The Velvet Underground and Nico ’66



Title: The Velvet Underground and Nico
Director: Andy Warhol
Year:1966
Language: English
16mm, black and white

Even ardent fans of the velvet underground will probably move uneasily in their chairs during this picture. The movie includes everything, except for a VU performance. The band IS there, and they are playing, but it is an incoherent jam session from hell rather then something familiar. Warhol accompanies the music with repeating focus shifts, lighting experiments, bizarre camera movements, etc., all of which combined create an hypnotic trance-like effect, not to be forgotten soon. Warhol also chooses to let only the diegtic sound from the amplifiers be heard, and thus whole sequences, such as the cops who arrive to stop the show on account of various complaints from neighbors, remain unheard and eluded to instead of crudely “shown”. This is a revolutionary experiment in rock videos, even in today’s standards.

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22 Replies to “The Velvet Underground and Nico ’66”

  1. Finished reading about this period in the book "Up-tight", and I'm very glad the Velvets became more palatable on record. May have been shocking at the time, but now this just seems dull.

  2. Remember when you 1st got an electric guitar and you and some of yer friends said "Hey we should get stoned and jam sometime" and maybe one of the guys has a camera… and also some girl comes too… so you film it just for posterity is all…
    Well my stuff and I'll bet some of yours too is miles more fun, spirited and interesting than this…..but then way in the future some snob deems this New York Minutia Mess "Museum Worthy" of all things.
    Pure FU.

  3. All dark glasses,and strumming an endless E-chord ,there was rightly so a short time when this was considered artsy.In some ways somewhat opportunistic,because it needed a fake blonde ice queen to make it palatable and 'valid'.Dig these creatures no end,but after ten minutes of cat wailing ,checking out the rest of the timeline seemed  the only option left.No disrespect ofcourse..The camera "work" sucked big time.

  4. I haven't forgotten Nico! In spite of herself she rocked! Nico was very likely Dylan's 'Rita' from 'Motorpsycho Nightmare' 'who looked like she stepped out of La Dolce Vita''? Dead at 49 from heat-exhaustion of all things! She (unwisely) habitually rode her bicycle in the hot summer sun (overly)dressed from head to toe (in black!). That was July 1988. That was back when I thought 49 was 'old'! Her son Ari would be about 50 now. I thought he was dead from drugs! I guess I don't know everything!!

  5. -world.To his credit he made himself their benefactor. Without Andy there probably would have been no Velvet Underground. Andy was well into his 30's on seeing them he was an opera fan! He was moving into multimedia and wanted some rock and roll to construct his multimedia art with, not to make a musical statement. Except for this 'Noise' film and Poor Richard's 1966 (no Lou R.) there is no known 60's footage of them playing a set. With all the damned cameras around then there should have been..

  6. I wonder about the story of this the so-called 1966 'Velvet Underground And Nico' non-performance non-song document film.I'm pretty sure it's also known as 'Noise'. To be a fly on the wall in the 60's Warhol 'Factory'! Or Hitler's bunker…It's Warhol blasphemy I know but by some accounts (Victor Bockris), Andy's goodwill for the band and also his Warhol Factory entourage extended really only so far. IMO and strictly speaking Andy was a supreme narcissist. He wanted The Velvets to remain in his-

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