Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography

HUNKY DORY

David Bowie

Prog Related


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

David Bowie Hunky Dory album cover
4.15 | 404 ratings | 18 reviews | 40% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
rock music collection


Write a review
Buy DAVID BOWIE Music
from Progarchives.com partners
Studio Album, released in 1971

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Changes (3:37)
2. Oh! You Pretty Things (3:12)
3. Eight Line Poem (2:55)
4. Life On Mars? (3:53)
5. Kooks (2:53)
6. Quicksand (5:08)
7. Fill Your Heart (Biff Rose, Paul Williams) (3:07)
8. Andy Warhol (3:56)
9. Song For Bob Dylan (4:12)
10. Queen Bitch (3:18)
11. The Bewlay Brothers (5:22)

Total time 41:33

Bonus tracks on 1990 remaster:
12. Bombers (Previously Unreleased) (2:38)
13. The Supermen (Alternate Version) (2:41)
14. Quicksand (Demo Version) (4:43)
15. The Bewlay Brothers (Alternate Mix) (5:19)

Lyrics

Search DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory lyrics

Music tabs (tablatures)

Search DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory tabs

Line-up / Musicians

- David Bowie / vocals, guitar, alto & tenor saxes, piano (2,3,11)

With:
- Mick Ronson / guitar, Mellotron (?), backing vocals, arrangements
- Rick Wakeman / piano
- Trevor Bolder / bass, trumpet (?)
- Mick Woodmansey / drums, percussion

Releases information

Artwork: George Underwood & Terry Pastor w/ Brian Ward (photo)

LP RCA Victor ‎- SF 8244 (1971, UK)

CD RCA ‎- PD84623 (1985, Europe)
CD EMI ‎- CDEMC 3572 (1990, UK) Remastered by Toby Mountain w/ 4 bonus tracks
CD EMI ‎- 521 8990 (1999, Europe) 24-bit remaster by Peter Mew with Nigel Reeve

Thanks to micky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
Edit this entry

DAVID BOWIE MP3, Free Download (music stream)


Open extended player in a new pop-up window | Random Playlist (50) | How to submit new MP3s

Buy DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory Music


Hunky Dory (180 Gram Vinyl)Hunky Dory (180 Gram Vinyl)
Rhino/Parlophone 2016
Vinyl$16.89
$18.99 (used)
Hunky DoryHunky Dory
Remastered
Rhino/Parlophone 2015
Audio CD$4.74
$6.99 (used)
Hunky DoryHunky Dory
Import · Remastered
Wea Japan 2014
Audio CD$12.35
$12.34 (used)
Hunky DoryHunky Dory
Import
EMI Japan 2009
Audio CD$94.99
$39.57 (used)
Hunky Dory by David Bowie (1999-09-28)Hunky Dory by David Bowie (1999-09-28)
Virgin / EMI
Audio CD$40.44
Hunky Dory [Japanese Mini Vinyl Replica Edition] by David BowieHunky Dory [Japanese Mini Vinyl Replica Edition] by David Bowie
Emi Divested
Audio CD$169.82
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory LP Vinyl VG+ Cover VG+ Sleeve 1973 RCA LSP 4623DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory LP Vinyl VG+ Cover VG+ Sleeve 1973 RCA LSP 4623
byfrm_me
Vinyl$50.00 (used)
The Man Who Sold The World/Hunky dory by David BowieThe Man Who Sold The World/Hunky dory by David Bowie
Imports
Audio CD$86.66
Aladdin Sane/Diamond Dogs/Hunky Dory by David BowieAladdin Sane/Diamond Dogs/Hunky Dory by David Bowie
EMI
Audio CD$252.94

Right Now on Ebay (logo)
David Bowie Hunky Dory EMI Bonus Tracks Rare CD NOT Pic Disc - Black Text USD $12.54 Buy It Now 5h 14m
Hunky Dory [Remastered] by David Bowie. USD $28.05 Buy It Now 5h 16m
Rare David Bowie Hunky Dory MINI Vinyl CD Edition TOCP Japan SHMCD USD $119.63 Buy It Now 14h 50m
David Bowie Hunky Dory Vinyl Lp Record USD $7.03 [2 bids]
18h 12m
David Bowie Hunky Dory remastered 180gm reissue vinyl LP USD $18.56 Buy It Now 20h 25m
David Bowie Hunky Dory Picture Disc. Plastic Sleeve. Never Played. USD $23.84 [0 bids]
23h 45m
David Bowie Hunky Dory vinyl LP. Brand New. Never Played. USD $15.69 [0 bids]
23h 55m
DAVID BOWIE ~ HUNKY DORY ~ ORIGINAL UK GERMANY CD 1980s 1ST PRESS NICE CONDITION USD $81.60 Buy It Now 1 day
David Bowie Hunky Dory LP RCA LSP-4623 Stereo 1971 Inner Orange Labels 3S VG-/VG USD $20.00 [0 bids]
1 day
CD David Bowie Hunky Dory USD $10.04 Buy It Now 1 day
David Bowie Hunky Dory 1980 RCA Analog USA EXC Press ULTRASONIC CLEAN USD $56.00 Buy It Now 1 day
DAVID BOWIE, HUNKY DORY, 1971, ORIGINAL LYRIC INSERT, EXCELLENT CONDITION USD $23.84 [0 bids]
1 day
David Bowie Hunky Dory CD NEW SEALED 1999 Digital Remaster Life On Mars?/Changes USD $7.52 Buy It Now 1 day
DAVID BOWIE - HUNKY DORY (Remastered CD) NEW & SEALED ... Best USD $3.75 [0 bids]
2 days
David Bowie: Hunky Dory * 180 Gram Vinyl LP 2016 USD $21.99 Buy It Now 2 days
DAVID BOWIE : HUNKY DORY (RCA INTS 5064 / NL 13844, GREEN LABEL) USD $7.73 [3 bids]
2 days
DAVID BOWIE HUNKY DORY UK RCA REPRESS SF 8244 2E 3T RASPUTIN EX USD $25.10 [0 bids]
2 days
DAVID BOWIE - HUNKY DORY (180 G/RM) - VINYL USD $25.29 Buy It Now 2 days
David Bowie 3 vinyl LP records lot NEW SEALED 180g Hunky Dory Ziggy Stardust + USD $32.99 [1 bids]
2 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory [LP] (180 Gram, 2015 Remaster) USD $27.00 Buy It Now 2 days
David Bowie LP Hunky Dory UK orange RCA Press 4E & 3E & Insert LOVELY COPY USD $13.18 [2 bids]
2 days
DAVID BOWIE TWO (2) LP VINYL RECORD ALBUMS Hunky Dory & Interview Disc DJL1-3840 USD $54.99 Buy It Now 2 days
DAVID BOWIE Promo Mini LP SHM-CD Hunky Dory 2009 OOP Japan TOCP-95043 USD $26.52 [0 bids]
2 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory LP USD $20.00 [1 bids]
2 days
David Bowie ?- Hunky Dory : RCA ?- PK 1850 : Cassette, Album, RARE ITALIAN USD $32.63 Buy It Now 2 days
RARE OOP Hunky Dory (Ryko) by David Bowie CD (Jan-1990, Rykodisc USA) USD $33.00 Buy It Now 2 days
DAVID BOWIE - Hunky Dory on Picture Disc + Rarities, NEW, UNPLAYED - RARE USD $19.00 [0 bids]
2 days
DAVID BOWIE CD HUNKY DORY (Incl Life On Mars) EX+ USD $5.01 Buy It Now 2 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory - 2015 Remastered Audio CD USD $12.82 Buy It Now 2 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory - Rare UK 11trk Limited Edition picture disc vinyl LP USD $18.82 [1 bids]
2 days
David Bowie HUNKY DORY Remastered CHANGES Parlophone NEW SEALED CD USD $6.99 [0 bids]
2 days
HUNKY DORY DAVID BOWIE CD REMASTERED 2015 CHANGES LIFE ON MARS BOB DYLAN KOOKS USD $6.26 [0 bids]
2 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory (2012) USD $8.09 Buy It Now 2 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory Remastered 180g 2016 NM Played Twice. In shrink. INSERT USD $13.80 Buy It Now 2 days
Hunky Dory O.S.T. by David Bowie. USD $22.82 Buy It Now 3 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory TOCP-70143 CD JAPAN USD $53.52 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory LP USD $13.00 [11 bids]
3 days
DAVID BOWIE HUNKY DORY PICTURE DISC LIMITED #9238 USD $79.99 Buy It Now 3 days
Lot of 4 David Bowie LPs Hunky Dory/Tonight/David Live VG free shipping USD $55.00 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory & Labyrinth LP rare vinyl rock movie dynaflex RCA 70s 80s USD $75.00 [0 bids]
USD $99.99 Buy It Now
3 days
DAVID BOWIE 'HUNKY DORY' BRAND NEW SEALED RE-ISSUE LP ON 180 GRAM VINYL USD $31.32 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie/Hunky Dory CD ALBUM NEW USD $11.29 Buy It Now 3 days
david bowie lp hunky dory USD $25.11 [0 bids]
3 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory LP VINYL 11 Track Black Label Reissue (nl83844) GERMAN USD $32.94 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie 6CD Set Hunky Dory Ziggy Stardust Aladdin Sane Pinups Diamond Dogs.. USD $61.99 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie-Hunky Dory EMI TOCP-70143 Japan OOP USD $49.99 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory - Vinyl 1983 Reissue LP - GD+ GD+ USD $25.11 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory LP NEW SEALED Reissue Vinyl Record USD $22.99 Buy It Now 3 days
David Bowie, Hunky Dory SF 8244 Early Unlaminated w/inner 2A 3A Superb Ex+!! USD $93.53 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory LP RARE 1981 RCA GREEN LABEL UK PRESSING NEAR MINT COPY USD $87.87 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory RCA LP AYL1 3844 rare edition nice! USD $99.95 Buy It Now 4 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory, Early UK Press, Insert, Titanic, Rare Matrix No.s VG/VG USD $62.77 Buy It Now 4 days
NM DAVID BOWIE HUNKY DORY INTS5064UK VINYL LP +INSERT PRO CLEAN GLAM ROCK USD $25.10 [0 bids]
4 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory VG+ NM Record Company Demo Vinyl Record 1971 Promo USD $59.99 Buy It Now 4 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory RCA Press Lp USD $39.99 Buy It Now 4 days
LP Album" David Bowie, Hunky Dory, 1971, No. LSP 4623 USD $35.00 [0 bids]
4 days
DAVID BOWIE - HUNKY DORY (REMASTERED 2015) VINYL LP NEW+ USD $25.35 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory 1999 CD Remastered Virgin 21899 w Changes ANDY WARHOL USD $8.00 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory LP VINYL 11 Track Black Label Reissue With Lifetimes In USD $32.94 Buy It Now 4 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory SHMCD Japan TOCP-95043 Superior Sound Quality HTF USD $62.77 Buy It Now 4 days
Rare David Bowie Hunky Dory Aladdin Sane Lodger Japan Imports Edition MINT USD $171.42 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE-HUNKY DORY-JAPAN CD D20 USD $16.99 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory CD BRAND NEW 2015 Remaster USD $11.08 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE "Hunky Dory" 1971 1st Press M- Vinyl NM Jkt w/Insert RCA-LSP-4623 Lp USD $34.99 [1 bids]
4 days
DAVID BOWIE - HUNKY DORY - VINYL LP 1980 RE RCA INTERNATIONAL (GREEN LABEL) USD $50.21 Buy It Now 4 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory - Early UK Orange RCA pressing USD $43.94 Buy It Now 4 days
DAVID BOWIE VINYL LP - HUNKY DORY - Mainman ?- INTS 5064 USD $25.10 Buy It Now 4 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory Days - A4 Photo Print USD $3.75 Buy It Now 4 days
David Bowie Album Bundle: Heathen, Best of..., Hunky Dory - Glam/Art Rock USD $17.58 Buy It Now 5 days
DAVID BOWIE - Hunky Dory - CD Album *Remastered**Life On Mars, Changes* USD $6.58 Buy It Now 5 days
DAVID BOWIE LP Hunky Dory RCA Tan Label RE LSP 4623 Still In Shrink Hype Sticker USD $149.99 Buy It Now 5 days
DAVID BOWIE - Hunky Dory - RCA Japan CD Rare / Very Good - Mick Ronson / Wakeman USD $69.99 Buy It Now 5 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory 1972 Vinyl LP Record 1st Press LSP-4623 Germany (NM) USD $49.95 [0 bids]
5 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory LP Near-MINT RED VINYL Spain REISSUE sm1332 USD $15.00 [0 bids]
5 days
DAVID BOWIE cd HUNKY DORY changes LIFE ON MARS queen bitch ANDY WORHOL kooks USD $49.99 Buy It Now 5 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory (Remastered) - 180gram Vinyl LP *NEW & SEALED* USD $25.21 Buy It Now 5 days
DAVID BOWIE HUNKY DORY 1ST PRESSING GEM CREDITS 3T 3T BOBIL RASPUTIN V.GOOD USD $69.05 Buy It Now 5 days
David Bowie - Presentation CD Display MULTI LISTING USD $16.31 Buy It Now 5 days
David bowie hunky dory 2016 180grm vinyl re issue sealed mint USD $31.39 Buy It Now 5 days
DAVID BOWIE "Hunky Dory" 1973 1st Press M- Vinyl EX Jkt w/Insert RCA-LSP-4852 Lp USD $34.99 [0 bids]
6 days
DAVID BOWIE-HUNKY DORY-2016-180g VINYL LP+INSERT & INNER-NEW & SEALED USD $31.37 Buy It Now 6 days
Hunky Dory by David Bowie (CD, Feb-2012, Decca) USD $7.52 Buy It Now 6 days
DAVID BOWIE - HUNKY DORY LP ORIG 1971 UK ORANGE RCA SF8244 WITH INSERT N/MINT USD $6.26 [0 bids]
6 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory [Remastered] (1999) USD $6.26 [0 bids]
6 days
DAVID BOWIE: Hunky Dory UK Simply Vinyl 180g VINYL LP Rare SVLP 265 NM- USD $50.00 Buy It Now 6 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory ORIG 12" 33RPM LP Classic Rock VG+ First Press RCA Orange USD $4.99 [1 bids]
6 days
Hunky Dory [Bonus Tracks] by David Bowie (CD, 1990, Rykodisc USA) USD $0.99 [1 bids]
6 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory 2 LP set 3 side vinyl record set sealed NEW RARE Ryko USD $154.00 Buy It Now 6 days
David Bowie Sticker! "Life on Mars" Hunky Dory , Berlin period, Brian Eno, Ziggy USD $4.71 Buy It Now 6 days
Rare David Bowie Hunky Dory Japan Import Edition 11Tracks EMI TOCP-53526 Inlays USD $84.04 Buy It Now 6 days
David Bowie, Hunky Dory Album, SF 8244 LP, Vinyl Record USD $30.13 Buy It Now 6 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory SEALED CD Japanese Import Mini LP Wallet RARE USD $19.99 Buy It Now 6 days
David Bowie - Hunky Dory Vinyl LP German 1st Press Laminated Teldec EX+/EX USD $125.53 Buy It Now 6 days
1971 1 x paper INSERT - DAVID BOWIE HUNKY DORY variations USD $10.03 Buy It Now 6 days
David Bowie-Hunky dory LP 1971 orange label 2E/3E matrix USD $3.14 [1 bids]
6 days
David Bowie Hunky Dory UK Sleeve Canadian Disc RCA Victor SF8244 Classic Rock USD $37.65 Buy It Now 6 days
DAVID BOWIE+Hunky Dory+ORIGINAL VINYL LP SLV+QUALITY FRAMED+EXPRESS GLOBAL SHIP USD $125.48 Buy It Now 7 days
DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory CLASSIC CD Album TOP QUALITY FRAMED+EXPRESS GLOBAL SHIP USD $50.16 Buy It Now 7 days
David Bowie LP - Hunky Dory. 2E / 3T. Immaculate Playing Order. USD $11.93 [0 bids]
7 days
NEW & Sealed David Bowie" Hunky Dory" LP 180-Gram Vinyl Record (2016) USD $22.98 Buy It Now 7 days

More places to buy DAVID BOWIE music online Buy DAVID BOWIE & Prog Rock Digital Music online:

DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory ratings distribution


4.15
(404 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(40%)
40%
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(43%)
43%
Good, but non-essential (13%)
13%
Collectors/fans only (3%)
3%
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)
1%

DAVID BOWIE Hunky Dory reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars IS THERE LIFE ON MARS ?

In 1971, the relation with Philips are at their lows and De Fries negotiated a three album contact with RCA. Just over two months later, "Hunky Dory" was released.

In some sort, it is a come back to a more folkish sound after the hard-rocking "The Man Who Sold The World". A much "lighter" album with delicate arrangements.

Do notice the very good piano work. From Mr. Rick Wakeman. He already played on David's second album. David said once that he would have liked to integrate Rick as a full-time member but Rick will opt for "Yes". I can't really imagine Rick on stage during the Ziggy tour. Might have been funny though.

There are some jewels on this album. Even if "Changes" won't be a huge commercial success as a single, the chorus has become very famous and sooooooo catchy. A song which might sound as innocent, is in fact again using the theme of a super race who will dominate the world (David already used these Nietzsche theme in "The Supermen" on "The Man.").

He also reflects this in the lyrics of "Quicksand": "I'm not a prophet or a stone age man. Just a mortal with the potential of a superman". Maybe a bit pretentious though.

But THE highlight is of course "Life On Mars?". A superb and melancholic rock ballad. Again, Rick is just great on the piano and the chorus part is probably the most melodic one David has ever written. A fantastic moment of music.

David is also writing three songs deeply inspired by an important source of inspiration: "Andy Warhol", "Song For Bob Dylan" and "Queen Bitch".

Even if the first one is a bit boring, the lyrics are rather premonitory of what will take place a little later (Ziggy). In respect with the second one, David is a great admirer of Bob Dylan and at the time the man was rather scarce on stage. Fans were urging for a come back and David decided to give it a push with this song. A nice homage actually:

"Oh, hear this Robert Zimmerman, I wrote a song for you. About a strange young man called Dylan. With a voice like sand and glue. His words of truthful vengeance. They could pin us to the floor".

"Queen Bitch" is of course dedicated to Lou Reed and his gloomy world. Great riff ("Sweet Jane" where are you?), approaching vocals at times and the mood which is so Lou Reed. Another highlight (the fourth or fifth one).

David is referring to his half-brother Terry (at least it is supposed so because he was never explicit about it). He did it already with "All The Mad Men". A touching acoustic song.

This album is completely different from "The Man.". More intimate, less rocking which might sound as a paradox since the whole Spiders gang is now in place (Bolder replaced Visconti in the band).

The legend is on its way. The explosion is near. Four stars.

Review by Seyo
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This album is a masterpiece of songwriting if not of production. Two obvious hits (Changes and Life on Mars) are set within the eclectic mix of post-Hippie psychedelia, acoustic acid-folk musings, plain hard rocking with distinguished guitar riffs by Mick Ronson, British music-hall dramatic tunes and glam-rock visuals. Rick Wakeman's piano is mostly the leading instrument and it provides a very artistic sensation invoking classical art of the past. Bowie has here completely developed his unique songwriting style and performance that would be used as a basis on his subsequent works. A must in any decent music collection!

PERSONAL RATING: 4,5/5

P.A. RATING: 5/5

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars It is amazing to think Rick Wakeman collaborated with so many great artists like Bowie and even Strawbs but Hunky Dory has to be one of David Bowie's finest albums. The first album released through RCA and it has some of his finest most notorious tracks like the opener Changes and the masterful Life On Mars.

Great play on Andy Warhol, the challenge to the great Bob Dylan on Song To Bob Dylan. Noticeable contributions also from Trevor Bolder on bass. Tis a small world this progressive world. Hunk Dory is a must have for any new David Bowie enthusiasts. Any establish Bowie collector will already have this near the top of the pile. Thoroughly entertaining.

Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Eclectic Prog Team
2 stars Lots of okay jazzy country or countrified jazz and the occasional folk-sounding tune populate this album. In all, it teeters on the generic, and is sometimes downright hokey. If anything, the album starts out highly enjoyably and ends fantastically, but most of what's sandwiched in between is of very little interest.

"Changes" From its funky jazz introduction to its melodic verses over major and minor-seventh chords, this short ditty is a fun one, and contains one of Bowie's best vocal performances. This staple of classic rock radio remains one of my favorite songs from him.

"Oh! You Pretty Things" Hammered-out piano chords and Bowie's thin but unmistakable voice make up this second song, and it's particularly rewarding when it explodes into an enjoyable fullness. The chorus has almost the same progression as the one from "Changes."

"Eight Line Poem" Over sparse piano and twangy guitar, Bowie sings in an exaggerated way- kind of an uncomfortable bore, really.

"Life on Mars?" Not only does the title give this impression, but the music of this sounds like a precursor to the upcoming album, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. It has a great refrain, with swirling strings and a fabulous piano.

"Kooks" Something of a bouncy honky-tonk song, this one is cute and a little fun, but that's about it.

"Quicksand" This song is more of a folk tune, with heavy-handed acoustic guitar and whiny vocals.

"Fill Your Heart" One of Bowie's most saccharinely happy songs, this one makes good use of the peppy strings and saxophone.

"Andy Warhol" This track has strange electronic noises and some talking and laughing before the song proper starts. Musically, it's the most forceful of the acoustic tracks, but the vocal melodies bog the piece down. It eventually loses its way and just falls apart.

"Song for Bob Dylan" Bowie does an okay job emulating Bob Dylan's lazy vocal inflections, although the highlight of this little tribute is the solid electric guitar lead.

"Queen Bitch" The only song on the album I would consider a proper rock song, this has a strong electric guitar riff and a flamboyant air that rather serves as a herald of Bowie's well-known glam rock style.

"The Bewlay Brothers" The final song is a steady work with a dramatic build. While retaining the rustic flavor, this one has a bit of an exotic feel in places. This rather generic album ends magnificently, with one of Bowie's most creative offerings.

Review by tarkus1980
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Wow, where did this come from? Unless I'm missing an obvious candidate, this would have to have been the biggest Breakthrough Album For Somebody Who Kept Showing Promise But Couldn't Quite Put It All Together since Face to Face, right? On this album, David left rambling heavy rock behind him and instead opted for an album of well- crafted, quirky pop songs, and the effort was so successful that it's not clear why he didn't do this sooner or make any more albums similar to this. It gets weaker in the second half, but not tremendously so, and it's one his most solid collections of songs ever.

The first half, of course, contains two of his biggest hit singles ever, and they're both top- notch as far as Bowie goes. "Changes" is a little rambling in the verses, but the instrumental breaks and the chorus are as interesting as can be, almost reminding me of prime Elton John but retaining a brand of intrigue that's definitely unique to Bowie. "Life On Mars?" somehow didn't grab me much the first couple of times, as it struck me as just an unremarkable over-orchestrated ballad; now, I'd have to rate it as one of the greatest over- orchestrated ballads I've ever heard. The lyrics, about wanting to lose yourself in a fantasy world because the real world is dull and uninteresting, are phenomenal, and Bowie belts them with passion over a combination of a good orchestral arrangement and great Rick Wakeman piano lines. Who'd have thought such an interesting combination of bizarre social commentary and catchiness could have come from a "My Way" parody?

The first half, aside from the semi-fillerish, kinda lazyish country of "Eight Line Poem," also contains three songs that are among my favorite Bowie pop songs. "Oh! You Pretty Things" is upbeat piano pop of the highest caliber, both in the verses (which strangely, though not enough for me to claim any sort of ripoff, remind me of Procol Harum; I keep getting "The Milk of Human Kindness" going in my head when I listen to this) and the ridiculous chorus, which basically turns the track into a sexually ambiguous Paul McCartney song. "Kooks" might be intended as a relatively slight track, intended for his son, but it strikes me as a nice ode to a warm friendship, and I've always enjoyed it. "Quicksand" doesn't have an especially strong melody, but it gets by on atmosphere and, shockingly, emotional power; the line, "And I ain't got the power anymore" has to be one of the most emotionally punchy moments in his whole catalogue.

As mentioned, the second half isn't quite as fantastic as the first, but it's still decent. "Fill Your Heart" is a silly cover with singing that might generously qualify as mediocre, and not one I especially look forward to hearing. Then comes a three-song "tribute" portion that strikes me as kinda bizarre; "Andy Warhol" starts with a seemingly random synth sequence played over conversation between Bowie and the producer about how to pronounce his name, but at least it turns into a mildly interesting up-tempo, downbeat acoustic number. It kinda strikes me as a stylistic leftover from Space Oddity; the good half, I mean. "Song for Bob Dylan" has some nice electric guitar licks, but aside from the namechecks, I'm not really sure what it has to do with Dylan; the lyrics certainly don't seem especially influenced by Dylan, aside from maybe a couple of lines in the chorus. Fortunately, "Queen Bitch" (a clear Velvet Underground/Lou Reed tribute) is top-notch, laying out all of the glam-rock elements that David would draw upon for the next couple of years, and it can compete with the best material from those albums.

The album ends on a somewhat deceptive note with "The Bewlay Brothers," but it's not a bad note. David returns to acoustic singer-songwriter mode, and the climactic moments, from when those painful (in a good way) guitar noises pop up, through the "... we were so turned on" lines, are enough to make the song worthwhile. The "main" melody isn't especially impressive, and I haven't the slightest idea what the lyrics are about (or if they're supposed to have meaning), but the song is a success no matter what.

So hats off to David Bowie! This wasn't quite his commerical breakthrough (it still took Ziggy to get him over the hump), but it's his artistic breakthrough, and history has rightly treated this well. I'd actually consider recommending getting this one first; it's not representative of his overall sound, but then again, no Bowie album is representative of his overall sound, so you might as well start with something that relies solely on musical merit, if you get me.

Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
5 stars Hunky Dory was my first David Bowie album and a love at first sight began to develop!

Even though I've later on developed a bigger crush with other Bowie albums, this release will always keep the honorary position of being the one that started it all. Side one is just flawless, featuring such well established classics like Changes, Oh! You Pretty Things and Life On Mars?. Unlike The Man Who Sold The World, which showed that Bowie was still struggling to find a direction, Hunky Dory feels like a very competent album that shows off all the best sides of the artist's repertoire and leaves very little room for improvement. This type of an overnight transformation is highly unusually and primerally shows the raw talent that David Bowie had in him. This talent would eventually be put to even greater use after the whole Ziggy Stardust craze died down and people began to acknowledge Bowie for his versatile artistry.

Side two of Hunky Dory might not be as strong as the first but I honestly didn't care much about it back in the day. This concern has only became apparent to me in the last few years where I started to question this album's high status in my collection. The two last songs, titled Queen Bitch and The Bewlay Brothers, are just not on par with everything that comes before them. But after revisiting Hunky Dory earlier today I was once again convinced that my love for this release is just as strong as ever and therefore there is no way that I'll back down from awarding it the highest honor of the essential rating!

Even if you dismiss this review as just another crazy fan rant, I still would recommend that you'll at least give Hunky Dory a visit since it definitely needs to be heard by more people. It might not be Bowie's artistic peak in terms of Art Rock but musically this is easily among his best performances both as a composer and performer.

***** star songs: Changes (3:34) Oh! You Pretty Things (3:12) Eight Line Poem (2:53) Life On Mars? (3:49) Kooks (2:49) Fill Your Heart (3:07) Andy Warhol (3:53)

**** star songs: Quicksand (5:04) Song For Bob Dylan (4:12) Queen Bitch (3:14) The Bewlay Brothers (5:22)

Review by thehallway
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars As with many people, this is my first Bowie purchase and an excellent introduction to the man's chameleonic work. It delivers a few fantastic songs, as one might expect, but then surprises you with even more.

Hunky Dory sees David in a period of rising stardom, itself lending to his successes with the massive hit 'Changes', a catchy pop number driven by Rick Wakeman's piano (but more on him later). The album also yielded what is arguably one of Bowie's best songs, in fact, arguably one of pop music's best songs. I am of course referring to 'Life on Mars', the incredibly emotional dali-esque observation, containing enough super- chords to make one's eyes water; also accentuated by Rick's piano flurrying and the thick string arrangements of Mr Mick Ronson. But the music hidden beneath these mammoth singles survives on in a much more intimate way.

From rocky standards such as 'Song for Bob Dylan' and 'Queen Bitch', bluesy ballads like 'Eight Line Poem' and 'The Bewlay Brothers', and sing-along acoustic ditties such as 'Fill Your Heart', 'Andy Warhol' and 'Kooks', the album is varied but not what I would describe as diverse, because the instrumentation and vocals are very consistent. Consistently good! One of the highlights for me is 'Oh! You Pretty Things', with its odd piano verses and Beatlesy chorus. This song would have been as equally a successful single as 'Changes'. Another honourable mention must be paid to 'Quicksand', which is almost a less epic alternative to 'Life on Mars', clarifying David Bowie's talent at writing beautiful chord sequences.

All I can say about this gem is that, while its singles have received their due share of public adoration, its other tracks seem to have been overlooked by the masses (or perhaps by David himself). I am forcing myself to avoid the five-stars because of what will come, but Hunky Dory almost deserves five for 'Life on Mars' alone. Adhering to the Prog Archives descriptors though, this is an excellent addition to any collection. Not essential, but not to be missed; it's good!

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars The birth of Bowie's glam era sees all the different strands of his past efforts coming together to finally create an album which would mould and shape fashions to come rather than reflecting the fashions of the time. A pitch-perfect compromise between the rock and roll bravado of The Man Who Sold the World with the gentler folk and psych-influenced work from the first two albums, it's the most confident and self-assured of Bowie's pre-Ziggy album releases.

Just about every idea developed on the previous three albums is revisited here and perfected, in performances that blow Bowie's previous efforts away completely. The debut album, for example, never quite managed to include any quirky novelty songs even remotely as charming as Kooks, which wins me over every time despite being the silliest song on the album. (And despite having a "couple of kooks" for parents, Duncan Jones - previously known as Zowie Bowie - seems to have done pretty well for himself as an imaginative and critically acclaimed director.) Quicksand is a better slice of mystical New Age folk than anything on Space Oddity. And The Supermen and The Wild-Eyed Boy From Freecloud seem to have their successors in the subjects of Oh You Pretty Things.

As well as some iconic, top-notch rock songs - including opening track Changes, and the triumphant Velvet Underground tribute Queen Bitch - the album includes just enough of an art rock vibe to remain interesting to prog fans. As well as the prog folkish Quicksand, there's the gorgeous Life On Mars, which includes tasteful string arrangements and a slice of Mellotron from the enormously talented Mick Ronson and a breathtakingly beautiful piano performance from Rick Wakeman, who would turn down an invitation to be a Spider From Mars after this album in order to take on his much-celebrated first tour of duty in Yes.

It's not full-on prog, of course... but then again, if it were it would be in one of the prog categories, and not "prog-related". By the standards of this field, it's an absolute gem, and Bowie's first five-star masterpiece.

Review by Matti
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars To many, this is the first masterpiece album from Bowie. Maybe it's not in the masterpiece category for me, but I do like this one a lot, and it's much better than the preceeding The Man Who Sold The World, or the uneven Space Oddity. This includes well known songs 'Changes' and 'Life On Mars?', both among his greatest. This album is clearly in the singer-songwriter genre, flirting with various styles, but not much harder rock. I like the way Mick Ronson's guitar steps back a little and gives more room to Rick Wakeman's cabaret-style piano playing or other sophisticated arrangements. Bowie plays sax himself, by the way.

He had done dancehall-kind of music before, here he returns to it with 'Kooks' and 'Fill Your Heart'. 'Song For Bob Dylan' and 'Bewlay Brothers' are approaching folk genre. Besides Robert Zimmermann, also another American icon, Andy Warhol, is tackled here.

This album is good-natured, charming and very well produced. It may have some songs that are nothing special, and of course it's up to you (what kind of Bowie you prefer) how much you'll enjoy Hunky Dory. But a classic, no doubt.

Review by Prog Leviathan
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars This early work by Bowie has irresistible charm and depth, sticking to that sort of energetic mid-tempo pop-rock that appeals to pretty much everyone. Not yet the "glam rocker," Bowie here has crafted some handsomely arranged rock n' roll that wraps up a variety of styles and tones - from the boogie-woogie, to folk, to western, to classical, and back to rock n' roll again. It's a great listen, often lush and always emotive.

A handful of standouts, like the immensely likable "Changes," intricately composed "Life on Mars?", and experimental "Andy Warhol," grab one's attention. The other songs, while offering many points of interest for the careful listener, do drift somewhat into the background of acoustic and string textures. For me, the impression is that Hunky Dory would make excellent dinner-party music; inoffensive in its mild tone but also fun for its genuine charm. There's a timelessness here and in Bowie's performance. Bowie's voice and lyrics are of course excellent, as is the songwriting in general. Instrumental work is fine; not much to laud but effective overall.

Recommended but not essential. Hunky Dory is great if you're interested in Bowie the musician, or for thoughtful pop-rock that proves that the '70's really are the time to go for creative and genuine music.

Songwriting: 4 - Instrumental Performances: 3 - Lyrics/Vocals: 4 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

Latest members reviews

5 stars Listening to Hunky Dory with a packet of Hunky Dory Salt & Malt Vinegar crisps. Pretty great combination. This album in many ways was a slight breakthrough for Bowie. After 3 albums which failed to breakthrough to any real markets or niches, Bowie released this album, and wouldn't you know ... (read more)

Report this review (#1005664) | Posted by arcane-beautiful | Friday, July 26, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Hunky Dory is arguably David Bowie's first classic album. It's unique yet familiar simultaneously, featuring some of his most well-known tracks, as well as a platter of lesser-known pop gems. Bowie sounds a little whimsical and generally less intense than his Ziggy Stardust and Thin White Duke p ... (read more)

Report this review (#933239) | Posted by lukatherfan | Wednesday, March 20, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Rating: 10/10 Definitively David Bowie's career masterpiece. In the decade in which he set up a whole new wave in different terms -on how intimate and shameless songwriting could get; how to eventually fashion and look, ergo "glam" could be a complement to music, ergo "glam rock"; and fi ... (read more)

Report this review (#459198) | Posted by Mattiias | Saturday, June 11, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is one where Bowie started to grow into a huge icon. "Changes" kicks it all off with its theatrical tone, focusing on David's constant artistic reinvention. It's very familiar but quite possibly the most sophisticated pop song ever created. Overall, "Hunky Dory" covers many bases, from folk ... (read more)

Report this review (#434042) | Posted by Frankie Flowers | Friday, April 15, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is the start of the Bowie everyone knows and loves, the glam pop/rock era. Now while not really prog during this time there was always a great sence of avant guard and expirimentation on most of David Bowie's works, and this is no different. The first five songs on this album i think is teri ... (read more)

Report this review (#283109) | Posted by FarBeyondProg | Saturday, May 22, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I rememer when I bought this album in 1973, 12 years old. The family was on its way to the holiday camp and we kids brought our "old" record player along. We only had a dozen of records, so a new arrival was something special. Some albums are strange. I´ve probably heard "Hunky Dory" more than ... (read more)

Report this review (#250294) | Posted by Dr Pripp | Friday, November 13, 2009 | Review Permanlink

3 stars David Bowie's first pop record. While "the man who sold the world" and "A space oddity" are a mix of psychedelic/experimental music and (hard)rock this record is much more pop orientated. Space oddity did bring up a good radiohit but the record didn't deliver many more songs which were "radio fri ... (read more)

Report this review (#185555) | Posted by the philosopher | Tuesday, October 14, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This is, quite simply, everything that I love about music. It's dramatic, depressing, energetic, epic, satirical, sexy and PROGRESSIVE! It is hard to pin down the style and genre that this album encompases, but needless to say, the heavy guitars have been left far behind. It could be described a ... (read more)

Report this review (#174928) | Posted by burtonrulez | Monday, June 23, 2008 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of DAVID BOWIE "Hunky Dory"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives