Category Archives: Music

The Man Who SOld The World 2020 Visconti Remix

I noted a few days ago (you can read it here) that there were a few upcoming releases I was looking forward to, prominent of which was the Tony Visconti remix of David Bowie’s seminal album The Man Who Sold The World, which would be re-released under its original title, Metrobolist.

David Bowie - Metrobolist (aka The Man Who Sold The World) - Amazon.com  Music

The full album is due to be released on November 6th and you can bet I’ll be there to pick it up.

The Man Who Sold The World/Metrobolist is one of my all time favorite David Bowie albums and The Man Who Sold The World, the song, is my all time favorite David Bowie song.

I discovered the song way back in 1984 or so, well before it became big with Nirvana’s famous take on it, which many feel is the best version of the song (sorry, I totally disagree, even if I do feel Nirvana did a pretty terrific version of it).

So blown away am I, to this day, by this song that I feel like it courses through my very blood and somehow always seems to find its way -subtly or not- in my writings.

That’s how much I love the song.

When I heard Tony Visconti, Bowie’s longtime producer, would remix the album, I was very much interested.

Tony Visconti is a terrific talent, a producer who has not only had his hand on many of Bowie’s best works -as producer- but also many other bands.

More recently, he did what I thought was a terrific job re-mixing Bowie’s album Lodger and he did an equally terrific job, IMHO, last year remixing Bowie’s first big hit, Space Oddity

I was incredibly stunned by how much better, IMHO, this new remix sounded compared to the already pretty damn spectacular original.

So, to say the least, I was damned curious to hear what Mr. Visconti would do with The Man Who Sold The World, both album and especially song.

Welp, today we can hear this new version of the song. Here it is:

I’m… I’m torn, to be honest.

The song starts out quite well but then, when it gets to the chorus, the “Who knows? Not me… We never lost control… You’re face to face with the man who sold the world” part…

That damn reverb just kills me. While I felt some of the reverb Mr. Visconti added on Space Oddity worked quite well with that song, it didn’t do so on this one.

Here’s the original version of the song, a 2015 remix which stuck to the original…

Yeah, much better, IMHO.

Mind you, I don’t think what Mr. Visconti did was terrible, its just that the I prefer the original without those reverb flourishes. Further, I’m becoming somewhat concerned that this is what Visconti likes to do: Add reverb to Bowie songs. He did so, if memory serves, also to a song or two in Lodger as well.

Still, I am curious to hear the rest of the album, especially Bowie’s epic song The Width of a Circle, also from the album…

I just hope what comes out of it isn’t a bunch more reverb…!

2020 Gets Even Worse: Eddie Van Halen Dead At 65…

Man, as the headline states, could this year get any worse?

Eddie Van Halen, TMZ reports, has passed away at the age of 65.

For the past decade, it was reported, he had been battling throat cancer and, finally, it spread to his brain and other organs.

As someone who grew up in the 1970’s and 1980’s, Eddie Van Halen and his band, Van Halen, were one of the big ones that were heard frequently on the radio. Lead singer David Lee Roth provided plenty of swagger as the lead singer but Eddie Van Halen’s guitar work was impressive, to say the least…!

I still remember when the album 1984 was released and these songs were HUGE hits on the radio upon their release…

As should be obvious by now, my preference of Van Halen songs tends to skew toward the David Lee Roth years. They were known for their very heavy sound, certainly, but unlike some metal music acts that came later they always seemed to be playing around/goofing off. In the case of Eddie Van Halen in particular, it seemed he always played with a huge smile on his face, like he was having a blast and never taking things all that seriously.

After the release of 1984, though, things started to go south for Van Halen. There were tensions between the band and David Lee Roth and he was gone after that album and Sammy Hagar joined the group as the lead singer.

Truthfully, I can’t say I was much of a fan of that version of Van Halen, even though I have/had nothing against Mr. Hagar. It just didn’t work as well for me. Though that version of the band was together for some 10 years, Hagar left and Gary Cherone was brought in for one album (if memory serves) but lasted together only some 3 years.

David Lee Roth re-united with the band twice while Hagar re-joined once but it was always temporary and the glory days of the band, it seemed, were in the past.

For the past several years very little has been heard about Eddie Van Halen other than that he was sick, but I never knew the situation was as grave as it was and the news of his passing is a real shock.

Think I might pull out an old album and give it a whirl…

Upcoming…!

Been a while since I’ve been excited to see/hear some new releases and it turns out there are at least three things being released in the next couple of months I’m intrigued about.

First up is the November 6th release of the newly remastered David Bowie album Metrobolist.

What, you never heard of that album?

Welp, for good reason: This was the original title David Bowie had for the album that was eventually known as The Man Who Sold The World.

See, at quite literally the very last minute the record company decided Metrobolist was too weird a title (I guess) and renamed it after what is probably the most famous song on it.

The album will feature its original artwork, the cartoonish bit you see above, along with the photographs of Bowie in a dress which wound up being used on the album’s cover later on…

Metrobolist/The Man Who Sold The World is officially David Bowie’s third album after David Bowie and Space Oddity and, IMHO, the first “real” Bowie album through and through. Others might quibble and say Space Oddity is the “real” first Bowie album but, other than a few intriguing songs -including his first big hit- I feel that album is still showing Bowie as a work in progress.

Longtime Bowie producer Tony Visconti has remastered the album and, based on how well he remastered the song Space Oddity (he also remastered the entire album, but I have yet to hear it), it could prove to be something quite special. We’ll see on November 6th!

Next up, also for a November 6th release, is Albert Bouchard’s Re Imaginos.

For those who don’t know the name, Mr. Bouchard used to be the drummer for Blue Oyster Cult and, perhaps most famously, was the one responsible for the “cowbell” in their hit song Don’t Fear The Reaper.

However, back in the 1980’s, the band and he had a falling out and he left them. Shortly afterwards and in the early 1980’s he worked on an album he called Imaginos, which used many of Blue Oyster Cult’s songs and created a concept album.

However, acrimony between the band and he led to the album being taken away from his hands. It was re-worked by the other members of the band and eventually released in 1988…

Bouchard’s original demo version of the album was leaked years ago and can be heard here:

Anyway, the years past and we fast forward to now and Blue Oyster Cult, without Bouchard as their drummer, are about to release a new album. Amusingly, their first music video release for their first single, That Was Me, features a guest appearance by Albert Bouchard and he’s banging away at a… cowbell! (He first appears around the 1:05 mark of the below video)

My guess, when I first saw the video, was that Mr. Bouchard and the remaining original members of Blue Oyster Cult have (perhaps) settled their differences and are even having a laugh at their shared past, though based on the video it doesn’t appear Mr. Bouchard has returned to the band but rather re-appeared for this video and/or provided “cowbell” for that particular song.

However, shortly following the release of the above single/video, I read that Mr. Bouchard was going to release Re Imaginos, his polished up version of the original Imaginos album. A video was released for the song Black Telescope, which is a considerable departure from Workshop of the Telescopes, the original version of the song made by Blue Oyster Cult.

Here’s Mr. Bouchard’s new version of the song from Re Imaginos, which takes on an old mariner’s sound:

And here’s the original version of the song…

Interestingly, if you go back to that demo of Bouchard’s Imaginos I presented above, Workshop of the Telescopes/Black Telescope wasn’t part of that original version of his album!

Anyway, Re Imaginos comes out on November 6th, as I said before, and it should be interesting to hear, especially if you’re a fan of Blue Oyster Cult!

Finally, its been announced that Christopher Nolan’s Tenet will be released to home video come December 15th.

I’m very curious to see the film but there was simply no way I would go to a theater to see it. First, the local theaters in my neck of the woods were closed through the original release dates. Secondly, even if they were open I wouldn’t have felt comfortable being in an enclosed area watching a 2 hour long film. It’s simply not safe.

But I will pick up the movie when its released to home video!

Megadeth’s Rust In Peace at 30…

Wouldn’t you know it, I just finish writing up my glowing tribute to what I consider David Bowie’s best later career album, 1. Outside, and then go looking around the internet and discover that what is arguably Megadeth’s all time best album -and quite possibly all time best metal/thrash album- Rust In Peace was released on this date, September 24th, 1990!

Wow!

I got into metal/thrash in the mid to late 1980’s, finding myself liking the works of Megadeth (natch) and Anthrax the most. I wasn’t too big on Metallica, who were on the rise back then, but did like their first album Kill ’em All. It’s possible I liked that album because, for those who don’t know, the brains behind Megadeth, Dave Mustaine, was a member of Metallica but was booted from the band shortly before they released that first album.

Several songs on it are listed as being co-written by Mustaine, and Mustaine, to his credit, took that rejection and founded his own band, eventually releasing Rust in Peace.

Sadly, over the years I’ve found it difficult to read interviews with Mr. Mustaine. While in the early years he appeared to have a very liberal temperament, even going so far as to pen the song Hook In Mouth, which lashed out against the PMRC, an organization that tried to rein in foul lyrics on albums, he’s subsequently turned into a rather… extreme individual who seems to eat up Alex Jones and -if memory serves- being a proponent of some of the more extreme right wing religious candidates out there.

Yes, I do believe he bought into the “Barack Obama wasn’t a U.S. citizen” crap, too.

Ah well.

Love the art, not necessarily the artist, no?

Rust in Peace is an absolutely terrific album, regardless of what has become of Dave Mustaine, and I whole heartedly recommend it to anyone interested in checking out that type of music…

…however…

Dave Mustaine issued a “remix” of the album and that, unfortunately, is mostly what’s available nowadays on streaming services and… it’s just not as good as the original version of the album.

Sadly, Mr. Mustaine has done that to many of his early albums and, for the most part, the end result has been less. I prefer the original version of Rust in Peace and So Far, So Good, So What (their third album) over the remixed versions.

On the other hand, their first album, Killing Is My Business, actually sounded better in the remix, though its a shame one can’t hear the original lyrics he put into his remake of the Nancy Sinatra song These Boots.

But I’m drifting here…

Give Rust in Peace a listen if you’re curious.

It’s damn good stuff!

David Bowie’s Outside at 25…

My how the time flies…

Twenty five years ago, in 1995, David Bowie released 1. Outside (as it was designated, though the album does seem to have different titles, including leaving off the “1.”).

When it was released, I recall purchasing the CD -that’s the way music was being sold back then, what with the internet in its infancy and MP3s either not yet available or in the process of becoming.

It’s admittedly difficult as the years pass to recall specifics of a time so very long ago, but I do recall eagerly picking the album up -as I did with every new Bowie album- and finding it at first difficult to get into but, after a couple of listens, finding myself really loving it.

Alas, critics -again if my memory is right- weren’t quite as enamored. Many felt the album was simply too much, bursting to the rim as it was. Indeed, the album runs dangerously close to the maximum 75 minutes a CD allows, and a subsequent re-release of the album, featuring the song Get Real, allowed quite literally only a minute or so of time to spare on the CD!

Over at popmatters.com, Adam Trainer offers a very in depth retrospective of this album, which I found very intriguing and, if you’re a David Bowie music fan as I am, might find intriguing too:

What a Fantastic Death Abyss: David Bowie’s “Outside” at 25

I’ve said it before ’round these parts and I’ll repeat it: I feel that of all of David Bowie’s later albums, 1. Outside is my favorite, with Blackstar, his final work, coming in a close second.

Outside (I’ll refer to the album by this designation… It’s easier to type this than putting that damn “1.” in front of!) is, IMHO, a terrific work, one that flows through so many different musical styles and themes and… its mind-blowing. So mind-blowing and so filled to the brim with material that I totally understand why some people may find it just too damn much to take.

This is an album that demands you give it your attention and time and, if you’re unable or uninterested in doing so, then you likely won’t care for it.

Ah, but if you do have that patience and do give it a look-see, there is plenty here to love.

In his article, Mr. Trainer correctly notes that The Buddha of Suburbia, the album that preceded Outside, is almost like a dry run and does indeed feature an early version of the song Strangers When We Meet, which would close out both albums in their original forms. Worth checking out as well, even if many don’t consider it a “true” Bowie album. It is, even if it is a “soundtrack” to a BBC miniseries.

Anyway, I don’t disagree with some of the criticism Mr. Trainer also levels against the album: Perhaps if Mr. Bowie had whittled the material down to, say, 40 minutes, we might have had something many would have considered a spectacular album. Further, I wouldn’t argue with the fact that some of the album’s “segues”, which are snippets of dialogue that tell the story of various characters involved in the songs, may be disposable…

…and yet, I love the album as it is, start to end.

And when it soars, as it does with songs like The Heart’s Filthy Lesson, The Motel, I Have Not Been to Oxford Town (in my opinion one of the cleverest of the songs on the album, taken from the point of view of someone who’s been accused of a murder they didn’t commit, and realizing while sitting in jail they’re about to take the fall for the crime), I’m Deranged, Thru These Architect Eyes, and, yes indeed, Strangers When We Meet.

The album, frankly, is bursting with so much good stuff and, as time passes, I’m more and more impressed with it.

So often people compared the latest Bowie album and wondered if it was as good as Scary Monsters and Super Creeps, which many considered the last great Bowie album.

Sorry folks, much as I love Scary Monsters, and I do love it, I think Outside is overall even better.

Music Flashback Friday…

Sometimes when you’ve got music in the background while working, you note recommendations appear and, the other day, a 1982 album by Kim Carnes showed up: Voyeur.

For those unfamiliar with the name, Kim Carnes is probably most famous for this song, which was pretty damn popular in its day:

When I saw the recommended album, I figured it must be the one that had Bette Davis Eyes on it. I was wrong, but as it turned out, I was familiar with at least two of the songs on the album.

I can honestly say I haven’t heard either of those songs in a very long time, likely in/around the time they were originally released nearly (gulp) forty years ago.

The first was the song the album was named after, Voyeur

Man, do I love the song… a beautiful distillation of 80’s synth new wave…!

But, man (redux), pretty depressing video concept, no? Abusive boyfriend, an implied murdered woman (with Kim Carnes herself being the next victim?)… huh. I wonder if the downbeat nature of this video might have harmed the song in the long run. Who knows.

The second song I recognized was Looker, though the version I was more familiar with I’ll get to in a moment:

The original version of the song was by Sue Saad and was the theme of the film of the same name, the Michael Crichton written/directed Looker (the video below shows sequences from that movie, in case you’re wondering. The film was about supermodels who are being killed for… reasons. The film didn’t make a whole lot of sense, even if some of the women presented were quite gorgeous!)…

Weird that the film would be released with the song in 1981 and then Kim Carnes would do her version only a year later in Voyeur!

Finally, there was an extended version of the song Voyeur. It runs nearly two minutes longer than the original version of the song…

This has been your 1980’s synth/new wave flashback for the day!

😉

David Bowie Albums Ranked…

Over at faroutmagazine.com.uk they did a ranking of all the David Bowie albums. You can check it out here:

Ranking all of David Bowie’s albums in order of greatness

As I’ve noted many times before, I’m a big fan of David Bowie’s work. In fact, I consider him the all time best “solo” musical artist there ever was, though obviously he worked with many very talented musicians in his career.

I also have noted I like lists, though part of the fun reading them is finding where you disagree with them.

In the case of this list, there are albums ranked low I feel should be much higher. There are some ranked higher than I would have ranked them. Again, that’s part of the fun.

To begin, though, I have little argument with what they consider the “worst” of Bowie’s albums, 1999’s Hours, which is placed at #27. Many people, including David Bowie himself, felt his 1987 album Never Let Me Down (on this list at #24) is his worst and, frankly, I can’t argue with that either.

Hours’ problem is that the album is mellow -not a crime in and of itself- to the point of being dull, though it does have -like pretty much all Bowie albums- some damn good compositions.

I’m scratching my head a little at the second worst album, 2003’s Reality. While I agree with much of what they say about it -it feels like a middle of the road Bowie album- I feel like its better than second worst. In fact, I’d put the already mentioned Never Let Me Down, Black Tie White Noise (1993 and #22 on this list) or David Bowie ( His “first” full album released in 1967 and found one spot up at #25) lower than Reality. Frankly, I might also place Space Oddity (1969 and #16 on the list) below that album as well, though it does include the absolutely smashing first big hit Bowie created. Unfortunately, the rest of the album isn’t as good, though there are a couple of songs worth checking out nonetheless.

For me, too, having the 1997 album Earthling come in at the very low #23 also feels a little rough. While not my all time favorite Bowie album, it nonetheless had some really good songs on it like Dead Man Walking and, of course, I’m Afraid of Americans. The fifth least of Bowie’s albums? Nah, I don’t think so.

Similarly, one of my favorite later Bowie works, 1. Outside, is placed in #18, below #17th Heathen (2002). 1. Outside, IMHO, should be further up. Heathen had some really good songs, including the remake of Conversation Piece (though it wasn’t included on the album but was a part of the bonus CD issued upon its release) but for whatever reason that album didn’t do all that much for me.

Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) (1980) is given the number 10 spot, behind some damn good albums but also some headscratchers. I love Lodger (1979 and #9 on the list) and Let’s Dance (1983 and #8 on the list), which was my entry album to the genius that is David Bowie, but I consider Scary Monsters nonetheless a better overall album than those two, if not by all that much.

I’m fascinated they included both Tin Machine (1989 and #13 on the list) and Tin Machine II (1991 and #20 on the list) but have to scratch my head by the exclusion of The Buddha Of Suburbia (1993). While that album was a “soundtrack” album not unlike some other albums excluded which featured David Bowie songs, including Labyrinth, Cat People, The Falcon and the Snowman, and Absolute Beginners, the difference between that album and the others is that while they had one or two songs by David Bowie, The Buddha of Suburbia is a full/complete David Bowie album and included original compositions not on the BBC show the soundtrack was made for. It also has the original version of Strangers When We Meet, which was re-done and included on the terrific 1. Outside.

If you really love Bowie, though, the bottom line is that you’re going to have issues with this placement or that placement of the albums but, ultimately, its all about one’s taste.

I think just about the only thing most David Bowie fans can agree upon is which of his albums belong at the prestigious #1 spot on this or any such list: 1972’s The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders of Mars.

This was unquestionably Bowie’s masterpiece and the album which brought him his first major commercial and cultural -as in bringing “glitter rock” to the forefront- success.

Anyway, check out the list. If you’re a more casual David Bowie fan, you may find some albums there worth checking out!

Psychedelic Furs, Made Of Rain (2020) A (On Time!) Review

Back in the 1980’s, one of my favorite bands was The Psychedelic Furs. Their music was post-punk/new wave but they seemed to steer a course uniquely their own, with hits including Pretty In Pink, the song which became the basis/title to a John Hughes directed film…

Here’s one of their biggest hits and one of my favorites, Love My Way (love the drumming toward the end of the song!)…

And here’s the absolutely haunting and lovely The Ghost In You

The group seemed to build steam, becoming better and better and more popular with each new album. Then came their 1987 album Midnight To Midnight, which I personally loved but which others seemed to feel was a big drop in quality for the Furs, as well as embarrassing for the images they used (specifically, all that flashy leather) on their album cover and interiors…

Midnight To Midnight

While I loved the album, their subsequent follow up albums, 1989’s Book of Days and 1991’s World Outside, also in my estimation pretty damn good works, seemed to show interest in the Furs and their music was in decline among the general public. Neither album -at least that I can remember- made much of a splash and after the World Outside release, it seemed the Furs were done.

Lead singer/writer Richard Butler would go on to release two albums under the Love Spit Love moniker and, again, I liked them but yet again they didn’t seem to make many waves with the public.

The Psychedelic Furs, however, reformed and continued touring and, while doing so, Richard Butler and company decided they didn’t want to simply keep repeating/singing the old standards. They developed an itch to create a new album with new songs.

So an astonishing twenty nine years after the release of their last album, The Psychedelic Furs last week released their brand new album Made of Rain.

Made of Rain

Frankly, I was both astonished and pleased with the new material.

This is a strong album which is very much filled with the Furs’ best type of songs: At times morose, mysterious, and heart-felt.

One song in particular just blows my socks off, No-One

Just… wow.

While I feel that song is the highlight of the album, there are plenty of other great tunes to dig into, including The Boy That Invented Rock and Roll and Don’t Believe.

The album sounds like it could have been released in/around the time the other wonderful Furs albums were released. Yeah, I guess you could take that as a backhanded compliment: Jeeze, have they progressed any in all these years?

It isn’t a backhanded compliment, though. When picking up a Furs album, one expects a certain sound and tone and this album has it in spades.

A critic noted this album was like David Bowie’s Blackstar, a magnificent new work which neatly fits into and compliments the others.

While I hope this isn’t the last we hear of new Psychedelic Furs works, it shows that when Butler and company got together and decided to do something new, they didn’t just rest on their laurels. They came back with a beautiful, wonderful new work which proudly sits among their best.

Highly recommended, especially for Furs fans like myself!

ChangesNowBowie (2020) a (On Time) Review

Released to digital/streaming services on April 17th, ChangesNowBowie is the latest David Bowie project released since his passing (gulp) four years ago.

I swear, I had to look that up and double check to be sure, but, yeah, David Bowie passed away on January 10, 2016. It’s been a little over four years since his passing!

Anyway, genius.com offers the following list of the songs and a little behind the scenes information on what this album is:

David Bowie: ChangesNowBowie

Repeating a little of what was at that website, ChangesNowBowie features essentially acoustic versions of several of Mr. Bowie’s songs. They were recorded as David Bowie was practicing for the big 50th Birthday Bash party he hosted back in 1996.

The songs aren’t bad at all yet I would add that neither was I necessarily totally blown away by these more mellow interpretations. The songs chosen are mostly songs that are more obscure to those who are only casually familiar with Mr. Bowie’s discography. Perhaps the most famous/well known songs are The Man Who Sold The World and Lady Stardust. What makes this album most interesting is hearing him go through some of these more obscure songs.

In fact, I’d say the later half of the album, starting with Lady Stardust (one of my favorite Ziggy Stardust tracks) through The Supermen (a song that works incredibly well as acoustically, from the album The Man Who Sold The World) through Repetition (a Lodger track I’ve always liked) through Andy Warhol and Quicksand (both found on Hunky Dory) are the highlights of the album.

On the other hand, the album starts with The Man Who Sold The World (its ok, didn’t really blow me away) goes to Aladdin Sane (this track works better frantic rather than the more laid back acoustic version, IMHO) to White Light/White Heat (a Velvet Underground song Bowie really enjoyed covering in concert, especially during his Ziggy Stardust era) and finally goes to Shopping For Girls (from Tin Machine II) which, also to me, sounded better in the original version.

Still, a nice enough album worth checking out if you’re a fan of David Bowie.

Anyway, see if you agree with me on at least one of the songs, the pretty obscure Tin Machine II entry Shopping for Girls. Here’s the original version…

And this is the more mellow/acoustic version found on ChangesNowBowie

It’s not bad, as I said above, but it didn’t necessarily prove a significant counter to the original.

David Bowie: The Man Who Sold the World (Eno “Live” Mix) (2020 Remaster)

We come to Valentine’s Day, a Friday, and supposedly the last of the songs that will be featured on the upcoming David Bowie EP Is It Any Wonder?, due to be released on the 20th.

I say “supposedly” because looking around here and there, it appears there will be one more song added to this EP, Fun (Clownboy Mix) and I have no clue what that one is but when you search around the Is It Any Wonder? information, it is listed as a seventh track. Perhaps a “hidden” track to be featured on the album itself and not part of the one-song-a-week release schedule?

I dunno.

Anyway, the “new” song released this week, alas, isn’t really new. That is, if you’ve been a devout David Bowie fan (or a maniac like me) and have picked up his stuff pretty religiously as it was being released. The 6th song in this song-a-week release schedule is The Man Who Sold The World (Eno “Live” Mix) (2020 Remaster).

A bit of history, at least as best as I can remember: When Nirvana did their cover of The Man Who Sold The World on MTV, it was a BIG hit. David Bowie found himself getting love for a song that was in his very distant past, and he would start using it more frequently in his shows. Why not? People loved it and wanted to hear him sing it!

At around that time he did the magnificent album 1. Outside, which I’ve said many times before I consider David Bowie’s best later-year album. However, the album wasn’t met with much love from critics or many fans. They thought it was too much, too dense. Hard to get into.

Whatever.

As it turned out, the years were kind to the album and many now look at it as a damn good work.

One of the album’s better songs was Strangers When We Meet, a reworking of the same song which was released on Bowie’s Buddha of Suburbia, the album that came just before 1. Outside and was one of David Bowie’s least known (and I suppose selling) albums. So it made sense to Mr. Bowie, I suppose, to take that song and rework it and add it to 1. Outside in the hopes of people giving it another chance.

Here is the 1. Outside version of Strangers When We Meet:

What the hell does all that have to do with our last (or is it second to last?) Is It Any Wonder? song?

Following the release of 1. Outside, Mr. Bowie would release a “single” version of Strangers When We Meet on CD and it included not only that song, but a reworking of The Man Who Sold The World, which is pretty significantly different in many ways from the original version (and in some ways very similar), the original Buddha of Suburbia version of Strangers When We Meet, and the 1. Outside outtake Get Real.

Strangers When We Meet

I believe that reworked version of The Man Who Sold The World, until now, was only available on that EP CD. Welp, its been remastered and is now part of the Is It Any Wonder? EP and here it is…

I have to say, I like the song quite a bit versus some of the other remade songs which are present on the Is It Any Wonder? EP.

But…

I don’t think its quite as good as the original version.

Then again, the original version is so ingrained in my mind its hard to consider an alternate version, at least for me!

Still, overall I nonetheless like this version of The Man Who Sold The World and am glad we’re now getting it as part of the Is It Any Wonder? EP.

Having said that, what do I think of the EP overall?

I dunno. I still haven’t heard that last song so maybe I should withhold judgment.

If I were to focus on these six songs, though, my feelings are this EP is only “ok” at best. There’s some good stuff here but the remakes of older songs, particularly I Can’t Read, Stay, and Baby Universal, I felt were pretty much all weaker than the original version, with Baby Universal the only one of the lot that approached the positive feelings I have of the original and which engenders similar feelings in me to this version of The Man Who Sold The World.

I’ll likely get the EP when it does come out, so there’s that, but I do feel like there must be other stuff in the vaults worth bringing to light, especially during the 1970’s (ie his Ziggy Stardust, Plastic Soul, and Berlin years).

Perhaps this is the first of many such EPs to come!