As founder and half of the songwriting engine that drove the mighty Hüsker Dü, to his maverick solo work, (has there ever been a portrait of a breakup as evocative yet anthemic as “2541″?) Grant Hart has cut a singular path across the last three decades of music. It is with great confidence that we say he has made an album to rival his greatest achievements. A double album based on John Milton’s epic “Paradise Lost”, Hart distills its essence into pop and rock concoctions that nimbly flit through the history of 20th century music from Irving Berlin and David Bowie to… Hüsker Dü, even. Ambition is the topic and Hell is the location for this project that is ambitious as Hell. Does he pull it off? We say yes!
While visiting James Grauerholz, former friend and secretary for William S. Burroughs, James showed Grant an unpublished manuscript for Lost Paradise, William’s science fiction story which portrays the fallen angels as men from distant planets and God as none other than fellow Missourian Harry S. Truman. James and Grant discussed adding music to William’s story much in the same way that Tom Waits and William conspired to turn the German folk tale Die Freischütz into The Black Rider as staged by Robert Wilson.
As a double album of two halves, we wanted to show both the light and the dark of the album in its initial introduction, so we are offering two tracks for preview. “Is The Sky the Limit?” is a melancholy song of the aftermath of rejection built upon the eerie and lonely sound of Sputnik 1. To counterbalance this somber paen, “Letting Me Out” follows in all its propulsive Buddy Holly glory as the Artist formerly known as Lucifer offers up his cunning business proposition to populate the netherworld.
STARMAN 45 RELEASED 41 YEARS AGO TODAY. “So I picked on you-oo-oo…” Well, if life begins at forty, Starman is one year old today. Released this day in 1972, it still sounds as good now as it did way back then. The proof is here.
From my Kickstarter exclusive “Vanderslice Plays Diamond Dogs”. Diamond Dogs is a beast: it’s the most Bowie of all his records I think. He plays the most instruments on this record by far. Mick Ronson and the early 70s supporting players are gone. Bowie takes care of all guitars and plays a LOT of keys and sax. The drugs were epic. I tried to make the album weirder. That was very hard. For “Diamanthunde” I cut lyrics, changed chords, and completely restructured the song. I also brought in Avi from Avi Buffalo to play fragmented guitar. I’m a Bowie obsessive and Diamond Dogs has always fascinated me. It’s often overlooked among fans and it’s very hard to place in his 70s output. I think it’s a drugged out masterpiece, an abandoned Orwellian concept album that has the most playing Bowie ever did on one of his records. The best moments on this record are heartbreaking. I was not deferent to Bowie: For “A Better Whirlpool”, I translated lyrics into German, chopped verses, moved bridges, changed chords, and otherwise ran roughshod over this beast.
God Bless The Girl is the Japanese only Blu-spec disc release bonus track (track number 18) from the new David Bowie album The Next Day.
[Dedicated to H.K. in Tokyo, Japan]
“The Prettiest Star” is a song by David Bowie, originally released as a single in 1970. Bowie had recently re-recorded an old Deram track, “London Bye Ta Ta”, intended as a follow-up single to “Space Oddity” in early 1970. However, the same sessions had also spawned a new composition named “The Prettiest Star”. Bowie wrote it for Angela Barnett, reputedly playing it down the telephone as part of his proposal to her. He also chose it as his next single, to the displeasure of manager Kenneth Pitt, who favoured “London Bye Ta Ta”. The track featured Marc Bolan on guitar, with whom Bowie would spend the next few years as a rival for the crown of the king of glam rock. Producer Tony Visconti, who brought the two aspiring pop stars together in the studio, recalled that the session went well until the end when Bolan’s wife June remarked to Bowie, “Marc is too good for you, to be playing on this record!” Despite receiving good notices, the single reportedly sold less than 800 copies, a major disappointment on the back of the success of “Space Oddity”. In 1973, a more glam-influenced version was recorded and released on the album Aladdin Sane, with Mick Ronson recreating Bolan’s original guitar part almost note-for-note.
Andreas Schroeder recorded a cover version of David Bowies ‘Heroes’ at Hansa Studios in November. The new single ‘Helden’ will hit the road very soon – March 15 is digital release at Glitterhouse Records, and additional there will be a limited 7″ vinyl edition! Exciting …
Lyrics and music by Bowie, David / Eno, Brian
Vocals and Harmonium: Andrea Schroeder
Violin: Catherine Graindorge
Guitars: Jesper Lehmkuhl
Bass: Dave Allen
Drums: Chris Hughes
Produced by Chris Eckman
Engineered by David Hefti
Recorded Nov 2012 at Hansa Studios, Berlin
Mixing: Chris Eckman at Studio Zuma
Mastering: Milan Cimfe at Sono Recording Studios
Coming out March 15, 2013 at Glitterhouse Records.
27.03.2013 Hamburg Knust
30.03.2013 Meidelstetten Adler
02.04.2013 Köln Studio 672
03.04.2013 Frankfurt Das Bett
04.04.2013 München Milla Club
05.04.2013 Berlin Frannz
09.04.2013 Bonn Pantheon
10.04.2013 Nürnberg Künstlerhaus
12.04.2013 Stuttgart Laboratorium
17.04.2013 Leipzig Moritzbastei
18.04.2013 Hannover Lux
New single to be released for Record Store Day. In celebration of Record Store Day 2013, Columbia Records will release a 7″ vinyl single featuring an unreleased demo of “Wigwam” backed with a previously unreleased recording of “Thirsty Boots” from the forthcoming Bootleg Series Vol. 10. Pick up your copy on Saturday, April 20, at participating independent record stores. For a complete list, visit http://www.recordstoreday.com/Venues. Read more: http://www.bobdylan.com/