‘Station to Station’ steeped in intrigue

David Bowie’s album "Station to Station" is steeped in intrigue, from the tale that Bowie was living entirely off of cocaine, peppers and milk and remembers nothing of the production of the album to the fact that "Station to Station" was Bowie’s highest charting album in the United States, peaking at number three and staying there for thirty two weeks, no doubt fueled by his classic track "Golden Years" which earned him the accolade of being the first white artist to play on the then popular R&B program Soul Train. David Bowie’s star on both sides of the Atlantic had never been higher at the time, as Bowie had just completed an iconic turn as Thomas Jerome Newton in the big screen version of Walter Tevis’ 1963 novel "The Man Who Fell to Earth" however due to his incessant drug use he, personally, had never been lower. Out of his experience in "The Man Who Fell to Earth", David Bowie created his last artificial persona that would take over his identity, the "Thin White Duke". The "Thin White Duke" persona got David Bowie into some trouble as he had been received as pro-fascist with statements like "Adolph Hitler was one of the first rock stars…", Bowie attempted to rectify these types of comments four years later on the opening track, "It’s No Game", on his 1980 album "Scary Monsters" with the lyrics "To be insulted by these fascists/It’s so degrading". It is also of note that Bowie was arrested in 1976 during his "Station to Station" tour at the Americana Hotel in Rochester, New York. The resulting mug shot is now plastered all over the internet.

With all of this mayhem in Bowie’s life to consider, it’s no doubt that this album is going to be somewhat of a transition. Bowie sought to combine the rock and funk styles that he had pioneered with austere electronic sounds and synthesizers. It’s widely believed that "Station to Station" is the halfway point between Bowie’s funky "Young Americans" album and his experimental "Low" album. From the albums’ ten minute opener of the same name as the album, it’s clear that there is something different brewing on "Station to Station". The album is, perhaps the perfect halfway point between an artist’s experimentation and their commercial appeal, and as such has been featured as number 323 on Rolling Stone’s "500 Greatest Albums of All Time". Since Bowie’s music is as ageless as the icon himself, it’s no surprise that "Station to Station" is being released again with all kinds of goodies for Bowie fanatics. The new package contains 3 CDs as well as a 16 page booklet, photocards, and a re-mastered edition of one of Bowie’s most bootlegged performances, 1976’s performance at the Nassau Colliseum.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *