Posts Tagged ‘David Bowie’

Buy Online David Bowie - Dallas 1978: Isolar II World Tour Yellow

David Bowie, “Live from the Dallas Convention Center, TX” on 10th April 1978.

Escaping his drug-fuelled life in Los Angeles at the end of 1976, David Bowie took up residence in Berlin, and between 1977 and 1979 he kicked his coke habit, rediscovered his love of painting, and in so doing, reinvigorated his musical career. During this period he released three albums known to Bowie aficionados as the Berlin Trilogy, comprising of the albums Low (1977), Heroes (1977), and Lodger (1979).

David Bowie’s Isolar II World Tour in 1978 introduced the world to the first two of these albums – Low and Heroes – and took him to 14 countries. For the first time since starting out as Davy Jones in the sixties, Bowie was Bowie, not Ziggy, not Halloween Jack, nor the sinister and skeletal Thin White Duke. This was Bowie the suffering, introspective artist.

This concert, recorded by NPR and broadcast live, features Bowie’s Dallas Convention Center gig in Texas in the opening leg of the Isolar II World Tour.

• Legendary performance from the Dallas Convention Center
• Includes the entire National Public Radio broadcast.
• Digitally remastered for greatly enhanced sound quality

Parlophone Records will issue what they are calling a ‘companion piece’ to Metrobolist, last year’s Tony Visconti remix of David Bowie‘s 1970 album “The Man Who Sold The World”. This new collection is a two-CD set called “The Width of a Circle” and features a combination of Ryko-era bonus tracks, BBC live recordings and new mixes, all from 1970.

The first CD features 14 tracks performed by David Bowie and The Tony Visconti Trio (a.k.a. The Hype) for John Peel’s “The Sunday Show” in February 1970 (the label are claiming that six of these are unreleased) while the second disc is very much an ‘odds and sods’ collection of material. It includes some bonus material first heard on CD back in 1989/1990 when Rykodisc began their Bowie reissue campaign.

Such tracks include 1970 single A-side ‘Holy Holy’, the single mix of ‘The Prettiest Star’ (although it’s included here in unreleased alternate mix form – “created for promotion in the US market”), both mono and stereo mixes of ‘London Bye Ta-Ta’ and the A and B-side mixes of ‘Memory of A Free Festival’.

In addition, this CD offers five tracks from a play (“The Looking Glass Murders aka Pierrot in Turquoise”) and five 2020 stereo mixes of some of the non-album material remixed by Tony Visconti. Four of those five are also available on a special 10-inch single (also called The Width of a Circle).

Official lyric video for David Bowie’s ‘Holy Holy’ (2020 Mix). Remixed by Tony Visconti and part of ‘The Man Who Sold The World’ companion album ‘The Width of a Circle’

Last month saw the 50th anniversary of the original U.K. release of The Man Who Sold The WorldDavid Bowie’s landmark entry into the 1970s. The album began the collaboration with guitarist Mick Ronson that would continue with such classics as Hunky Dory, Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Sane. The 2020 re-release of The Man Who Sold The World restored the album’s intended title Metrobolist, while featuring a new mix by original producer Tony Visconti. Taking its name from the album’s opening track, which was named after a painting by Bowie’s friend George Underwood, the new two-CD set The Width Of A Circle acts as a complementary piece to that album. Its 21 tracks feature non-album singles, a BBC In Concert session, music for a TV play and further Visconti remixes wrapping up David’s recordings from 1970 and revealing the first sonic steps toward Hunky Dory.

The two-CD set of The Width of a Circle is presented as one of those DVD-sized, hardcover booksets – a format quite likes even if we can’t recall any David Bowie product being issued in this style before. The book contains 104 pages of content.

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Two absolute essentials from the Godfather and they’re both on coloured vinyl! Every collection needs these essential collaborations. Iggy Pop’s debut solo album, “The Idiot,” marked a radical departure from the incendiary, guitar-based proto-punk of his former band, The Stooges. First released on March 18th, 1977, it was written and recorded in collaboration with David Bowie, and its electronic veneer and melancholic atmosphere had much in common with Low, “Heroes” and Lodger, the three Bowie albums widely referred to as his “Berlin Trilogy.”

It’s been widely documented that Bowie played a vital role in Pop’s artistic rebirth, not just through shaping The Idiot, but also in helping him get his life back on track during the mid-70s. Indeed, when The Stooges split in disarray after 1973’s Raw Power, Iggy struggled with personal issues, even spending time in a Californian mental institution. Bowie, though, stuck by his friend, later taking Pop along as his companion on his extensive Isolar – 1976 Tour, in support of the Station To Station album.

Following the tour, in July 1976, Bowie and Pop holed up in Château d’Hérouville, the same French location where Bowie recorded his covers album, Pin Ups, in 1973 and would soon record much of Low. Bowie and Pop then set about putting together many of the songs which would feature on The Idiot. The sessions were loose and ad hoc in design, and the two musicians were augmented by bassist Laurent Thibault and drummer Michel Santangeli, who added to rough tracks already taped by Bowie.

During these initial sessions, Thibault supplied Bowie and Pop with a tape loop of industrial noise, which laid the foundation for The Idiot’s remarkable closing track, “Mass Production.” According to Paul Trynka’s Iggy Pop biography, Open Up And Bleed, Bowie was “like a child transfixed by a train set” when he heard the tape, which was spliced together in sections and went on to supply the ominous, droning backdrop for the song. Its oppressive atmosphere was perfectly matched by Pop’s numbed-out lyric, which was inspired by his memories of watching a machine press at Ford Motors’ River Rouge Plant in Dearborn, Michigan.

Iggy Pop later recalled conversations with Bowie “about how much I admired the beauty of the American industrial culture that was rotting away where I grew up,” according to Joe Ambrose in Gimme Danger: The Story Of Iggy Pop. “Like the beautiful smokestacks and factories… whole cities devoted to factories!”

During the Château sessions, Bowie and Pop worked up two future classics, “China Girl” and “Nightclubbing.” The former reflected upon Pop’s relationship with his Asian girlfriend Keulan Nguyen, and Bowie would later re-record it for his multi-platinum 1983 album, Let’s Dance.

“There’s a beautiful obligata, romantic melody at the end… it’s echoed by those sort of gypsy guitars, if you will,” Pop said in a 2019 interview with Sirius XM. “And that [melody] David wrote. I thought it was really lovely.”

“Nightclubbing,” meanwhile, sprang from an incident during downtime at the Château after The Idiot’s initial sessions wound down. Reputedly inspired by some cheap Halloween masks and an old-time melody Bowie began playing on the studio piano, the tune inspired Pop to write a lyric “mostly based on my experiences tagging along to the discos of Europe” with Bowie, in little more than 20 minutes.

The memorable, loping beat for this haunting song – which has since been covered by Grace Jones and The Human League, as well as featuring in the Trainspotting soundtrack – came to fruition out of necessity, simply because there was no one around to play drums that day.

“The only thing left to augment it in the room was a little Roland drum machine,” Pop said in 2019. “[Bowie] said, ‘I can’t put out a song with something like that as a drum track,’ so I said, ‘No, but I can,’ and he got that. So we did it with that and that beat is sampled in a lot of very successful hip-hop records now.”

Additional sessions for The Idiot moved onto Munich’s Musicland Studios and to Berlin’s Hansa Studio 1, where excellent tracks such as the Neu!-esque “Funtime,” the pulsing electro-pop of “Sister Midnight” and Pop’s hypnotic paean to The Stooges, “Dum Dum Boys,” were finished off with overdubs from Bowie’s regular rhythm section of Carlos Alomar, Dennis Davis, and George Murray. Producer Tony Visconti then achieved a final mix at Hansa and the album was issued with a cover photograph of Iggy, inspired by German painter Erich Heckel’s Roquairol.

The Idiot effectively resurrected Iggy Pop’s career. giving Pop the momentum to follow through with the abrasive, guitar-streaked Lust For Life later in 1977.

The album’s reputation has since grown exponentially. Though it was greeted by relatively modest reviews in 1977, Pop biographer Paul Trynka has asserted that The Idiot “prefigured the soul of post-punk,” and the record’s futuristic soundscapes are still being absorbed by popular culture today. The album has since been cited as a touchstone by influential artists ranging from Depeche Mode and R.E.M. to Joy Division and Nine Inch Nails, though Siouxsie Sioux perhaps put it best when she said The Idiot provided a “re-affirmation that our suspicions were true: the man is a genius.”


“Lived all our best times…” Some of you have successfully second-guessed Brilliant Live Adventures Number 5 edition, on account of it already having been released for streaming last year. The news is that it will be available for pre-order this coming Friday, 26th February, with a release date of 12th March on CD and double vinyl.

‘SOMETHING IN THE AIR (LIVE PARIS 99)’ The Fifth Release in the ‘BRILLIANT LIVE ADVENTURES’ Series of six single pressings of Live albums from the 1990s Vinyl, CD and Limited edition boxed sets to complete sets available exclusively via the The DAVID BOWIE OFFICIAL STORE & WARNER MUSIC GROUP’S DIG! STORE

On the 24th February 2021 London Parlophone Records is proud to announce the newest instalment of DAVID BOWIE ‘BRILLIANT LIVE ADVENTURES’, a series of six live albums from various 1990s era Bowie performances being released on vinyl and CD as limited one run only pressings. The albums and limited-edition boxes for both vinyl and CD to house the full collection will be available only via the David Bowie official store and Warner Music Group’s Dig! store.

The fifth in the series, out 12th March on CD and double vinyl, is “Something In The Air” (Live in Paris 99) a 15-track live album, featuring 12 previously unreleased recordings and three B-sides of singles from the ‘hours…’ album. The day of the show was a momentous one for Bowie, as that afternoon he was awarded the Commandeurs of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, the highest artistic honour that France can bestow.

The Elysée Montmartre performance was one of only seven full shows promoting the ‘hours…’ album. For this special limited run of gigs Bowie dug deep into his back catalogue making these shows particularly memorable. Standout tracks include ‘Can’t Help Thinking About Me’ first released in 1966 and not performed live in over 30 years, ‘Word On A Wing’ from Station To Station reinstated into the set after a 23-year absence, ‘Drive-In Saturday’ performed for the first time since 1974, and ‘hours…’ track ‘Something In The Air’ in its first live performance.

“Something In The Air” (Live in Paris 99) was recorded live at the Elysée Montmartre on 14th October 1999. It was mixed by Mark Plati, and features Bowie backed by Page Hamilton – guitar, Gail Ann Dorsey – bass, vocals, Mark Plati – guitar, Sterling Campbell – drums, Mike Garson – piano, keyboards, synthesisers and Emm Gryner and Holly Palmer – backing vocals.

To Be Released ON CD AND 2xLP 12th March.

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The fourth album in the David Bowie ‘Brilliant Live Adventures (1995-1999)’ series will be released in February, “Look At The Moon! (Live Phoenix Festival 97)” will be released on 2CD and 3LP formats on 12th February on Parlophone. The record comes on black vinyl, and there are also new “Look At The Moon! official T-shirts available, all of which can be bought separately or as bundles.

Recorded Live at The Phoenix Festival, Long Marston, England on 20th July, 1997, “Look At The Moon!” features such previously unreleased rarities as a cover of Laurie Anderson’s O Superman, which the band had also played at their secret show as ‘The Tao Jones Index’ at the festival the previous day. Other covers include Under Pressure, which Bowie famously recorded with Queen, and a version of The Velvet Underground’s White Light/White Heat.

The recording features David Bowie on vocals, guitar and saxophone; Zachary Alford on drums; Gail Ann Dorsey on bass, keyboards, vocals and lead vocals on O Superman; Reeves Gabrels on guitars, synths and vocals, and Mike Garson on piano, synths and keyboards. Phoenix Festival, which was set up by John Vincent Power in 1993, was held at Long Marston Airfield near Stratford-upon-Avon. David Bowie played the Sunday night headliner slot of the 1997 festival, coming on after Orbital and Texas, on the 20th July.

The show saw Bowie play a mix of hits from across his back catalogue, as well as songs from Earthling, which he had released on 3rd February that year and which he was in the process of touring. “Look At The Moon! (Live Phoenix Festival 97)” is the fourth installment in the series of six live albums from the 90s which are being released on vinyl and CD in limited, one-run-only pressings.

There are also special, limited edition boxes for both the vinyl and CDs, allowing fans to house the full collection. The albums and boxes will only be available from the David Bowie official store and via the Dig! store. 

David Bowie’s ‘LOOK AT THE MOON! (Live Phoenix Festival 97)’ Reissued

Is it any wonder? (CD + 12" E.P.)

“Is it Any Wonder?” is a six-track EP by David Bowie that was released in early 2020. It is composed mostly of older Bowie songs that Bowie re-recorded during his “Earthling” (1997) recording sessions and Earthling Tour rehearsals in early 1997.


‘Baby Universal’ was initially recorded by Tin Machine for Tin Machine II and was regularly performed on Bowie’s “Outside” Summer Festivals Tour in 1996. The version now being released as ’Baby Universal ’97’ was originally re-recorded for the Earthling album however it was ultimately removed from the final album master, but David was very fond of this version and before the track was dropped was quoted as saying, “I thought ‘Baby Universal’ was a really good song and I don’t think it got heard. I didn’t really want that to happen to it, so I put it on this album… I think this version is very good.”


‘Fun (Clownboy Mix)’  started out life as a modern revamp of the Bowie classic ‘Fame’ to be performed under the name ‘Is It Any Wonder?’ during David’s ‘club set’ on the Earthling tour.

The basic backing and sequencer tracks were worked at the Factory in Dublin docklands during the pre-tour rehearsals in early 1997. A live version of ‘Fame’ (‘Is It Any Wonder?’) was recorded at the Amsterdam Paradiso on 10th June, 1997, was further worked on by Mark Plati and Reeves Gabrels at Looking Glass Studios in New York and mixed at Sony Music Studios in New York in February 1998.  Referenced in interviews by Reeves as ‘Funhouse’, the song further developed lyrically and musically and, by the time Danny Saber created the Clownboy mix in May 1998, it was a completely new piece of work written by David and Reeves and featuring no elements of ‘Fame’. The Clownboy mix has previously only appeared on a BowieNet subscriber exclusive CD-ROM in 1998 and on Virgin Records in-house CDR’s along with four other Clownboy mix variants.

STAY ’97

‘Stay’ originally appeared on the ’Station To Station’ album in 1976 and was released as a single in the US in August of that year. The previously unreleased 1997 re-recording of ‘Stay’ began at The Factory in the Dublin Docklands during the pre-Earthling tour rehearsals while David, Mark Plati and Reeves Gabrels were preparing the backing/sequencer tracks before the rest of the band arrived, and the rehearsals started in earnest. David wanted to ‘update’ some of his live show staples so they would sit well sonically with the Outside/Earthling material. The recording was completed later, potentially for use as a ‘B-side’, and mixed at Right Track Recording Studios, New York in May/June 1997.


‘I Can’t Read’ originally appeared on Tin Machine’s eponymous debut album in 1989, and was a staple in the band’s live set.  In the autumn of 1996, during the mixing stages for Earthling, David re-recorded the track – which, at one stage, appeared on a mastered version of the album. ‘I Can’t’ Read ‘97’, was David’s preferred solo version, it was ultimately cut from Earthling and replaced at the last minute with ‘The Last Thing You Should Do’.


The unreleased semi instrumental ’Nut’s’ was jointly written by David, Reeves Gabrels and Mark Plati. It was recorded during the final Earthling sessions in November 1996, the same session during which ‘The Last Thing You Should Do’ was written and recorded. Both songs were being recorded as bonus tracks but then, at the last minute David swapped out ‘I Can’t Read’ with ‘The Last Thing You Should Do’. However, ’Nut’s has remained unreleased until now.


A live recording was taken by Bowie collaborator Brian Eno into Westside Studios in London on 30th October, 1995, and reshaped with some overdubs and mixing. Eno wrote about the mix in his diaries saying: “I added some backing vocals and a sonar blip and sculpted the piece a little so that there was more contour to it”. It was previously released as a double A-side on a green vinyl 7” single and as part of a CD single in various territories with the Outside version of ‘Strangers When We Meet’ in 1995, this version is based on the fairly radical trip-hop reworking of the song as performed on the Outside World Tour.



“Station to Station” is an odd album for me, in that I feel I would probably have a higher opinion of it than I do were it not for the album that immediately preceded it. It’s not that I prefer “Young Americans”, far from it, but I feel that if Bowie had been able to make a smooth transition from the Glam-flecked dystopia of Diamond Dogs to the disconnection of Station to Station, I may have a far higher opinion of Bowie’s late 70s work.

As it is, Station to Station is a vast improvement on the shiny and disposable Young Americans, but there’s nothing on it to lift it to the level of anything from his early 70s hot-streak. That said Station to Station does have its moments, none more so than its epic title track, which brilliantly re-establishes Bowie as an artist of genuine depth after his previous stumble from greatness. “Golden Years” follows up the title track with a sprits of the type of funk soul that Bowie had dabbled with previously, but was an enjoyable single nonetheless.

The thing about Station to Station though is that while it gave notice that Bowie hadn’t totally lost his marbles, it also simultaneously marked the point where he traded ‘entertainment’ for ‘serious artistic statement’, and to me at least, became a lot less fun. That’s not to say that the albums from this era are without charm, but for me they suffer in comparison to his earlier work which managed to juggle rock, artistic statements, great song writing and brilliant entertainment. For me Bowie’s albums from Station to Station through to Lodger just took themselves to damn seriously.

Legend has it that David Bowie was so lost in a vortex of cocaine and ego during the making of this record to such a degree that he now can’t remember anything about its creation at all. Typically though, in the midst of all this madness he created a masterpiece, and arguably his greatest album of all. With a hint of the funk of influence of ‘Young Americans’, yet filtered through a glacial European sensibility, it’s a genre-transcending tour-de-force of boundless scope and imperious swagger. Forty-one years on, this record still sounds like the future.

David Bowie’s masterpiece or not, “Station to Station”, was released this week in 1976, its creation fuelled by “astronomic” cocaine, peppers and milk, an Aryan zombie alter-ego, a mental breakdown with a Hollywood backdrop, the Kabbalah, and finally a desperate search for love and meaning amid profound spiritual confusion.

It’s also a sonic masterpiece on a level un-attempted before or since, having been variously described as the merger of “Lou Reed, disco and Dr. John,” “space funk,” “alien dance music” with “a wail and throb that won’t let up,” “a masterpiece of invention” and, according to long time Bowie collaborator Brian Eno (who was not involved with Station to Station but would produce his imminent Berlin trilogy), “one of the great records of all time.”

How David Bowie Arrived at the Addled Splendor of <i>Station to Station</i>

The title track kicks off the LP with the sound of a train shoving off—for about 75 seconds, part of an instrumental opening that’s longer than many songs. Then comes the entrance of “The Thin White Duke,” whom Bowie described to Crawdaddy magazine as “The most scary of the lot [of characters he created] because he was the result of all those years of putting characters together. He was an ogre for me. I hadn’t seen England for a few years and when I got back there I found that I’d taken back to England with me a character who was the epitome of everything that it looked like could be happening to England. I saw the National Front and it was obvious to me: There was a Nazi Party in England. Whether or not it was a good thing that I did, I don’t know. I believe the best way to fight an evil force is to caricature it.”

Somehow the opening track that goes on for over 10 minutes (and really is three songs in one) doesn’t seem remotely self-indulgent. In fact, the most thrilling thing about the song and the album generally is that it’s so close to completely falling apart, yet not only holds together but soars. After the prog-rock(ish) title track, the album recaptures the white soul of Bowie’s previous record, Young Americans, with “Golden Years” (which Bowie said he offered to Elvis Presley), then rocks in full guitar-hero fury with “Stay.” Here’s a live version of “Stay” from that same 1976 show at the Nassau Coliseum in New York.

Bowie deconstructs and then reconstructs a pop masterpiece in “TVC 15,” and croons with a passion so pronounced it almost seems unreal—and maybe that’s what makes “The Thin White Duke” most frightening—on both “Word on a Wing” and “Wild Is the Wind.” Every track is enthralling.

Half a decade after writing himself into fame with the intergalactic rock messiah Ziggy Stardust, David Bowie was in danger of crash-landing – just like Thomas Jerome Newton, the extraterrestrial he had assumed the role of throughout August 1975. Though there’s some debate about this, Station to Station was reportedly a failed soundtrack for 1976’s The Man Who Fell To Earth, Bowie’s first big-screen credit. That would make it the second rock masterpiece to hold that distinction, as The Who’s Who’s Next was an abandoned soundtrack for a planned Peter Townshend film (Lifehouse) that seemed to drive Townshend to the edge of insanity, to the point where his bandmates could no longer even follow what he was trying to say.

In deference to the demands of the movie, resolved to lead a clean life, when he returned to Los Angeles, preparing to work on what would become his new album, “Station To Station”, Bowie was at a spiritual, psychological and artistic crossroads that would eventually lead to one of his greatest albums

According to Crawdaddy’s Timothy White writing 40 years ago, “Bowie shuttled from house to house around the Hollywood area, sometimes staying with onetime Deep Purple bassist Glenn Hughes and later moving in with his next (ill-fated) choice for a ‘business adviser,’ Michael Lippman, before leaving for a three-month stay in New Mexico to star in Nic Roeg’s uneven sci-fi film, ‘The Man Who Fell to Earth.’ Reappearing shortly thereafter at Cherokee Studios in Hollywood to record, Bowie was, to quote Lippman, ‘in a very weak mental state.’”

Reportage at the time had Bowie seeing ghosts, worrying about witches stealing his semen and living in fear of rock’s reigning master of black magic, Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page. “I had this more-than-passing interest in Egyptology, mysticism, the Kabbalah, all this stuff that is inherently misleading in life,” Bowie recalled in 1983. Black magic, Aleister Crowley’s late-19th-century collection of occultist poetry, White Stains, and the Stations Of The Cross also filled his head. Pushing himself to extremes, Bowie kept increasingly long hours (“There’s things that you have to do to stay up that long,” he later acknowledged) that would see him enter a “hallucinogenic state” in which he envisioned “this bizarre nihilistic fantasy world of oncoming doom, mythological characters and imminent totalitarianism”, he reported seeing a body fall past his apartment window, so had taken to living with the blinds drawn, lighting black candles and scrawling chalk symbols around the place, in the hopes of warding off evil spirits.

As sessions for “Station To Station” unfolded, however, it became clear that Bowie was pursuing an entirely different vision, and was spending more time than ever in the studio trying to capture it.

But in the studio, Bowie was grounded by a band that was perhaps the best he ever assembled: Carlos Alomar and Earl Slick on guitars, Roy Bittan of E Street Band fame on piano, plus long time rhythm section Dennis Davis on drums and George Murray on bass. Earl Slick was key, with Bowie later saying to Kurt Loder as part of the Sound + Vision boxed set, “I got some quite extraordinary things out of Earl Slick. I think it captured his imagination to make noises on guitar, and textures, rather than playing the right notes.”

More recently, Slick said, “It was a very important record artistically because it was the first time somebody took pop songs and twisted the hell out of them but didn’t lose the essence of the song. The only person who was really doing ‘out there’ shit at the time was Zappa, and that was wonderful but it was Zappa. This wasn’t avant-garde, this was pop stuff and nobody had approached a record like that.”

You’ve got play around with it or it gets to be a dreadful bore.” Pulling apart the notions of conventional song writing, Bowie would bring formative ideas to the core group of Alomar, Murray and Davis in the studio, fashioning finished wholes out of an array of takes that turned these fragments inside out. “He had one or two songs written, but they were changed so drastically that you wouldn’t know them from the first time anyway,”

Bowie would later claim Station To Station was so “devoid of spirit” that “even the love songs are detached”, it contains two remarkable outpourings of emotion that are almost painful in their defencelessness. A “hymn” which Bowie also felt “sure… was a call for help”, Word On A Wing was written during The Man Who Fell To Earth shoot, and finds Bowie plainly seeking spiritual salvation amid “the darkest days of my life”. “It was the first time I’d seriously thought about Christ and God in any depth,” he revealed to the NME, adding that it “was a protection. The passion on the song is genuine.” Closing the album, Wild Is The Wind – a cover of a 50s film tune which Bowie had discovered through Nina Simone’s 1966 recording – was similarly yearning. With a vocal nailed in one take, it marked yet another progression for Bowie, in terms of his abilities as a singer. Having long admired Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra, Wild Is The Wind proved he had the range and nuance to take his place alongside them as one of the all-time great vocalists.

Dramatically entering the song “throwing darts in lovers’ eyes”, the Duke, with his haughty demeanour, slicked-back auburn hair and monochrome clothing – white shirt, black slacks and waistcoat – was, in Bowie’s estimation, a “nasty character, indeed”. But he also pointed the way to his creator’s eventual rescue from LA. Acknowledging the new musical influences Bowie was gravitating towards, the Duke, Bowie never went back to either the Thin White Duke or that sound again. No one did. Maybe it was the product of so many destructive forces that he couldn’t revisit. As for the rest, it’s just too perfect and fully realized for anyone else to dare pick up.

In the case of Bowie’s relocation to Europe, one of those moves would be literal, and would find him laying the blueprint for the future of music, starting with the first album in his “Berlin Trilogy”, 1977’s Low. However, a deep psychological change had also taken place. Two decades after Station To Station’s release, Bowie reflected on how he had been “lucky enough to know somewhere within me that I was really killing myself, and that I had to do something drastic to pull myself out of that”.


Image may contain: 2 people, people on stage

Parlophone Records have announced the third in a series of six very special David Bowie live releases from the 90s that will be released on CD and vinyl over the coming months.

The suitably-titled “LIVEANDWELL.COM” (yes, it’s intentionally-capitalised) references the Thin White Duke’s some might say, soothsayer-like obsession with the quaint old concept of “the information superhighway.” Previously released in 2000 in limited quantities to BowieNet subscribers, the LP has been expanded to include two bonus tracks – “Pallas Athena” and “V-2 Schneider” – to help stretch it across four sides.

The set was recorded in New York, Amsterdam and Rio De Janeiro during the 1997 Earthling tour. Its first 10 tracks have until now been physically available only on the BowieNet release, while the two bonus tracks were released as a 12” single under the name The Tao Jones Index (the alias Bowie and his band employed to play an unannounced set in the dance tent at the Phoenix Festival in England in 1997).

The new, limited edition vinyl edition of LIVEANDWELL.COM comes in newly-designed artwork featuring a cover shot of Bowie taken by Scarlet Page during rehearsals for the June 1997 London Hanover Grand shows. The album marks the third of six releases that will comprise the “Brilliant Live Adventures” set, with the first two releases being “David Bowie Ouvrez Le Chien (Live Dallas 95)”, and “No Trendy Réchauffé (Live Birmingham 95)”.

Produced by David Bowie, co-produced by Reeves Gabrels and Mark Plati, the musicians featured include Zachary Alford (drums), Gail Ann Dorsey (bass, vocals, keyboards), Reeves Gabrels (guitars, synthesisers, vocals) and Mike Garson (piano, keyboards, synthesisers).


Even beyond the grave, David Bowie continues to gift us new music. On January 8th, what would have been his 74th birthday, two previously unreleased covers will be made available to the public for the very first time. The new Bowie covers are going to be packaged as a limited-edition two-song 7-inch single from Rhino Records. A total of only 8147 copies will be up for grabs, 1000 of which will be cream coloured. Digital downloads and streaming versions are also promised.

The first is Bowie’s take on “Mother”, the 1970 track from John Lennon. This cover was originally recorded in 1998 with the Thin White Duke’s long-time producer Tony Visconti. It was supposed to appear on a Lennon tribute collection, but the release never came to fruition.

Meanwhile, the second offering is a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Tryin’ to Get to Heaven”, taken from his 1997 Grammy-winning album “Time Out of Mind”. Bowie also recorded his reimagining in 1998 while working on his live album that came out the following year.

David Bowie – vocals
Reeves Gabrels – guitars
Tony Visconti – bass, harmony vocals
Andy Newmark – drums
Jordan Ruddess – piano
Richard Barone – harmony vocals

david bowie 74th birthday single john lennon bob dylan David Bowies Unreleased Covers of John Lennon and Bob Dylan Will Finally Be Unearthed for 74th Birthday

David Bowie's Live Album Series Continues with 'No Trendy Réchauffé'

The second installment in the posthumous David Bowie live series, Brilliant Live Adventures, will capture a 1995 show in Birmingham, England, and arrive November 20th via Parlophone Records.

“No Trendy Réchauffé (Live Birmingham 95)” was recorded at Birmingham’s National Exhibition Centre on December 13th, 1995 as part of the Big Twix Mix Show Festival. While this marks the first full commercial release of the show, excerpts from it were filmed and aired by the BBC, while Bowie’s performances of “Moonage Daydream” and “Under Pressure” were included on the “Hallo Spaceboy” CD single.

The No Trendy Réchauffé setlist boasts rare live performances of “Jump They Say” and “Strangers When We Meet.” The live album will also include two versions of “Hallo Spaceboy,” the second of which was tied to a music video Bowie was set to release for the song at the time, but never did. The track was eventually remixed by the Pet Shop Boys for a single release and an alternative promotional video was made.

Last month, Parlophone Records announced Brilliant Live Adventures, a new series of releases from the late David Bowie collecting six rare and previously unreleased live albums from the 1990s to be released in limited-edition, one-time pressings on both CD and vinyl.  The first three albums have all been promised for release before Christmas, with the remaining trio due early in 2021.  Ouvrez Le Chien (Live Dallas ’95) was the first volume; today, the second has been announced.

“No Trendy Réchauffé (Live Birmingham ’95)” was filmed and recorded almost two months to the day after the Dallas show on Ouvrez Le Chien.  The title phrase translates to No Trendy Rehash, and indeed, Bowie was in spirited, original form that evening in Birmingham.  It was the final night in 1995 of the Outside Tour, and the opening night of the Big Twix Mix Show festival.  Bowie marked the occasions with rare performances of Black Tie White Noise‘s “Jump They Say” and Outside‘s “Strangers When We Meet,” and took the audience on an electrifying trip from past (“Moonage Daydream,” “Under Pressure,” “The Man Who Sold the World,” “Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)”) to present (“I Have Not Been to Oxford Town,” “The Motel,” “We Prick You,” “Hallo Spaceboy”).

Portions of the show were aired on the BBC, versions as heard here are previously unreleased, presented as exactly as they were performed in Birmingham.  The disc also features a second version of “Hallo Spaceboy,” filmed as “Spaceboy” for a potential music video.  

The concert features Bowie accompanied by Carlos Alomar on rhythm guitar, Reeves Gabrels on lead guitar and vocals, Gail Ann Dorsey on bass and vocals, Zachary Alford on drums, musical director Peter Schwartz on keyboards and synthesizers, George Simms on vocals, and Mike Garson on piano and keyboards.

No Trendy Réchauffé (Live Birmingham ’95) is exclusively available for pre-order now from David Bowie’s official webstore on both CD and vinyl.  The expected ship date is November 18th.  

David Bowie,No Trendy Réchauffé (Live Birmingham ’95)” (Parlophone, 2020)

The Brilliant Live Adventure series was announced back in October and will comprise six live albums recorded during the Nineties. The first, Ouvrez Le Chien, featured a Dallas, Texas, show from 1995 and was released at the end of October. One more album is expected to arrive before Christmas 2020, while the remaining three records will be released in early 2021.

Live Birmingham