Lodger vs. Scary Monsters

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Have less to say off the bat about these two than the other two, which were albums I think about a lot. Going to listen to both of these again before voting. I’m leaning Lodger right now but who knows what the morning might bring?

Poll Results

OptionVotes
Lodger (1979) 60
Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) (1980) 30


Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 00:25 (three years ago) link

S.M. and those who say side 2 is weak are RONG

PaulTMA, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 00:27 (three years ago) link

Lodger. Side two of Scary Monsters isn't weak, but it is noticeably less strong than side one.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 00:35 (three years ago) link

scary monsters is my favorite bowie

na (NA), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 01:06 (three years ago) link

hmm... I like Lodger as a whole more but it never reaches Scary Monsters' heights

flappy bird, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 01:09 (three years ago) link

Still don't know how to vote because it's Lodger vs. "Ashes to Ashes" & "Fashion" m/l to me

flappy bird, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 01:09 (three years ago) link

Lodger and it's not close

Danton Lok (Noodle Vague), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 01:11 (three years ago) link

Yes, Lodger by a country mile.

Monica Kindle (Tom D.), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:00 (three years ago) link

oh shit lodger is way better than i remembered. guess i hadn't listened to it for a while. i think it's gonna get it .

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:04 (three years ago) link

sometimes i feel..... the need to move on...

i wish i had that kind of attitude. on ilx earlier this year i said that i probably would never immigrate to another country. but bowie's arch-cosmopolitanism is inspirational, even if it comes with a side order of alienation, it's a romantic kind. (not unique to this album -- Sometimes you get so lonely / Sometimes you get nowhere /I've lived all over the world /I've left every place.

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:11 (three years ago) link

Oh shit, I’ve always thought it was “I’ve lived all over the world / I’ve lived every place”

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:23 (three years ago) link

It isn't?

Monica Kindle (Tom D.), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:27 (three years ago) link

i think it's left

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:28 (three years ago) link

if you really listen to it, he says "left" but he might just be leaning in to his accent

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:29 (three years ago) link

yeah, all the lyrics websites go with "left" as well. well i'll be!

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:34 (three years ago) link

ok, so i am listening to scary monsters now and it's better than i remember too. specifically "up the hill backwards"

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:37 (three years ago) link

it's gonna be scurry monsters for me. i even love the less-remembered tracks (the chorus of "scream like a baby" is one of my favorite moments in his entire career)

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:39 (three years ago) link

i have much less peter gabriel listening experience so this take might be complete bullshit, but i feel like his early albums make interesting counterpoints to Scary Monsters. they both use similar sound palettes, same broad category of "art rock", musicians with pretty much unlimited resources to help realize their ideas. but while they both explore pretty dark themes at times, bowie's stuff comes out sounding so much more FUN .

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:42 (three years ago) link

Side 1 of Scary Monsters is just fantastic, one of the strongest things he ever did - but I don't much care for side 2, they're almost like two completely different pieces of work. So it's Lodger for me, there's nothing on there I don't like, I love the whole travelogue feel, I even like Red Money better than Sister Midnight (probably because I heard the former before the latter so for me it's the "real" version). However, reworking an Iggy song obviously gave Bowie ideas a few years later and they were not good ideas ...

Zelda Zonk, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:44 (three years ago) link

if he kept up a streak of masterpieces any longer than he did it would have been creepy

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:45 (three years ago) link

bowie has never sounded as out of it (not in a good way) as he does on "kingdom come".

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 02:47 (three years ago) link

THE LODGER

Andy K, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 03:11 (three years ago) link

TS: the cover art

i guess Lodger? i've lost count of the number of times i took it out of the plastic sleeve, thinking it was sideways

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 03:16 (three years ago) link

yeah ok upon only a mental revisiting it's easily Lodger. forgot to mention that "Move On" is one of my favorite Bowie songs, never heard anything like that backwards chanting

flappy bird, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 05:29 (three years ago) link

Red Sails isn’t very good

X-Prince Protégé (sonnyboy), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 06:06 (three years ago) link

red sails is one of the best bowie songs wtf

princess of hell (BradNelson), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 06:11 (three years ago) link

No-one's mentioned Teenage Wildlife yet? That song is top 5 Bowie for me, and it alone makes me vote for Scary Monsters.

the word dog doesn't bark (anagram), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 06:30 (three years ago) link

'Teenage Wildlife' has a horrendous vocal - I love the track otherwise. 'Red Sails' is one of Bowies best songs of this period!

THE HINTERLAND! THE HINTERLAND! etc.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 06:51 (three years ago) link

Apparently there's no thread for Loving the Alien / Tonight so I put this here.

I have finally given a chance to that album/period which I had always avoided following the release of the boxset and this remake/remodel :
https://www.treblezine.com/remake-remodel-david-bowie-tonight-alternate-tracklist/

I have made a version of that album that is not exactly the same as the one in the remake/remodel but it makes a pretty strong album with :

Blue Jean
Zeroes
That's Motivation
Loving the Alien (extended dub mix)

Absolute Beginners (long version)
Neighborhood Threat
Dancing With The Boys
This Is Not America

The tracklisting may change since I'm only starting to listen to the boxset but so far, it's my favourite 80s Bowie album (yes, Scary Monsters included) !

AlXTC from Paris, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 09:24 (three years ago) link

but the vocal on Teenage Wildlife is EVERYTHING

an incoherent crustacean (MatthewK), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 12:06 (three years ago) link

I've grown to admire how Bowie uses his voice as a lead guitar on Scary Monsters.

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 12:10 (three years ago) link

^^^literally the only good thing about that album

slack thompson (Drugs A. Money), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 19:33 (three years ago) link

Oh yeah and Ashes to Ashes

slack thompson (Drugs A. Money), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 19:33 (three years ago) link

and "Up The Hill Backwards"

sleeve, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 19:36 (three years ago) link

I like Lodger as a whole more but it never reaches Scary Monsters' heights

― flappy bird,

agree with this take

sleeve, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 19:36 (three years ago) link

ashes to ashes is certainly a high point in bowie's oeuvre. it was the first bowie song i ever fell in love with.

"time and again i tell myself / i'll stay clean tonight"

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 19:55 (three years ago) link

i have no idea how i am going to vote

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 19:55 (three years ago) link

lodger is maybe the bowie album which has the most obvious eno influence. a lot of the instrumental parts sound like precursors to My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. and speaking of Byrne, it's very easy to imagine "Repetition" as a More Songs... era Talking Heads track. even the drums sound like Tina Weymouth's boyfriend.

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 19:58 (three years ago) link

there is something more indie sounding about it. i don't know if that makes sense. but with low, heroes and lodger i envision bowie, eno and visconti together in the city, vibing on ideas with no real idea from the outset of what the finished project will be. how much of this is myth and how much is due to actual qualities in the music, i don't know.

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 20:00 (three years ago) link

can't you even cook

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 20:02 (three years ago) link

um, really bad form to insult me in my own poll when i'm talking about my favorite music

Trϵϵship, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 20:04 (three years ago) link

i have no idea how i am going to vote
― Trϵϵship, Wednesday, November 21, 2018 11:55 AM (nine minutes ago)

Me either.

Gonna listen to `em back to back when I get home today.

Totally different head. Totally. (Austin), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 20:07 (three years ago) link

I love the singing on Teenage Wildlife, might push it above Heroes for me, but I tend to like "ugly" vocals

na (NA), Wednesday, 21 November 2018 22:02 (three years ago) link

voted lodger.
but …
currently listening to SM (ryko edition) on headphones and already regretting my choice.
these two albums are way too close to make a definitive choice.
I love them both more than the rest of bowies catalogue.
and yes, the singing on TW is the whole point of the song.

mark e, Friday, 23 November 2018 00:57 (three years ago) link

Scary Monsters is all-time classic

PaulTMA, Friday, 23 November 2018 01:17 (three years ago) link

Both are magnificent but if I have to choose it's Lodger for me.

Valentijn, Friday, 23 November 2018 07:23 (three years ago) link

it’s lodger

princess of hell (BradNelson), Saturday, 24 November 2018 07:41 (three years ago) link

Lodger because Bowie comes across as being sympathetic whereas on Scary Monsters he's being (or at least pretending to be) a dick.

Chequers Plays Pop (snoball), Saturday, 24 November 2018 10:25 (three years ago) link

(at least half of the time)

Chequers Plays Pop (snoball), Saturday, 24 November 2018 10:26 (three years ago) link

I might go out today and buy a shiny new remastered CD edition of Lodger to complement my bashed up old second hand vinyl copy

Duke, Saturday, 24 November 2018 12:24 (three years ago) link

Huh. I've had similar conversations with the same generation, and they felt no ill will toward Bowie: they thought Let's Dance was a move as unpredicted as Young Americans and, remembering their experience with that album, held their fire. And everyone loved "Modern Love."

It was Tonight that made these people say, "Thanks, mate, for the memories."

― I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, November 25, 2018 6:41 PM (one hour ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Yup, this sounds about right to me.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Sunday, 25 November 2018 20:37 (three years ago) link

I don't know, the blonde hair, the pastel suits, I think quite a few long time Bowie fans were cringing at all that. Plus substandard music.

Monica Kindle (Tom D.), Sunday, 25 November 2018 20:43 (three years ago) link

As a great man once said though, time flexes like a whore, falls wanking to the floor, and you can’t expect any artist to keep up the same level forever.

Trϵϵship, Sunday, 25 November 2018 20:58 (three years ago) link

Nothing substandard at all about the title track, 'Modern Love', 'China Girl' etc. His image on that album was very much of its time. You can understand - in hindsight - why he did it... he was trying to wrong-foot everyone who he felt had pinched his act.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Sunday, 25 November 2018 20:59 (three years ago) link

I feel that album represents a drop though. It’s not as interesting as its predecessors.

Trϵϵship, Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:14 (three years ago) link

Few songs sounded like "Modern Love" in 1983 even in this year of peak New Wave MTV crossover

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:15 (three years ago) link

Perhaps not a dip in quality but a huge change in thesis. It feels (songwriting-wise) like cynical pop pastiche-- the "cynicism" being the overly trite lyrical approach rather than, say, the intentional cynicism of genre-precedent-to-"Let's Dance" songs like "Fame" and "Young Americans"

fgti is for (flamboyant goon tie included), Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:15 (three years ago) link

His image on that album was very much of its time

Exactly.

Monica Kindle (Tom D.), Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:16 (three years ago) link

Plus his version of "China Girl" blows.

Monica Kindle (Tom D.), Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:17 (three years ago) link

Fgti otm. The album is a return to the kind of warholoan “pastiche” that he had left behind starting with Low.

Trϵϵship, Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:20 (three years ago) link

To be clear, I'm not defending the album besides "Modern Love," "Criminal World," and listening to Chic shimmy in "Without You."

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:51 (three years ago) link

I will also step up for "Cat People"

sleeve, Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:55 (three years ago) link

LD came out my senior year of high school and was considered at least OK even among the fanatics I knew, as Alfred notes Tonight was the dealbreaker in my scene for sure

sleeve, Sunday, 25 November 2018 21:56 (three years ago) link

I remember having a conversation with a Bowie fan who was old enough to experience every album as they were released, and he described the disappointment felt in the Bowie fan community with the arrival of "Let's Dance" as being seismic, and that the subsequent revisionism of that album as being "good" was frustrating. I never really got it until "Modern Love" came on in the coffee shop yesterday morning when I was feeling annoyed and I listened and thought "he's right this is really disappointing"

this was me and my friends except Let's Dance was the FIRST Bowie album to come out since we'd all become fanatics. We were incredibly excited, and utterly disappointed. All but two of us skipped the tour - who wants to hear that stuff? We liked "Modern Love" OK but it was a giant, giant letdown.

she carries a torch. two torches, actually (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Sunday, 25 November 2018 22:05 (three years ago) link

The Hunger was released the same year as Let's Dance, right? Like, that movie has got (soon to be defunct) Bowie fanatics Bauhaus playing 'Bela Lugosi's Dead' at the very beginning... also, didn't he do 'Under Pressure' with Queen in between Scary Monsters and Let's Dance? The lyric to that was apparently written almost completely by Bowie.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Sunday, 25 November 2018 22:17 (three years ago) link

the classic karaoke conundrum: what to do during the intro:

Mmm num ba de
Dum bum ba be
Doo buh dum ba beh beh

then you think you're in the clear. then twenty seconds pass, and fucking

Um ba ba be
Um ba ba be
De day da
Ee day da- that's okay

Karl Malone, Sunday, 25 November 2018 22:34 (three years ago) link

on the other hand, one time i saw someone NAIL all of those little lyrical burps and it was transcendent

Karl Malone, Sunday, 25 November 2018 22:34 (three years ago) link

that's why I always pick the Bowie part. Friends go for the flamboyant Mercury part while I hang back and go "oooh ooh oooh ooooooh"

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 25 November 2018 23:41 (three years ago) link

If you glue the two LPs together so that you have side two of Lodger followed by side one of Scary Monsters you get Bowie's second-best album. In my opinion. Don't do this with actual records.

Ashley Pomeroy, Sunday, 25 November 2018 23:59 (three years ago) link

Under Pressure has the unique distinction of being both featured act’s worst hit single— I prefer friggin Dancing In The Street, Blue Jean, even Thursday’s Child if we’re getting down to it

I was sure that I liked the re-recording of Look Back In Anger but I’m surely ambivalent about it now. The drums on the original are... amazing

fgti is for (flamboyant goon tie included), Monday, 26 November 2018 03:21 (three years ago) link

fuckin’ dennis davis

princess of hell (BradNelson), Monday, 26 November 2018 05:37 (three years ago) link

ok you goon tie although I don't agree, I can see how you might hate "under pressure" and I can accept an argument that "blue jean" is better but preferring "dancing in the street" cmon now that thing is a catastrophe

she carries a torch. two torches, actually (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Monday, 26 November 2018 12:03 (three years ago) link

I prefer an innocuous catastrophe like "Dancing..." over a song that is so lazy-in-execution and trite-about-a-social-issue and inexplicably refuses to exit the popular canon or my ambient listening experience. I once thought that if music obeys some karmic laws, then I should be grateful for a turd like "Under Pressure" because it allowed an perfect song like "Gypsy Woman" to exist

fgti is for (flamboyant goon tie included), Monday, 26 November 2018 15:37 (three years ago) link

an innocuous catastrophe!

I like queer. You like queer, senator? (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 26 November 2018 15:43 (three years ago) link

"Dancing in the Streets" was more of an outrage than a catastrophe though. I like "Under Pressure" btw.

Monica Kindle (Tom D.), Monday, 26 November 2018 15:46 (three years ago) link

"Dancing" is aggressively embarrassing!

she carries a torch. two torches, actually (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Monday, 26 November 2018 15:47 (three years ago) link

i don't care if everyone's seen it, it was all worth it because of the version of the video that takes out the music

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BHkhIjG0DKc

Karl Malone, Monday, 26 November 2018 18:11 (three years ago) link

Under Pressure has the unique distinction of being both featured act’s worst hit single— I prefer friggin Dancing In The Street, Blue Jean, even Thursday’s Child if we’re getting down to it

I couldn't disagree more with this!

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Monday, 26 November 2018 18:27 (three years ago) link

Well, honestly, a large contributor to my allergy to that song is that it seems that the rest of the world disagrees with me and will continue to celebrate it, I'm pretty sure I'll be having my guts eaten by crows in Hell to the sounds of "prshr ON! PEEP! ULL! ppl ON! STREETS!"

fgti is for (flamboyant goon tie included), Monday, 26 November 2018 19:41 (three years ago) link

Apparently Mercury and Bowie argued like mad while mixing that track.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Monday, 26 November 2018 20:40 (three years ago) link

I keep saying this every time the video for 'Dancing...' gets posted, but it's glorious, Bowie and Jagger trying to out-do each other in every frame.

Chequers Plays Pop (snoball), Monday, 26 November 2018 20:42 (three years ago) link

I wonder what Keef thought of it (not a lot, I'd be willing to bet)

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Monday, 26 November 2018 20:46 (three years ago) link

I imagine he thought quite a bit of it, actually. `Course it was all negative. But, y'know, no good deed, etc. etc. . . .

Totally different head. Totally. (Austin), Monday, 26 November 2018 20:47 (three years ago) link

Well, yeah... that's pretty much what I was saying!

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Monday, 26 November 2018 20:52 (three years ago) link

I know there was some tension in the Stones camp regarding Jagger getting a solo deal to begin with (Keef says as much in his book), but I can just picture Keef watching the 'Dancing in the Street' video all like "christ, look at this pair of twats" ...

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Monday, 26 November 2018 20:55 (three years ago) link

Wasn’t Let’s Dance his first album for EMI? Didn’t the label do that extravagant “Let’s rent a mansion and invite the media over for a decadent press conference” thing? I decidedly feel like part of that record’s aesthetic was forged in “I need to justify this giant wad I just banked.”

Naive Teen Idol, Monday, 26 November 2018 20:58 (three years ago) link

I still find it funny that albums like Station to Station and Low (indeed all of his classic albums, for that matter) were issued on RCA, which never struck me as being a particularly "cool" record label. Although this might have something to do with the fact I first saw those orange labels on older relatives Paul Anka/Jim Reeves LP's etc.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Monday, 26 November 2018 21:11 (three years ago) link

Yes they were a pretty square label, they had Nilsson, Mike Nesmith, er... Lou Reed!

Monica Kindle (Tom D.), Tuesday, 27 November 2018 01:31 (three years ago) link

Oh yeah, Metal Machine Music was on RCA too! Feels like the kind of thing that would have been more at home on Virgin Records or something.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Tuesday, 27 November 2018 21:04 (three years ago) link

Well Lou claimed he wanted Red Seal, RCA's classic division to put it out and I hope the story is true cuz the idea of the insectoid drug-bug era Lou playing a rough of "MMM" for some suited square trying to convince him it was "modern composition" is too good

Lodger is the correct answer.

chr1sb3singer, Tuesday, 27 November 2018 21:34 (three years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Friday, 14 December 2018 00:01 (three years ago) link

Teenage Wildlife wot swung it

kraudive, Friday, 14 December 2018 17:44 (three years ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Saturday, 15 December 2018 00:01 (three years ago) link

gah, the mythos of the “Berlin” trilogy

an incoherent crustacean (MatthewK), Saturday, 15 December 2018 00:09 (three years ago) link

and the reality that side 2 of Scary Monsters kinda sucks

sleeve, Saturday, 15 December 2018 00:28 (three years ago) link

I’ll allow it

an incoherent crustacean (MatthewK), Saturday, 15 December 2018 01:29 (three years ago) link

i expected it to be closer.

Trϵϵship, Saturday, 15 December 2018 02:17 (three years ago) link

me too

sleeve, Saturday, 15 December 2018 02:19 (three years ago) link

I had a feeling that Lodger would take this, to be honest. Those that like the album seem to really like it, and there's quite a lot of people on here that have passionately praised it. Scary Monsters is highly praised too, but not to the same degree on here.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Saturday, 15 December 2018 22:12 (three years ago) link

three years pass...

Scary Monsters

Happy 75th DB!

Davey D, Saturday, 8 January 2022 20:18 (one week ago) link


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