The dreaded covers album! This also happens to be the David Bowie studio release I listen to the least ... can you blame me? ... it has the least David Bowie on it!
What's more, hearing him cover all these British Invasion songs gives me flashbacks of Early On
, which pretty conclusively proved that he didn't belong to that era. But anyway, this album exists, so I'm gonna review it (it is my personal mission to review every single album that ever existed. I would one day also like to walk through walls).
Maybe there was some sentiment in the mid-70's that a lot of the great 1960's songs might fade away with time. I don't know. But Bowie really had a soft spot for them, and seeing as he was famous, he decided he would do history a favor and make an album full of glammified versions of these old songs so that everyone would remember them. Although, if that was the actual point of this album, then why did he cover bands like Pink Floyd, The Kinks, The Who, The Pretty Things, and The Yardbirds who were doing a pretty good job of preserving themselves anyway? I dunno.
That Pink Floyd cover is something else, and it's interesting that Bowie would choose something so blatantly psychedelic amidst a sea of more ordinary R&B ditties. Bowie goes to town with that one, incorporating all sorts of interesting touches, including a fruity harpsichord, Classical strings, and a bit of Mike Garson's wild piano. I suppose they could have tightened it up a bit and tried developing a slightly thicker atmosphere, but its flagrant wildness shouldn't go unnoted. Bowie's vocal performance is appealingly upbeat and fun, although unfortunately quite sloppy as well - he was never a great singer, but he was always a capable one, so I'm a bit disappointed he didn't try a bit harder.
by Reviewer: Don Ignacio
(blogging at Don Ignacio's Album Reviews