David Bowie - over-rated or justifiably hated?

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.....'cause it seems like nobody's just lukewarm about good ol' "The Dame" as the amusing english adult mag Q amusingly calls him - he's either some kind of messiah or a phonus-balonus dilettante populariser of the ideas of superior & ignored talents like, ummmm, Marc Bolan...i've kind of held both positions, thought he was great when i was a teenager, decided he was IN LEAGUE WITH THE DEVIL'S PENIS shortly after. But y'know, 1st a couple songs & before long some whole albums started to creep their way back into my affections over the years subsequent, & these days i'd count him as a solid entertainer, maker of many neat pop/rock/fop songs & records, & not least of course the worst lyricist to've polluted the stereo speakers of the discerning since i can't even think of anyone, ummmm, Scott Walker?
Anyway. What's your angle?

duane zarakov, Tuesday, 5 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Considering he's a Scott Walker fanatic, that makes perfect sense. ;-)

Astoundingly great. Generally speaking, I actually consider the studio albums he did throughout the seventies, from _The Man Who Sold the World_ to _Scary Monsters_ (okay, fair enough, that was 1980), to be the most amazing run of unqualified artistic smash after smash any high profile UK or American artist has ever done. Every year he had at least one new album, I believe, and the fact that the same guy did _Hunky Dory_, _Ziggy Stardust_, _Diamond Dogs_, _Young Americans_, _Station to Station_, _Low_ and _"Heroes"_, among others, is just breathtaking to me. He's coasted after that and had some definite disasters in the eighties and early nineties, but more recent songs like "We Prick You" and "Looking for Satellites," among others, show he can still put it together when he wants to, indifferent backing musicians aside. I just picked up Nicholas Pegg's hyperexhaustive _The Complete David Bowie_ this past weekend and plan to read every last page.

I hear he's influential as well.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 5 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

With David Bowie Rock music as an artform grew up. We had the Shakespeare, the Beethoven, and the Rasputin of rock all rolled into one. Disagree with Duane re: the lyrics. Bowie was / is an amazing expressionist storyteller. Agree with Ned re: the 70s output. Above and beyond that, a total creative catalyst to my generation of musicians and artists. Unfortunately slumbering deep as Sleeping Beauty for the last 20 years or so. Will even the last trump wake the bounder from his beauty sleep? If only he'd split up with his band and his wife, start snorting coke again, and go and live with Iggy in an auto repair shop in Neukoln...

Momus, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Well I admit I'm not speaking from a greatly enlightened state of being ie. haven't heard all the 70's albums etc BUT...Bowie for me is one of those artists that I'll never completely, er, DIG because the first things of his that I heard were so awful. At age 17 I picked up a cassette copy of the "Space Oddity" album minus cover for a dollar. I thought it was OK esp. that toy synth thing on the title track but MY GOD what about that "I WANT TO LIVE!" song and that stupid one about "The Sun Machine". But the thing that really killed it for me was "The Laughing Gnome". In case you don't know that was a Decca single that he released in the late 60's. The thing with this song (which must have been done during the Chipmunks craze) is that Bowie does this painful (and VERY ENGLISH) comedy routine with a "gnome" ie. a sped up take of his own voice. The chorus goes "Ha ha ha, he he he, I'm the laughing gnome and you can't catch me!" But what was EVEN WORSE was the b-side: when the sax solo kicks in Bowie says (not kidding here): "YOUR MIND, BLOW IT." So, I dunno, I've heard lots of his good stuff since then but just can't quite repress my first impressions. Oh well...Mick Ronson's good though eh?

pat kraus, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

How could anyone hate Bowie? Never mind ... just about everything he's done since Scary Monsters answers that question.

Still, I'm with Ned -- Bowie's output from 1970 through 1980 was nothing short of remarkable. I'm most partial to the Station to Station to Scary Monsters era stuff, though I like the Ziggy-era stuff quite a bit too. His lyrics are hit-and-miss, but there's still some pretty classic ones ("Life on Mars," "Andy Warhol," "Repetition," "Beauty and the Beast"). After a ten-year stretch like he had, I suppose that Bowie can be forgiven for just coasting thereafter.

Tadeusz Suchodolski, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Trust me, Pat -- you only heard the sixties stuff there. That's a different story. ;-)

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Oh, if only he'd remained IN LEAGUE WITH THE DEVIL'S PENIS. That's where he went wrong. So anyhow, I'm in agreement with everything Ned and Momus stated. The classic to end all classics. Not overrated at all, really.

I never understood the complaints about Bowie's lyrics--at least post-Space Oddity. I remember reading a Lester Bangs review in the 70s where he made fun of the "like some cat from Japan" line in "Ziggy Stardust". I didn't get what was so bad about the line, still don't. I mean it doesn't make complete sense, but it doesn't make me cringe. All those Creem writers seemed to regard him as some evil Brechtian ice princess poseur, as if there was anything wrong with that. Also, he was the man who nearly destroyed "Raw Power", I guess that might have something to do with it. You don't mess with the Stooges!

And, finally, I think plenty of people--like, most Americans-- are lukewarm about David Bowie.

Arthur, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I have a different and rather non-musicological perspective to add. At 8 years I heard 'China Girl' and 'Let's Dance.' This was during the aerobics craze and we had to do aerobics at school to 'Let's Dance.' Naturally all this music, which I could barely understand, sounded spooky. David Bowie was a mysterious and poetic figure: 'Sway through the crowd to an empty space' - I didn't understand what crowd he was talking about - I thought by space he meant the solar system. (But then, I thought that 'After the Ball was Over,' an old song we sung in assembly, was a tragedy about a deflated rubber ball without a girlfriend.) And when he said 'Visions of swastikas in my head - plans for everyone!' I think - it was the closest a pre-adolescent could come to longing for - something bad!. . .Also in this category of disturbing formative aesthetic moments was the video for Tom Petty's 'Don't Come Around Here No More' with Alice (of Alice in Wonderland) on the table being sliced up and eaten. I wish I could still be disturbed so easily . . . in a way, how we take pop so seriously on this site is like an attempt to regain that youthful suspense of judgement. No judgement on Bowie, then, obviously. Just thanks for the idea of some dark Heathcliff like dictator with 'visions of swastikas in his head' that I guess I later transmuted into crushes on nasty boys.

Maryann, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

One of my cousins had a "Diamond Dogs" poster in his bedroom during the late Seventies. It used to creep me out big time when I was a little kid. I also remember seeing the TV Special from whence sprang the "Little Drummer Boy" duet with Bing Crosby -- I must have five or so, and I also remember my mother saying something to the effect of "what's a nice man like Bing Crosby doing singing with a freak like David Bowie?" And I thought "Golden Years" was the absolutely worst song when I first heard it -- then again, I was 6 and it's now one of my favorites.

God, the Seventies were awesome!

Tadeusz Suchodolski, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

It was Iggy's line, but yes, he did deliver that one with relish and then some. I grew up with all those singles, so I can't hate _Let's Dance_, really (and it's got some strange, interesting stuff on it like "Cat People (Putting Out Fire)" and "Ricochet"), but as an unfortunate mark he felt he had to live up to for the next few years, it's a problem effort. Certainly it's also the only stuff I've heard with Stevie Ray Vaughn's involvement that I ever gave a damn for, but that's another thread. ;-)

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I've been exposed to Bowie my whole life, having a mother whose crazy about him and a couple of his 45s from the 80s I made Mom buy me when I was really young. Hey, my "Blue Jean" 45 is *gasp* blue! I didn't really seek him out until recently, though. He had always been sort of THERE, and I certainly liked him, but now I'm beginning to love him. Low and Heroes are mind-blowingly good, as are most of his singles (I've had Changesbowie for a few years), and I'm looking very forward to exploring his catalogue in greater depth.

Clarke B., Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

cash cow, evil bitch, sicofrantic (sic) lou-reed ripoff boring reinvent yrself whore. But I like some of his songs I guess.

Geoff, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

classic obviously, mainly the 70s stuff, which i guess is the party line. bits of the 60s stuff are good too though, d.jones & the lower third's 'can't help thinking about me' is great (from about, what, 65?). i can't help having a soft spot for 'london boys' too, i love the lyrics to that...

surprises me that its taken this long to have a bowie thread. and, um, isn't reinvention a good thing?

gareth, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Rubbish apart Young Americans, which is the only album which lets you in on the fact that he came from the South London borders...

Mark Morris, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Alpha: Young Americans, Station To Station, Low Side 1, letting Mott The Hoople record his best-ever song.

Beta: Hunky Dory, Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane, Low Side 2, early Mod singles, "Absolute Beginners", Heroes except title track, "Dame" nickname (orig. a Smash Hits coinage)

Gamma: Man Who Sold..., Diamond Dogs, Lodger, Scary Monsters, Let's Dance, "Under Pressure"

Delta: Space Oddity, Pin Ups, "Heroes", Tonight, live albums.

Omega: Everything from Never Let Me Down onwards. Continued press attention whenever rubbish new record gets released.

Tom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I think the answer is "both". When he's good, he's utterly mind- blowing, and when he's bad, he's putrid. I used to think this was governed purely by time-line periods, but that was until my BF (a Bowie obsessive- imagine that) started playing me true clunkers from "The Man Who Sold The World" and I relistened to some of the 80s stuff I formerly turned my nose up at, and realised that most of Let's Dance is still brilliant.

He's an artist who is not afraid to go to extremes, even if it results in some bad art, or even worse, him looking like a fool. Sometimes the results are the sheer baroque poetry like "Hunky Dory" and sometimes, well, it's crap. But still. He still manages to intrigue.

masonic boom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Ooh, do I get to be the one to say that _Earthling_ is somewhat underrated round these parts? Of course I only started to like it when my taxonomic dance-faction friend NB stated that she hated it because "it ruined Jungle for everyone else".

mark s, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Oh, Tom! [/felicity kendall]

How can you put everything I hold dear about Bowie into the Betas? Early mod singles? Classic!!! "Let Me Sleep Beside You" is one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard in my life. That cello/12-string interaction is just pure gorgeousness.

OK, but then again I actually *like* Laughing Gnome and Please, Mr. Gravedigger, so I'll shut up now. Ahem.

masonic boom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Innovate, schminnovate. Bowie wins because he made "Rebel, Rebel" which is one of the great singles of all time. He also made other great singles, but none as great as that. Also, Lodger is awful. Also, Changes is an awful song. Also, Sufferagette City is his second best single, and perhaps in the top 200 singles of all time, and perhaps in the top 100.

Sterling Clover, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Beta still means it's good! I don't know the song you're mentioning though Kate.

Tom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

'Lodger' is great! It's got "Boys Keep Swinging" on it too! I always thought "Rebel Rebel" would've been OK if they cut the last two redundant minutes off it.

tarden, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

The first time I ever bought older music (I was 13, I think), the record was a Bowie comp called Fame & Fashion (12 fantastic songs, starts with "Space Oddity, ends with "Ashes To Ashes", which immediately became my favorite song) and it just astounded me that someone could try so many different things over such a stretch of time and make me love all of it. Instant favorite artist.

Patrick, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Ah, 'Rebel Rebel'! I still get requests for that whenever I'm DJing, and always feel reluctant to play it because it goes on for so darn long. And it's surprisingly difficult to dance to...

That said, for every great Bowie moment there's an absolute clanger. 'Running Gun Blues' from The Man Who Sold The World springs to mind ('I see the corpses left and right, I find I'm not so tidyyyy'), as does 'Time' ('falls wanking to the floor' - er, explain further Mr Bowie) from Aladdin Sane, and those blessed silly voices at the end of 'Bewlay Brothers', which I realise is a homage to Bowie's own tragic brother but it just sounds ridiculous. The song is beautiful, and genuinely moving up until the 'starving for me gravy' moment...

I consider myself a huge Bowie fan, and I guess one of the most endearing things about him is that he can at once be so influential and at the same time responsible for some of the most ridiculous career faux-pas imaginable. 'Labyrinth' fright-wig, anyone?

Paul Strange, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Freakily enough, I know someone who loves Labyrinth solely because they fancy Bowie in that frightwig.

Richard Tunnicliffe, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Didn't he dress up like a genie? And then form the Tin Machine? Could anybody else've gotten away with such career ending hijinks? I have nothing but questions about Bowie.

Steven James, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Tin Machine can be explained away as an indulgence, but the decision to allow the odious Reeves Gabrels to destroy all subsequent output with his innapropriate guitar noodling is more questionable. Does he know some deep dark blackmail-worthy secret about Bowie or something?

tarden, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

"Reeves, just play a chord"

-from the book, 'Things David Bowie Never Said'.

Steven James, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Freakily enough, I know someone who loves Labyrinth solely because they fancy Bowie in that frightwig.

A lot of goth girls seem to be totally obsessed with that movie for that reason. I never quite got that, though the movie is okay. Bowie looks too much like Linda Evans on Dynasty.

Doesn't a certain ILM poster own this movie on dvd? ;-)

Oh, and as far as Bowie's classic status, lots of posters here have stated the case far more eloquently than I ever could.

Nicole, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Hooray! After complaining to Paul that he didn't have any of the early Mod stuff, he went out and came home with a singles compliation which includes the mind-numbingly lovely "Let Me Sleep Beside You". I have also been reassured of my position that Laughing Gnome is pure hilarity and utter classic. A great deal of the rest sounds startlingly like Blur b-sides circa 1993, tho.

I've never seen Labyrinth, but I have a funny feeling we'll be watching it tonight... weex!

masonic boom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

The Ken Pitt / Tommy Steele years are compellingly strange for the same reason that Bowie is compelling in Alan Yentob's 'Cracked Actor' documentary, and in Nic Roeg's brilliant 'The Man Who Fell To Earth': it's that combination of space mutant and conservative Englishman which is so odd. It's omnipresent in Bowie music as well as Bowie style: he thinks he's an 'all round entertainer' (or, gawd help us, a 'banc'), but he's a lot weirder than that. Scratch any apparently 'normal' British person and you'll find, somewhere deep inside them, a lunatic, an invert or child who believes in gnomes, elves and fairies. Bowie knew that. (He even pretended to be a fairy for several years.)

A 60s period vaudeville song like 'Uncle Arthur', about a man who refuses to grow up, is Ray Davies style social observation as noted by an extra-terrestrial. It betrays deep sympathy for the oddball. The songs about children, like 'There Is A Happy Land', are childhood seen from within. I particularily love the little-known 'When I'm Five', which could easily have been horribly winsome, but is freshened by a feel for the strangeness of a child's vision (reflected in the strange language). Even the much-maligned 'Gnome' has something oddly affecting going on, despite the cheerfully bad puns and cheap tech-gimmicks: is it a schizophrenic's overheard conversation with himself?

Such contrasts are typical of a man who, in 1975, wore only plain preppy clothes he ordered from the Brooks Brothers catalogue -- but made even such unpromising material look rakishly Martian. He is quintessentially British, yet quintessentially Other. Every oddball's Invisible Friend. As Roger Daltry once observed, The Guv'nor.

Momus, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I thought the goths were hot for that Bowie vampire movie with the Bauhaus track on it and the girl on girl action. That's not Labyrinth is it?

Steven James, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I thought the goths were hot for that Bowie vampire movie with the Bauhaus track on it and the girl on girl action. That's not Labyrinth is it?

No, that's the Hunger. Goths seem to like that one too, but it seems like I always hear them going on about Labyrinth.

Nicole, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Labrinyth is the one where he plays some guy named Jared and this girl who is Jennifer Whatsherface With the Boobs is searching for her brother who is a baby who was kidnapped by Jared because apparently if some chick in high school yells out, "I wish my brother was never born" in some self-pitying moment, he comes and steals the kid away, and then he sings this song while they're in this room full of upside down and sideways staircases, and there's this gnome and I think he's in love with Jennifer Whatsherface With The Boobs. And then there's this scene where she's talking to doors and one of them lies and one of them is honest, but I really didn't get that part. Then there's this kick ass chihuahua who rides on a sheep dog and he's like a knight and he talks this fly game. I love that animal thing.

So yeah, Bowie would be a classic just for making Labrynth alone, never mind his music which all kicks ass.

Ally, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I was first introduced to Bowie when he was in his "Dancin in teh Streets" period. But still I like d him as eighties blonde hair explosion king. Then I got Changes collection and I realised what he was really all about. THen for like 5 years I was way too into him. I bought EVERYTHING he ever made. WHat I like most about him is he likes to acknowlege the fact that no matter how much you try to come across as your sel f in pre -internet media, you are s till just a character. My favourtie albums by him r Ashes to Ashes or Station to Station, although I feel closest to Lodger.

-- Mike Hanley, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Sir Didymus. The little dog-like critter who rode around on the big fluffy dog (called Ambrosius, I believe) was called Sir Didymus. Even though the film's ridiculous, I have a certain fondness for it. And, doh - Kate's revealed I own it...!

Paul Strange, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Sir Didymus! Yes! I love that thing. He kicked some major ass, cos he was nuts.

Ally, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Gosh, Ally, now you're even agreeing with my *boyfriend*! Have we merged? Help, mommy, I'm scared.

masonic boom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Classic for: Labyrinth, the synths at the end of 'Ashes To Ashes', being a loon. Dud for: 'Dancing In The Streets'.

DG, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I like your boyfriend better than mine, because he says things like "Sir Didymus kicked ass" as opposed to "The Bee Gees kicked ass". Does he have a clone I can borrow?

What's the name of the song at the end of Labrinyth (yes, I realize that's the third different spelling of that word I've put forth so far)?

Ally, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

NO!!! Sharing toenail varnish and Manics-spanking robots is one thing, but I draw the line at Paul! Besides, think of all the rubbish Hefner and Belle and Sebastian you'd have to put up with. ;-)

masonic boom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Hey! Leave Hefner and Belle and Sebastian alone! :)

Anyway... The track at the end was called 'As The World Falls Down', if I remember correctly, and it was actually rather good. One of the two good tracks in the film. 'Underground' was also good.

Sadly, though, all the good tracks were completely negated by 'Magic Dance'. Sample lyrics: 'Tell me about the babe/ What babe/ The babe that cast the spell/ What spell/ Power of voodoo/ Who do?/ You do/ Now tell me about the babe...' Oh dear.

Paul Strange, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I think it's telling that "As the World Falls Down" was the only track from that album to appear on the remastered _Tonight_ CD. (Yes, I am a sad fan, especially for owning *that* album -- do not play the version of "God Only Knows" to anyone, unless you're Ally and want to torment Fred with its wretchedness.)

And to clear a certain assertion back up there up, I do own _The Dark Crystal_ on DVD, sure, but not _Labyrinth_. Not yet, anyway. ;-)

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

That IS the song I was asking about, Dance Magic. It's so ridiculously hilarious. I mean, what was he thinking? I want a copy of that song, but not badly enough to go and buy the CD.

Ally, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

There was also that "Fire Dance" song. HM.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

YES! THat GOd Only KNows version! WHAT!?! what was he fuckin g thinking or drinking? Jesus christ! I was aghast!

-- Mike Hanley, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

OK, it is now 2 hours later. We have now watched the film. (yes, we are sad.) It is, as described, absolutely terrible. Not EVEN a patch on the Dark Crystal. David Bowie's hair is, as advertised, the greatest crime against coiffery since, well... I was going to say Andrew Eldritch, but I think Bowie's hair is worse.

HOWEVER... I do have to say that that Fire Dance song is the *BEST* track that Olivia Tremor Control never recorded. Call Elephant 6 now!!!!

masonic boom, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

No! Don't say that! My friend, the Divine LC, will track you down and quite probably kill you for saying Labyrinth is rubbish. How can it be? Its got that bizarre knight bloke, the fire things that swap body parts and a Brummie snail (if I remember correctly)! But it isn't as good as Transformers The Movie - not Bowie related obviously, but a kid's film from the same year (I think).

DG, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Really?? Damn girl, I always held a special placein my heart for Labrynth. Are you sure you didnt like it? I think it brilliant. Better than any thing that fucker Felinni ever did.

Mike Hanley, Wednesday, 6 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I love stuff like Ziggy, Aladdin Sane, Low, Hunky Dory, Outside (I absolutely adore this album!). Hell, I even enjoy the 1st Tin Machine album...

Kodanshi, Thursday, 7 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

Oh God, I really like Dance Magic Dance, but I think only the chorus, and it does stem from childhood when I thought the Labyrinth was the greatest film ever made, specifically cause of all the cool old town around the castle sets. the scene that used to annoy me though, was the one where the girl walks into the (i think) rubbish dump place and then goes to a nightmare fairytale masked ball. I saw it again last year and it still scared me shitless!

Bill

Bill, Friday, 8 June 2001 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

I had a six-month Bowie phase in the second year at uni. I used to do impressions of him. T'was great. These days I just like him.

Nick Southall (Nick Southall), Saturday, 21 June 2003 12:18 (eighteen years ago) link

The only thing I'd ever buy of his now would be that Rykodisc double CD singles comp (I've already got Station thru Scary Monsters), but I'll always be willing to LISTEN to insanities like this "YOUR MIND. BLOW IT!" song referenced above. He's as good as bad gets or as bad as good gets depending on your tastes. Duran Duran is SO his fault, which means a lot of people here are David Bowie's fault.

Anthony Miccio (Anthony Miccio), Saturday, 21 June 2003 16:21 (eighteen years ago) link

I always thought he blew it when he decided that 1983's dress code was going be "International Pop Sensation," having pretty much run through everything else from heavy mental through astute artistic wonkery. Of course, he nailed the role, leaving him with nowhere to go but sideways for the next 20 years.

PS New new digital revamp of "Ziggy: The Motion Picture" is Mick Ronson's finest hour and a half.

Chris Clark (Chris Clark), Sunday, 22 June 2003 13:51 (eighteen years ago) link

TS: referring to DB circa 1983 as "blonde hair explosion king" vs. "International Pop Sensation"!

Tad (llamasfur), Friday, 27 June 2003 06:54 (eighteen years ago) link

heh, alot of people here are David Bowie's fault

James Blount (James Blount), Friday, 27 June 2003 07:02 (eighteen years ago) link

five years pass...

Let's talk about Bowie. I want to talk about Bowie. Is the "David Live" album any good?

Bimble Is Still More Goth Than You, Monday, 28 July 2008 00:41 (thirteen years ago) link

Not very, no.

J0hn D., Monday, 28 July 2008 00:43 (thirteen years ago) link

Sorry to sound all "rockist," but "over-rated or justifiably hated," without a "good-to-great" option? Seems wrong.

Daniel, Esq., Monday, 28 July 2008 00:52 (thirteen years ago) link

He's overrated by those who think he can sing, sure.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Monday, 28 July 2008 01:45 (thirteen years ago) link

'stage' is the live album to get. adrian belew!

haitch, Monday, 28 July 2008 01:58 (thirteen years ago) link

belew 'em all off the stage, didn't he

goole, Monday, 28 July 2008 03:14 (thirteen years ago) link

last interesting round of ilm bowie chat was here:

BOWIE VS STEELY

goole, Monday, 28 July 2008 03:15 (thirteen years ago) link

Stage is rather bad. Live, Bowie is best seen rather than heard.

Owen Pallett, Monday, 28 July 2008 08:32 (thirteen years ago) link

That is to say, it works better with the visuals. There was an amazing '77 concert at Muzikladen on the Youtube a while ago, but it got taken down once Matrixsynth picked up on it

Owen Pallett, Monday, 28 July 2008 08:36 (thirteen years ago) link

I really like David Live. The total inhumanity and coldness of the record appeals to me and is ideal for him. In a way it's his Metal Machine Music if we're talking depersonalisation. It's as if he's stranded on Mars and all his songs are in a lay-by in Stanmore.

Dingbod Kesterson, Monday, 28 July 2008 08:44 (thirteen years ago) link

Let's talk about Bowie. I want to talk about Bowie. Is the "David Live" album any good?

eh it's alright. Stage is ten times better.

stephen, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 03:03 (thirteen years ago) link

is that really great version of "Blackout" on Stage? Blackout Live is Bowie POV for sure

Is it safe to say that David Bowie is one of those artists with NO DISCERNABLE INDIVIDUAL SONGWRITING STYLE, from album to album? I don't know if this means he's very diverse, or just a corporate whore.

In my mind, I'd say, there's a very tangible sense of Bowiesque songwriting.. All of his songs have a sort of simplicity and, excluding his more abstract material, melodic verve. I'd say it's harder to reconcile "TV EYE" and "Candy" being written by the same man than it is "The Man Who Sold the World" and "Ashes to Ashes." I think Bowie's lyrical style is a dead giveaway, too. Did anyone ever notice that "Fantastic Voyage" and "Boys Keep Swinging" are the exact same chords and song structure with different songs on top? I always thought that was a remarkable feat of songwriting, and one he pulled off ina very unique way.

people explosion, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 04:35 (thirteen years ago) link

Also Red Money/Sister Midnight

Niles Caulder, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 05:55 (thirteen years ago) link

one year passes...

Thought I saw an ad for a new album today but it turns out it's just a release of that VH1 thing he did around when hours... came out. I guess he's just going to relax and do random backing vocals from here on in or something.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 3 August 2009 18:44 (twelve years ago) link

The thought of someone hating David Bowie DOES NOT COMPUTE.

My mom told me a little bit ago the 'Ashes to Ashes' was playing on the hospital room TV while she was in labor & she was annoyed bcz my dad was paying attention to it and not her. I don't blame him!

a muttering inbred (called) (not named) (Abbott), Monday, 3 August 2009 18:53 (twelve years ago) link

While she was in labor...WITH ME!!!

a muttering inbred (called) (not named) (Abbott), Monday, 3 August 2009 19:00 (twelve years ago) link

I miss his original choppers, tho.

a muttering inbred (called) (not named) (Abbott), Monday, 3 August 2009 19:01 (twelve years ago) link

More specifically: http://areaology.com/area.html

a muttering inbred (called) (not named) (Abbott), Monday, 3 August 2009 19:02 (twelve years ago) link

I listened to Reality for the first time in ages. A very good record – a lesser Lodger, of which it's a thematic and aura cousin.

Heric E. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 3 August 2009 19:04 (twelve years ago) link

(xxxpost)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtrjZRQ8TzU

grocery groin (snoball), Monday, 3 August 2009 19:07 (twelve years ago) link

While she was in labor...WITH ME!!!

"Abbott to Abbott..."

Ned Raggett, Monday, 3 August 2009 19:15 (twelve years ago) link

"My mama said to get me born
She had to tell Dad to stop being torn..."

Ned Raggett, Monday, 3 August 2009 19:16 (twelve years ago) link

<3

a muttering inbred (called) (not named) (Abbott), Monday, 3 August 2009 21:32 (twelve years ago) link

reality is alright, I liked it a lot at first, then really hated it, now I'm back to thinking "eh". it's no heathen. I hope that when he gets around to doing a new album it's at least that good.

akm, Monday, 3 August 2009 22:26 (twelve years ago) link

Heathen had too many ballads. Then again, maybe that's all he can write and sing now.

Anatomy of a Morbius (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 3 August 2009 22:27 (twelve years ago) link

three weeks pass...

As found/shared by Tom E. on Twitter -- a new blog dedicated to reviewing Bowie's output song by song (currently in late 1966):

http://bowiesongs.wordpress.com/

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 29 August 2009 16:11 (twelve years ago) link

good use of "cat people" in the new tarantino movie. couldn't tell what song it was at first

kamerad, Saturday, 29 August 2009 17:50 (twelve years ago) link

two years pass...

Just out for a stroll.

https://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/418843_253659648083931_1472298826_n.jpg

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:10 (nine years ago) link

Something tells me he knows he's being photographed.

Sick Mouthy (Scik Mouthy), Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:12 (nine years ago) link

You don't say.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:17 (nine years ago) link

Something tells me he's trying to look like an "American".

collardio gelatinous, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:18 (nine years ago) link

a young one at that.

collardio gelatinous, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:18 (nine years ago) link

RETURN OF THE THIN WHITE DAD

da croupier, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:19 (nine years ago) link

throwing darts in photog's eyes

collardio gelatinous, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:20 (nine years ago) link

"You know, before I go to the reviews section to find out what exciting acts are coming up from the underground...let's just check where Uncut put me on this 100 icons thing."

da croupier, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:21 (nine years ago) link

might as well, right?

collardio gelatinous, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:22 (nine years ago) link

The Top Ten
1. Dylan, Bob – Highway 61 Revisited
2. Presley, Elvis – Heartbreak Hotel [7”]
3. Beatles – She Loves You [7”]
4. Rolling Stones – (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction [7”]
5. A Clockwork Orange (film)
6. Godfather / Godfather Part 2 (films)
7. Bowie, David – Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust & the Spiders from Mars
8. Taxi Driver (film)
9. Sex Pistols – Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the…
10. Prisoner [TV series]

He's reasonable enough that I bet his only quibble with the six above him is A Clockwork Orange

da croupier, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:25 (nine years ago) link

http://images.thegauntlet.com/pics/manson-fuck.jpg

Hi, I'm Marilyn Manson, please don't take my picture! (But please do, because I am Marilyn Manson, boo!)

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:26 (nine years ago) link

What the shit, get that out of here.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:26 (nine years ago) link

Looks like he and Jonathan Davis can go on the "Where's My Metabolism" tour.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:27 (nine years ago) link

What's he doing to that little kid's hand?

collardio gelatinous, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:30 (nine years ago) link

he tore the arm off at the socket

a regina spektor is haunting europe (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:31 (nine years ago) link

It's actually the prehensile tale of his trained pet devil pig.

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:32 (nine years ago) link

dude with camera filming while kid gets dismembered...

collardio gelatinous, Tuesday, 14 August 2012 18:35 (nine years ago) link


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