This month sees the release Femme Fatale, a double-LP collection of live and studio tracks by Nico.
It’s the first vinyl edition of the compilation, which was originally issued on CD by Jungle Records in 2002. It includes righteously gloomy versions of ‘All Tomorrow’s Parties’ and ‘Procession’, recorded by legendary Joy Division producer Martin Hannett for Nico & The Invisible Girls’ 1982 EP, Procession. The other tracks on Femme Fatale are atmospheric live cuts culled from the former Velvet Underground singer’s 1983 tour (specifically performances in London, Copenhagen, Utrecht and Amsterdam). As well as nine Nico originals, there are interpretations of songs by Bob Dylan, Jackson Browne, David Bowie and Lou Reed.
Christa Päffgen AKA Nico was a German singer, composer, model and actress. An original Warhol Superstar, she appeared in the shock-haired artist’s Chelsea Girls film as well as Fellini’s La Dolce Vita, and of course contributed vocals to The Velvet Underground’s iconic debut album. The dramatic, ruthlessly avant-garde solo LPs that she recorded post-Velvets with John Cale – particularly The Marble Index (1969), Desertshore (1970), The End (1974), Drama of Exile (1981) and the synth-driven Camera Obscura (1985) – are extraordinary, navigating sonic austerity and opulence with supernatural aplomb.
Vinyl Lovers’ 180g edition of Femme Fatale includes a detailed Nico biography by Nina Antonia.
A1. All Tomorrow’s Parties (Lou Reed)
A2. Procession (Nico)
A3. Frozen Warnings (Nico)
A4. Saeta (Nico)
B1. Purple Lips (Nico)
B2. These Days (Jackson Browne)
B3. I’ll Keep It With Mine (Bob Dylan)
B4. The Sphinx (Nico)
B5. Procession (Nico)
C1. Heroes (David Bowie)
C2. Sixty/Forty (Nico)
C3. Femme Fatale (Lou Reed)
D1. I’m Waiting For The Man (Lou Reed)
D2. König (Nico)
D3. Orly Flight (Nico)
D4. Secret Side (Nico)
D5. Femme Fatale (Lou Reed)