50 years ago, on 16 of June 1972 David Bowie released his third album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and The Spiders From Mars. And it was this excact album that made David Bowie to the well-known star, we remeber today. Sadly David Bowie past away in January 2016. Pale Wizard Records tributes this amazing record Ziggy Stardust together with thirteen different artists.
As you may know, there are eleven tracks on the original album, but we also get three bonus tracks on CD and digital releases (“Ashes to Ashes“, “The Jean Genie” and “Sweet Thing Pt. 1“) so in total 14 songs. There are also two 12” Vinyl versions. Tony Reed, who was also responsible for the mastering, is the one who has two tracks on the album.
Don’t expect a copy of the original. The album sounds quite modern, with punchy drums and modern guitar sounds. Some of the singers follow the lines by David Bowie, while others perform the songs on their very own way. Overall the characteristics, the cores of the songs are kept, what is very important, in my opinion, but each band is able to give their very own flavour to each song.
So what flavours we are talking about? Deltanaut did a great job on “It Ain’t Easy“, with the Hammond Organ, making it sound like one of Led Zeppelin‘s or Deep Purple‘s harder rock tracks. Possessor make “Hang on To Yourself” to a dirty punk/metal track. And then there is Redshift‘s “Ziggy Stardust“. In the verses they are quite near to the original, but in the chorus and the break after it they definetly go there own way. First I was a little… sceptical, but after a few runs it makes me smile. So, everything is fine. Raging Speedhorn sounding like a metal version of the Rolling Stones in “Suffragette City” is fun as well, especially if you know their own stuff.
Pale Wizard Records and the chosen artists did a good job in my opinion and it’s fun to listen to this tribute album. If you don’t know the original, go for it first, please. It’s one of the important albums in music history, and especially in the history of David Bowie, one of the greatest artists in music. And after this homework go and have some fun with this album.