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Heathen Enhanced

4.3 out of 5 stars 171 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Enhanced, June 11, 2002
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

David Bowie ~ Heathen

Heathen is, in essence, the first "traditional" Bowie album worthy of kudos in years, as it successfully reunites Bowie with producer Tony Visconti, the man at the controls during Bowie's Berlin period. Heathen finds rock's greatest chameleon once again remolding his past, advancing to new vistas by moving up that metaphorical hill backward. Even more gratifying is the universally high quality of the songwriting craftsmanship on offer, where even a ditty as frivolous as "Everyone Says 'Hi'" ("Don't stay in a sad place where they don't care how you are") hits the mark. For heavyweights who like their Bowie with furrowed-brow, the monastic aura of opener "Sunday" sounds like a post-rock Enigma covering Nico's interpretation of Tim Hardin's "Eulogy to Lenny Bruce," whilst the strident savagery evidenced on an apt cover of the Pixies' "Cactus" disposes with Frank Black's hound-dog yelp and reasserts the melody without undermining the original's obsessional score. Tin Machine ought to have sounded like this. Watch out, too, for the Robert Fripp-impersonating flamethrowing of Pete Townshend on "Slow Burn" and the guitar of the Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl lending a slacker swagger to a cover of Neil Young's "I've Been Waiting for You" (again, much better than Tin Machine's live version). Heathen proves that Bowie's still got it. All of it. And in abundance. Awaken all ye nonbelievers. --Kevin Maidment

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Sunday
  2. Cactus
  3. Slip Away
  4. Slow Burn
  5. Afraid
  6. I've Been Waiting For You
  7. I Would Be Your Slave
  8. I Took A Trip On A Gemini Spaceship
  9. 5:15 The Angels Have Gone
  10. Everyone Says 'Hi'
  11. A Better Future
  12. Heathen (The Rays)

Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 11, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Enhanced
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B000065V1V
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (171 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,095 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
"Heathen" is an all-around amazing album. But I will say that if you only like one or two of David Bowie's albums, and aren't really a Bowie fan, then you probably won't like it, since this album is sort of quintessential Bowie. (One consequence of Bowie's huge range of musical styles is that certain albums which are different from everything else he's done--such as "Outside"--have picked up some fans who are only fans of that album and disparage all his other work.)
Most actual Bowie fans will adore this album, since it's a mixture of many of his older sounds (for example, "Slip Away" sounds almost like a sequel to"Life on Mars"), so it feels very familiar, while having a completely new sound as well. The cover songs are fantastic (one little note about the covers: I think people might appreciate the rather goofy song "Gemini Spacecraft" better if they heard the even goofier original version by Legendary Stardust Cowboy... this song is NOT meant to be taken seriously!!). However, I think Bowie's own songs are the best on the album. "I Would Be Your Slave" and "5:15 the Angels Have Gone" are stunningly beautiful-- they are two of my favorite Bowie songs ever, which is saying a lot. My other favorite songs on the album are "Afraid", "Everyone Says Hi" and "Heathen (the Rays)". "Sunday" has been the the most challenging song for me; it's slow and meanders in an almost classical-music kind of way, and bored me a little at first, but I love it now. There is no bad song on the album, and every song is completely different, so there is something for everyone (everyone who is a Bowie fan anyway), or for any mood you find yourself in.
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Format: Audio CD
While I have been impressed and inspired by Bowie for years, I have to admit that I can't truly consider myself a *huge* fan because I only have several of his albums - most being from the last ten years (_Outside_, _Earthling_, _Reality_, etc.). His work from the 60s, 70s, and 80s I know primarily from a best-of collection, radio, and MTV/VH1. That said, _Heathen_ blew me away when I first heard it.
I can't think of another artist that has been around as long as Bowie that keeps writing and recording new material that sounds fresh, energetic, and urgent. _Heathen_ contains some chilling songs - songs that are so emotional and hit you in such a place inside that you have to listen to them over and over again. When he sings: "There's fear overhead, there's fear overground..." and "But who are we/So small in times such as these," one cannot help but think that these lyrics relate to 9/11. However, Bowie has stated that the material for _Heathen_ was written before 9/11 - which actually makes the lyrics throughout the album even more bonechilling. On "Better Future" he sings: "Please don't tear this world asunder/Please take back this fear we're under/I demand a better future." There are beautiful lyrics like these throughout _Heathen_, as well as very good covers of "Cactus" and Neil Young's "I've Been Waiting For You." My favorite song on the album is "Everyone Says 'Hi'" - just about as perfect as a little pop song can get. With a simple arrangement, the song is a beautiful sentiment with the line that we should all make it a point to remember: "Don't stay in a sad place where they don't care how you are.
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Format: Audio CD
Amazon doesn't mention that this '07 Japan mini-sleeve edition carries a bonus disc containing some fabulous non-album tracks & remixes. Here is the track list for the bonus disc:

13. Sunday MOBY REMIX
14. A Better Future REMIX BY AIR
15. Conversation Piece
16. Panic In Detroit
17. Wood Jackson
18. When The Boys Come Marching Home
19. Baby Loves That Way
20. You've Got A Habit Of Leaving
21. Safe
22. Shadow Man

The audio on the main disc is the same '04 remaster. However, the mastering on the bonus disc is notably improved over many of the original singles' audio. Presumably, this is the same edition as the 2004 2CD jewel box re-release.


Have you ever lamented the loss of one of the 20th Century's great art forms, the 12" vinyl LP jacket? Then "mini-LP-sleeve" CD's may be for you.

Mini-sleeve CDs are manufactured in Japan under license. The disc is packaged inside a 135MM X 135MM cardboard precision-miniature replica of the original classic vinyl-LP album. Also, anything contained in the original LP, such as gatefolds, booklets, lyric sheets, posters, printed LP sleeves, stickers, embosses, special LP cover paper/inks/textures and/or die cuts, are precisely replicated and included. An English-language lyric sheet is always included, even if the original LP did not have printed lyrics.

Then, there's the sonic quality: Often (but not always), mini-sleeves have dedicated remastering (20-Bit, 24-Bit, DSD, K2/K2HD, and/or HDCD), and can often (but not always) be superior to the audio on the same title anywhere else in the world. There also may be bonus tracks unavailable elsewhere.
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5 Comments 29 of 32 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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