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Diamond Dogs Original recording remastered

4.6 out of 5 stars 203 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, September 28, 1999
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

David BOWIE Diamond Dogs CD

Amazon.com

George Orwell's classic tale of totalitarianism, 1984, was the inspiration for a project that David Bowie hoped would further solidify his standing as a rock visionary. Bowie was a natural artist to helm a musical companion to Orwell's allegory, since his own music exhibits an innate alienation. The concept ultimately broke down, but the music didn't. "Rebel Rebel" has become a rock staple, while "Sweet Thing," "Candidate," and the forthright yet experimental title track (Bowie as puppet master) offer additional highlights. Still, despite such benchmarks and its conceptual flaws, Diamond Dogs is best listened to as a thematic collection. --Rob O'Connor
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 28, 1999)
  • Original Release Date: 1974
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Virgin
  • ASIN: B00001OH7S
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (203 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,351 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

By Tim Brough VINE VOICE on August 2, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Those four words lead off the album that scared the tar outta me as a 14 year old. Even more than my well worn Black Sabbath albums. Sabbath was scary, but a lot of that came from the fact that they were so darn heavy and demonic. But on "Diamond Dogs," David Bowie just made everything musically bone rattling, insane and unsettling. Visualizing Hunger City and the hordes of jeweled and fur clad "peoploids" on the prowl was akin to something out of a George Romero movie. I was too young to understand what a rock and roll musical would sound like, all I knew was "We Are The Dead" and "Chant Of The Ever Circling Skeletal Family" captured my attention like no other save for Alice Cooper.

No other album or artist has done that for me since. Marylyn Manson? Megadeth? Slayer? Mindless poseurs all after the theatrics of "Sweet Thing/Candidate." Of course I couldn't know it at the time, but Bowie was beginning to bridge the gap between the Ziggy character (in retrospect, it seems like this was the album where Ziggy is at last buried forever) and the soon to emerge Philly Soul monger of "Young Americans." The croon Bowie lays into "When You Rock and Roll With Me" and the "Shaft/Superfly" licks in "1984" are the most obvious forays in that direction.

But still, is this really 30 years old? Jeepers, it sounds like it was recorded last week. "Diamond Dogs" is now enriched by the excellent packaging, including Bowie's comments about his state of mind during the creation of the "1984" stage musical concept to several of the contributing players' thoughts, and a host of pictures and other graphics from the period. The bonus disc is a treat as well.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
You know, I've had this album since it was released back in 1974 and thought, "cool album, man".
But since trying to rebuild an album collection into a cd collection of the same size (currently about 400 cd's vs 900 albums) I am always hesitant about replacing some of the albums I've had with the cd format, whether its due to money or the cd formatting (straight transfer, record company ripoffs vs. digital remastering, the only way to go).
And so it came to be with this version of 'Diamond Dogs' by the master of paranoia induced futuristic tales David Bowie.
Last week I bought the 1999 remastered edition and was taken aback by scope of this particular work. Forget what you may read by Rolling Stone or AMG, this is one Bowie's deepest works. The fact that he was rebuked by Orwell's widow is a moot point. Here Bowie is bridging the gap between the glam era of "Man who sold the World"-"Aladdin Sane" to the 'Plastic Soul' period of "Young Americans" and "Station to Station" without missing a beat. The only missed beat was with the music critics, as it always is.
Listen to the often cited song cycle of 'Sweet Thing/Candidate/Sweet Thing-reprise' if you don't believe, he was already there. Not the transition album some expert critics would have you believe, the real transition album would have been "Aladdin Sane". Sure you get some bleed through of moments past but this collection isn't built upon the past but pushing forward. I fail to find any music during the 'Thin White Duke' period that has as much soul or energy put into it as the aforementioned songs set of ST/C/ST-R or "We are the Dead", any of which would have been quite at home on either "Young Americans" or "Station to Station".
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Format: Audio CD
Bowie's voice distorted electronically sets the apocalyptic scene, of a civilization destroyed in the spoken "Future Legend" of mutants in Hunger City called who are waiting for the diamond dogs
After the heralding "This ain't rock and roll... this is genocide!", the title track comes on, sporting a snappy glam riff like T-Rex with some vocals sung as if done underwater, the story continues of the lavish rich having parties, but under prey of the diamond dogs.
The trio of "Sweet Thing", "Candidate", and the reprise of the former, all which segue into one another for a total 8:50, is the longest track (if taken collectively) Bowie's done since "Width Of A Circle." With an out-of-tune guitar and soft piano, a sense of loneliness and isolation permeates throughout the lyrics. Things go a bit more upbeat in "Candidate", with the and more nihilistic: "We'll buy some drugs and watch a band, then jump in the river holding hands." From "hope is a sweet thing", we get "love is a get-it-here thing." This part of the song deals with how one gets power with sex.
By far, the best song here is "Rebel Rebel", a tune with a hard-edged guitar done by Alan Parker and not by Bowie as has been formerly thought, and a Stones-like crunch. The 70's gender-ambiguity is shown in "not sure if you're a boy or a girl." This criminally flopped in the US, but reached #5 on the UK charts. Joan Jett covered this and it shows up on her Flashback compilation.
A soulful and gospel-like feel, with a piano and guitar melody features in the laid back "Rock N Roll With Me," a change from the previous theatrics.
The last three songs is all that's left of the concept album Bowie was trying to model after 1984, only to have George Orwell's widow deny him permission.
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