Album review: Charles Douglas - The Lives Of Charles Douglas

An unexpected, Velvet-y and surprisingly good NYC rock record from, err... 1997

This 13-year-old record from Charles Douglas is an intriguing surprise.

Recorded off-the-cuff with outtake remarks left in and produced by The Velvet Underground’s Maureen ‘Moe’ Tucker in 1997, this ‘rediscovered’ record is a bit of a freewheeling gem.

While opener Summertime recalls the puppy-dog enthusiasm of Daniel Johnston, its range soon settles around The Ramones, The Strokes and a million other scuzzed-up garage rockers from NYC.

It’s simple, but it works; the lo-fi Lou Reed-ish ramblings of Under The Command and Slowly Wasted, among others, pull you into Douglas’ grimy, compelling world of girls, drugs and fast food.

‘Big money, big prizes; fame comes in different sizes’ he blares on the Stones-does-garage of Good Luck. Perhaps this time round he’ll get his just desserts.

4 stars

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