This is a much better album from Bowie, and on a good day I might even put it in my top 10 records of his. It’s definitely top half though, mainly for how Bowie uses experimentation and properly sets up his musical identity, so this is without a doubt the better, official debut album. How would I rank the songs?
Check out some of my other music lists below:
9 – Cygnet Committee
Maybe if I listen to this more I’ll start to appreciate it, but it’s just way too long for my liking (especially since the actual music isn’t that exciting to begin with).
8 – Letter to Hermione
Not as frustratingly long as “Cygnet Committee”, but equally as bland. This and Cygnet are definitely skippable.
7 – Janine
Slightly more going on here, but this will only ever be a filler track. Pretty good filler track to be fair, but I’d be doing the actual good Bowie songs an injustice if I placed this any higher.
6 – An Occasional Dream
A lovely track that fits the album perfectly, but nowhere near the standout of the record.
5 – Unwashed and Somewhat Slightly Dazed
Slightly more rocky than the other Bowie tracks up to this point, but it’s songs like this that show he was really starting to hit his stride.
4 – God Knows I’m Good
A lovely introspective song, and you can really feel the emotion in Bowie’s voice as he tries to reason with himself.
One thing I haven’t mentioned yet about this album is the fact that acoustic guitar is featured a lot – considerably more than any other album of his. It’s tracks like this that complement the acoustic aesthetic beautifully, and part of me wishes he’d made similar albums to this in his career (but he is the chameleon, so of course his sound would vary from album to album).
3 – Wild Eyed Boy from Freecloud
A sort of underrated track, and I’m surprised this beautiful song doesn’t get the recognition it deserves. Bowie was becoming more high-concept in his songwriting, and if you’re looking for a beautiful orchestral arrangement then this is the song for you.
2 – Memory of a Free Festival
Easily up there as one of Bowie’s most underrated tracks ever, and it’s one of his best album closers. The intro sets the mood brilliantly, before the cult-like chanting is unsettling in the best way possible. An outstanding ending to a fantastic album.
1 – Space Oddity
Well, which other song did you expect to top the list?
There’s a reason this was Bowie’s first big hit, and why it was on his live setlist throughout his whole career – everything about this track is genius, from the storytelling in the lyrics to the futuristic sounds that he employs. I’d say this is easily a top 10 track of his, and it should definitely be considered in the greatest songs of all time.
Aaaand that’s my list. Bowie’s next record would start his dominance in the 70’s (maybe not the album that shot him to superstardom, but it was his first of many great albums of that decade). Until then, check out some of my latest blog posts:
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