As the follow-up to The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, David Bowie’s 1973 album Aladdin Sane is sometimes overlooked. Yet the punningly-titled Aladdin Sane had racked up advance sales of 100,000 units by the day of its release (April 13, 1973), becoming Bowie’s very first U.K. Number One record and spawning two Top 3 singles there (“The Jean Genie” and “Drive-In Saturday”). Across the pond, Aladdin Sane was the artist’s very first U.S. Top 20 record. Once again following in the footsteps of Ziggy – in this case, that album’s 40th anniversary remastered edition, released last year – Aladdin will arrive in a newly-remastered edition on April 15, 2013 from the Parlophone Label Group. (Previously a part of EMI, a condition of Universal’s acquisition of EMI was that Parlophone be divested from Universal. The label’s future ownership has still not been determined.) It’s also arriving a little more than one month after Bowie’s long-awaited surprise “comeback” album, The Next Day, due on March 15.
While boasting a fresh remaster by Ray Staff, that 2012 Ziggy eschewed the bonus tracks from all previous editions, presenting simply the original album in its CD release. (Ziggy was also released on an LP/DVD edition; the audio DVD did contain some additional material in 5.1.) The new Aladdin Sane follows suit. Staff, who cut the original LP while at Trident Studios, has remastered it for 2013 at London’s AIR Studios. As of now, a remastered vinyl edition hasn’t yet been announced, nor has an audio DVD.
So what will you find on the new Aladdin Sane? Hit the jump!
You’ll get the album’s original 10 tracks as recorded at Trident Studios in London, and RCA’s New York and Nashville studios, between October 6, 1972 and January 24, 1973. Aladdin Sane would prove to be the final album from Bowie and the Spiders from Mars: Mick Ronson (guitar, piano, backing vocals), Trevor Bolder (bass) and Mick “Woody” Woodmansey (drums). Mike Garson played piano (including an iconic solo on the title track), Ken Fordham was credited with flute and saxophone, and Bowie himself played guitar, harmonica and sax. Linda Lewis was among the background singers. The LP’s diverse palette took in rock, soul, jazz and classical influences, and the line-up includes the fifties-go-futuristic vibe of “Drive-In Saturday,” the sleazy “Cracked Actor,” the ambitious title song and melodramatic “Time,” the driving opener “Watch That Man” and the radio-friendly glam of “The Jean Genie.” In addition to Bowie’s remarkable set of originals, the album also makes room for a glam-rock makeover of The Rolling Stones’ “Let’s Spend the Night Together.”
The last CD reissue of Aladdin Sane, 2003’s 30th Anniversary Edition from EMI, added ten bonus tracks on a second disc, including live versions, outtakes and single edits. (The album has also been released in single-CD versions from RCA, Rykodisc and Virgin. Whew!) If you’re interested in hearing Ray Staff’s new remaster, you can pick up Aladdin Sane on April 15 on CD and digitally. (A “Mastered for iTunes” album will be available there.) We’ll update with a pre-order link as soon as one is active!
David Bowie, Aladdin Sane: 40th Anniversary Edition (RCA Victor LSP-4852 (U.S.), reissued Parlophone, 2013)
- Watch That Man
- Aladdin Sane (1913-1938-197?)
- Drive-In Saturday
- Panic in Detroit
- Cracked Actor
- The Prettiest Star
- Let’s Spend the Night Together
- The Jean Genie
- Lady Grinning Soul