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David Bowie - This Is Not America (with Pat Metheny Group) CD (album) cover

THIS IS NOT AMERICA (WITH PAT METHENY GROUP)

David Bowie

 

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4.00 | 1 ratings

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Matti
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Being deeply disappointed at the uncertain situation of the US presidential election -- the world is at the risk of seeing that disgusting, hate-spreading, lying idiot staying in power and suffering the global results -- this song started to play in my mind this morning.

Naturally this collaborative single could just as well have been placed in the discography of PAT METHENY, whose Group made the soundtrack for John Schlesinger's spy drama "The Falcon and the Snowman" (1985). Based on the 1979 book by Robert Lindsey, it tells the true story of two young American men (acted by Timothy Hutton and Sean Penn), who sold US security secrets to the Soviet Union. I saw the film as a teenager and liked it. It was years later I found Pat Metheny, one of my biggest jazz/fusion favourites, and sadly I have no memories of the music on that movie.

The theme song finely sung by David Bowie has been among my favourite post-70's Bowie songs. It is included as a bonus track on the 1995 remaster of Tonight (1984), and it's contained on some of his compilations such as Best of Bowie (2002) and 3-cd Nothing Has Changed (2014). The cool, urban and moody soundscape created by Pat Metheny Group and Bowie's vocals with his interesting lyrics function brilliantly together. I also enjoy the cover by Alice, the Italian pop singer, although the original is clearly better.

Up till now I had never heard the instrumental version (the single's B side). Had I heard it without knowing the vocal version, I probably would appreciate it more, as an elegantly understated and atmospheric Pat Metheny piece, but can't help feeling that something crucial is missing -- the vocals. They simply make it whole.

Matti | 4/5 |

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