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David Bowie - Low CD (album) cover


David Bowie


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4.09 | 442 ratings

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4 stars So here it is. The first album in the Berlin period. The first full collaboration with Brian Eno, and probably at a time in Bowie's life whenever he had been on the most amount of drugs he could possible be.

After the brief flirts with soul music during the mid 70's, the previous album "Station To Station" flirted with some more art rock sounds and had a lot of interesting experiments throughout. The album was a critical success, so Bowie decided to take the experiments even further, and gave Brian Eno a call.

So with Eno's special music treatments and weird use of synths, him and Bowie's worked on this album like children in a sandbox. Experimenting, noodling and creating...just like children. This being the more experimental side of the Berlin trilogy, there is a lot less focus on songwriting and more focus on the experimental side of things.

Lyrically the album is rather a mess. The lyrics don't really have any real meaning, but it does create an interesting image of what Bowie's life was at this point, especially due to his drug habits and mental health problems.

The intro, "Speed Of Life" starts off the album with a brilliant jolt of electricity. An instrumental track, the song has a lot of weird guitar parts mixed with Eno's weird use of keys.

The albums lead single "Sound & Vision" is a brilliant mixture of experimental rock and standard Bowie pop. Rather disjointed throughout, it does come together very well at the end. There is also a piano version of the song, which is worth giving a listen.

The album's second side is where it really get's slightly odder, and in my opinion better. For those who don't know, the second side of the album mainly comprises of instrumental tracks which where supposedly supposed to be used for Bowie's biggest acting accomplishment, in the film "The Man Who Fell To Earth." Because the music was not used, Bowie decided to use a lot of the material for the album, which in my opinion was a great idea, because these last 4 songs really are the greatest moments on the album.

"Warszawa" in my opinion is one of the strongest tracks on the album. An idea taken from Eno's son, the song is an experimental mainly instrumental track that grows and grows like a beautiful flower. When the vocals finally do come in, they are pretty impressive, with Bowie hitting some impressive highs at times.

The album's closing track "Subterraneans" is definitely one of the best moments on the album, and a brilliant way to end of the album. A beautifully crafted instrumental, it really explodes at the end when the multi layered vocals explode.

In conclusion, this album is more of a mixed bag, especially for a Bowie album. Personally, I think it's something very different for Bowie and it is a brilliant piece of work. Wouldn't be my favourite Bowie album, but there is some brilliant moments on this album. With a lot less focus on songwriting and more focus on sounds and experiments, it definitively is Bowie at his most experimental.


arcane-beautiful | 4/5 |


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