In 1967 The Velvet Underground deliberately shattered every pop music convention. They were atonal, they were inharmonious, they wallowed in feedback, they were deadpan, they wrote songs about all the wrong things. Not many people noticed them back then, but those who did had their consciousness irrevocably expanded. It’s hard to underestimate how unacceptable a song about heroin was in those days. Even the wildest experimenters of the times wouldn’t dare to go there. Never mind that it was more likely than not an exercise in journalistic verisimilitude on Lou Reed’s part. No one had ever written about taking heroin before, or at least not openly. And though the Velvets are now credited as earth shakingly influential, in reality not that much has changed. Most people still don’t know who they are, can’t abide their weirdness and aren’t even interested in the most diluted of their musical progeny. The Velvet Underground remain an acquired taste unpalatable to the mainstream. So far ahead of their time the world will probably never fully catch up. Nor do we want it to. What then would we ‘in the know’ have to talk about?