say about his work shows a crack when he blurts out, “Are you gonna savage this when you leave the room?” out of the blue. “I think we did a sensual thing. Music is magical, it can make you feel good, it can make you feel bad, and then you put some serious words to it, not just 'I got released from rehab this week, yay.’ Let’s say you go a little bit past there. In my conceit, I thought what if Tennessee Williams had got a crack at this? Can’t it be A Streetcar Named Desire that’s a rock record? Why isn’t anyone doing it? Instead of writing the trash that is out there. I wanted to do something on that level, always. I came close on Berlin. Pretty close. But this one, for me, from beginning to end, this is it.”
As much as Reed asserts disdain for criticism, the Telegraph interviewer suspects he has been upset by the reaction to "Lulu."
“I think this thing needs a champion. This is for people who are literate," says Reed. "This isn’t 'I cry in my beer cos you f---ed him and ran your truck through my bar.’ You can write 30 of those and move to Nashville. These words – every time I see them I get thrilled because it does it to me. It may do it to no one else, I don’t care. I can’t try any harder. I can’t do any better. And my heart was pure and my soul was pure, too. I went in there to make music with the best guys I could find. And we did.”