Posts Tagged ‘David Bowie’
David Bowie makes a surprise, but very welcome return!
Having seemingly disappeared from the face of the earth for a good few years, David Bowie has done what he does best, surprised us all!
On the day of his 66th birthday he released his first new track for a decade and announced an album will follow in March. The single Where Are We Now? is a beautifully melancholic affair, wistful but still sounding like Bowie. The album The Next Day will follow in March…
You can watch the video for Where Are We Now? right here…
Mott The Hoople’s Ian Hunter reveals 20th studio album; When I’m President
Out on Proper Records September 4th
As leader of ‘70s British rock legends Mott the Hoople and as a hugely influential solo artist, Ian Hunter is widely revered as one of rock’n’roll’s most compelling performers and one of its most articulate songwriters.
On September 4, 2012, Hunter will release When I’m President (Proper Records), his 20th album of original songs, and the latest highlight in a storied career that’s produced immortal anthems like “All The Young Dudes,” “All the Way From Memphis,” “Once Bitten, Twice Shy” and “Cleveland Rocks.”
The new album’s 11 Hunter originals include such infectious, personally charged numbers as the wry, socially conscious title track, the gently introspective “Fatally Flawed” the bittersweet ballad “Black Tears,” the chugging rocker “Wild Bunch,” the swaggering “I Don’t Know What You Want” (which features a guest vocal by Hunter’s son Jesse) and the vivid, haunting “Ta Shunka Witco (Crazy Horse)”—all of which showcase the jagged immediacy of Hunter’s one-of-a-kind voice and the punchy authority of his longstanding all-star backup combo the Rant Band.
“The songs seem to be more upbeat this time round,” Hunter notes. “The last two albums were pretty political, just because I thought the Bush years were horrible, and thankfully that’s passed. But I don’t go looking for songs; I have to wait for them to come to me. I had a spurt there in the summer of 2011, and that grew into this album. I’d get up every day with something ringing in my head, so I’d try to catch it and get it down. Songwriting’s always been a mystery to me in that way. Now and again you’re nearer the sun, and you have to be ready to capture it.”
The qualities of musical depth and emotional honesty that distinguish When I’m President have been constants in Ian Hunter’s expansive body of work. Hunter was already a young veteran of London’s burgeoning rock scene when he joined Mott the Hoople in 1969, and recorded four iconoclastic albums with the quintet by the time it rode the glam-rock wave to international superstardom with the David Bowie-produced 1972 album All the Young Dudes and its Bowie-penned title hit. The band’s artistic and commercial success continued with 1973′s Mott and 1974′s The Hoople and Mott the Hoople Live, helping to set the stage for the rise of British punk and new wave before the group disbanded in 1974.
Hunter moved to New York and segued into a celebrated solo career with 1975′s Ian Hunter, quickly building a formidable body of solo releases that expanded upon the achievements of his former band.
Following 1983′s well-received All of the Good Ones Are Taken, Hunter took an extended hiatus that kept him out of the spotlight for much the next decade, until the 1993 death of his longtime friend and collaborator, guitarist Mick Ronson, jolted him back into musical action.
Like such acclaimed recent Hunter releases as Rant (2001), Shrunken Heads (2007) and Man Overboard (2009), When I’m President—his first new recording since Mott the Hoople’s historic 2009 reunion shows at London’s Hammersmith Odeon—ranks with Hunter’s most impassioned and insightful work.
Hunter’s creative rebirth has produced some of the best music of his lengthy career, and When I’m President continues the remarkable resurgence of this true believer in rock ‘n’ roll’s transformative power.
Hunter will kick of a tour of the United States and Europe on September 1 and more details on this will be announced shortly.
For more information visit the Ian Hunter website HERE.
Electric Warrior (Deluxe Edition) – T.Rex
Once upon a time children there were popstars. I don’t just mean the ‘singers’ of today that run around in the latest gear and warble, I mean popstars. Those people who seemed to be from another world entirely, the likes of David Bowie with his androgynous alien appeal or Jim Morrisson with his filmstar looks. Glam rock overlord Marc Bolan sits proudly amongst these characters that appear larger than life, mysterious, glamorous and certainly not going to be living in a two bed terrace down your street; at least that is how it felt.
But here we are in 2012, the pop world has changed over the decades so does Marc’s persona still hold the thrill it once did? Empathically yes. Just take one listen to Electric Warrior and you will be hooked all over again. Remember this album is now over 40 years old and the impact is even more impressive. 2012 sees the release of the ‘Super Deluxe Edition’ of the album which contains the remastered album plus bonus tracks, demo CD and DVD featuring rare 1970s Top Of The Pops performances. Combined this really does offer a sumptuous collection.
There is little that can be said about the album that has not already been written by a thousand mightier pens than mine, but with the addition of the Number One Hot Love along with the original B-side tracks (not on the original album – but on the Rhino reissue sometime back) this now provides a comprehensive snap shot of T.Rex circa 1971.
The singles Jeepster and Get It On (Bang A Gong) still sound incredible, 40 years on and there are still bands that would kill to sound like this. Cosmic Dancer has the sixties hangover hippy appeal whilst Rip Off still rocks with a barrage of sound that was really a few years ahead of the curve. Electric Warrior still stands as one of the finest albums of the 1970s and defined a new era for T.Rex, gone were the folk leanings of the past, glam rock and superstardom awaited.
The demo disc offers up plenty of ‘previously unreleased’ tracks and unlike so many rarities discs, the sound quality is really high. The most striking thing is how complete many of the demos sound, take the electric demo for Jeepster, rough, ready but the essential elements are there. The acoustic version of Get It On is endearingly raw, little more than Bolan strumming away and capturing the vocal melody.
There are even glimpses into the private world of the studio with the Life’s A Gas (working version) featuring the studio banter and drummer Bill Legend complaining he couldn’t hear anything before Bolan helpfully informs him it is because ‘nothing‘s happening that’s why, no one’s playing anything!’.
For the completists and enthusiasts alike, the disc offers up a plethora of treats and you can pick out the subtle differences, changed lyrics and evolution of most of the Electric Warrior tunes from this collection to your heart’s content.
The DVD acts as a fascinating time capsule, a window back to a time when T.Rex were one of the biggest bands around. They were the only band to have TWO number one singles in 1971, back when a Number one actually meant something to.
Bowie and Bolan were friends and friendly rivals, Bolan’s appearance on TOTP in March 71 caused some controversy for his androgynous dress sense and between him and Bowie they would test the boundaries of the time throughout the early part of the decade. The Christmas special from 71 where the band performs Get It On also features a cameo from Elton John on the piano, sparking some confusion as to whether he was now to be part of the group.
There are also the previously unreleased ‘blue screen’ performances for the German Beat Club tracks along with the official promo cuts for Get It On and Jeepster. The two tracks taken from the Empire Pool Wembley are particularly interesting, Bolan sat crossed legged on the stage, playing a battered (and out of tune) acoustic but clearly with the crowd hanging on every glittery note.
There is nothing worse than a half arsed ‘Deluxe Edition’, something scraping together some grainy footage and a distorted demo just to shift a few more units. Electric Warrior Super Deluxe however is far from this, the DVD provides some stunning quality tracks (both audio and visual) and the demo disc is a glimpse into the world of Bolan we didn’t get to see that often. As a casual fan, this has got me hooked and I’m willing to bet I won’t be the only one either.
The Super Deluxe Edition is released on Monday 23rd April via UMC / A&M Records.
With the Summer Olympics looming,Londonwill be under the world’s media spotlight on a scale not seen since the 1966 World Cup. On the back of the riots last year and the ongoing economic crisis that engulfs the capital, it will be nice to see the city portrayed in a nicer light for a change. With this in mind, a compilation album titled ‘London’, released in association with Time Out magazine, filled with songs inspired by this famous part of the world is very apt at this moment in time.
The tracks concentrate on many aspects of London– the people, places, street names, sights and sounds and while some tracks are more famous than others, the album itself is a pleasant listen from start to finish.
My favourite thing about this compilation is the packaging. With a predictably stereotypical cover that features Big Ben, a red bus, and the Millennium Wheel, it’s what inside the case that impresses me. A fold out map of Camdenwith paragraphs dotted around it telling tales of The Clash shooting pigeons, and where the Sex Pistols rehearsed, you also get treated to an interesting booklet on the various music scenes of North, East, Saaaf and West London.
From Duffy to Bowie and Gerry Rafferty to St. Etienne, there’s a little something for everyone on here.
The track listing is as follows:
Roxy Music – Do The Strand
Jamie Cullum – London Skies
The Kinks – Waterloo Sunset
Squeeze – Piccadilly
Kirsty MacColl – Soho Square
Pet Shop Boys – London
Gerry Rafferty – Baker Street
Simple Minds – Chelsea Girl
Eddy Grant – Electric Avenue
Pulp – Bar Italia
Duffy – Warwick Avenue
The Jam – Strange Town
Ralph McTell – Streets of London
Small Faces – Itchycoo Park
Bert Jansch, John Renbourn – Soho
David Bowie – The London Boys
Caetano Veloso – London London
The Pogues – A Rainy Night In Soho
John Martyn, Beverley Martyn – Primrose Hill
Saint Etienne – London Belongs To Me