Wednesday, March 12, 2008

David Bowie - Blue Jean

(EMI, 1984)

Awful. AWFUL. Like Let’s Dance, but worse. Not only is a shockingly complacent Bowie sticking with that sterile saxes-n-synths sound, his pop songwriting has also seriously nosedived on the wannabe-hit “Blue Jean”; when a braindead failure like this is your album’s lead single, there’s trouble afoot. “Dancing With the Big Boys” sinks even lower, with nadir-scraping lyrics and jaw-dropping bloat (female backing vocals? Silly “deep voice” effect?! STOP IT PLEASE.). This stuff is so forgettable and without merit that it manages to defy lengthy comment. Grasping for very, very small comforts, at least we can be happy that the drums on “Blue Jean” sound halfway natural. Uh… congrats?

1 comment:

Donald Brown said...

This album I'm divided on. Everything I hate about the '80s is there and yet... Somehow there's a kind of texture to the sound that, in the right mood, pleases me. It's that synth-sax mix you mention. I haven't heard the album start to finish in a long time, but "Loving the Alien" and his take on the song Iggy covered, "Don't Look Down" . . . and he covers "God Only Knows." You should probably not go there, but I like it.

But this is where Bowie and I part ways -- I didn't buy another of his albums until 2002's "heathen," though "...hours" (1999) is pretty good, as I recall.