Bowie drags his fans back to the golden years
First Night David Bowie Astoria London
Friday 03 December 1999
Not that he needs to worry. His Internet obsession is well documented, yet more revolutionary has been his success in floating himself as a corporate entity. Yes, you too can own a piece of David Bowie. This may yet prove to be the second most influential action of his long and successful career, after his popularisation of that short at the sides, long on top hair style beloved by guests on The Jerry Springer Show.
Tonight's show, in this relatively small venue, sees this fifty-something apparently comfortable with himself and his back catalogue. He might be dressed like a chat show presenter in a fetching pink V-neck jumper and a pair of tight black flares, but the voice and the charm are intact. An opening "Life On Mars" to piano accompaniment provided by Seventies collaborator Mike Garson, is greeted with excited yelps. The band appear and the set flips between eras, mercifully leaving out most of the Eighties and the Tin Machine period. He even performs his first ever single as David Bowie - 1966's "Can't Help Thinking About Me". It's not great but it's fun to hear where he sprang from.
His backing musicians are a clean-cut bunch yet they prove capable of handling classics such as "China Girl" and the mechanical funk of "Stay", possibly one of the most coked-up tracks ever recorded. And although Hours may not be the new Hunky Dory "Seven" is lovely enough to deserve the comparison. The killer combination of "Changes" and glam rock's greatest moment "Rebel Rebel" conclude the set, the latter proving it costs a lot of cash to make a snare drum sound that cheap.
Bowie might be past his best work, but this enjoyable rifling through his less frequently presented back pages was surprisingly good fun.
- 2 Friends 20th anniversary: Alison Jackson photographs reunited cast
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 5 Free U2 album: How the most generous giveaway in music history turned into a PR disaster
Scottish independence: Despite defeat history may still point to Alex Salmond as the victor
Scottish independence referendum: Frankie Boyle reacts to nation's 'No' vote - 'To be fair, I've always hated Scotland'
Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Scottish referendum: Police struggle to control Unionist rally in Glasgow's George Square
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
£75 - £90 per day + negotiable: Randstad Education Group: Are you a cover supe...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...
£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...