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4.6 out of 5 stars105
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 17 January 2016
You can buy the tracks from this album individually, I'm not sure you should do that, with maybe the exception of Ashes to Ashes. This is a body of work, more than individual singles put onto or taken off an album, so at first it can be hard work for some, but give it a few plays, and you will be hooked. I don't own many albums that I have on Tape, CD, Vinyl, Mp3.this album I do.
I haven't played this album for a few years now and I know that when I do its going to take a few plays to fully appreciate its depth and quite frankly the genius of Bowie, for me at his absolute best.
Buy it, play it a few times and enjoy.

Mart
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on 21 April 2016
Brilliant album does not sound dated at all. Classic album
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on 9 July 2010
If the 1970s were a hellish journey for David Bowie, Scary Monsters represents the first night home, a blanket wrapped round the shivering figure, cup of cocoa in one hand and a series of really awful flashbacks and nightmares everytime he falls asleep.

Okay, that sounds stupid, but I mean that in Scary Monsters we find Bowie finally attempting to take stock of the situation (which, in 'It's no game (ii)' he concludes he really doesn't understand).

Cutbacks and cross-references to his earlier material abound: the intro guitar chords to Up The Hill Backwards are the same as the intro chords to 1973's Panic in Detroit - only played backwards. And there is the celebrated attempt, in Ashes to Ashes, to write off Space Oddity as a heroin song. Bowie, of course, has never been averse to making up all sorts of nonsense about his past, and this is no exception: he might have whiffed the odd doobie in 1967 but a junkie he was definitely not.

This album is generally very strong: Carlos Alomar makes a real impression on its overall sound, particularly in the epochal single Ashes to Ashes (fairly grim aside: I once met the keyboard player from the session. He now plays children's birthday parties in North London as one half of a duo called the "Rock N Roll Pirates".) and Fashion, both of which cross back and forth between disco, funk and new wave - an odd combination which no-one else (except Queen in the dreadful Hot Space) has ever tried. And, tiresome though he is, you do have to take your hat off to Rock's own crashing intellectual bore Robert Fripp, who cuts this record up with some stunning, incandescent guitar playing.

The second half of the album is a more "interesting" prospect than the first which, with Ashes to Ashes, Fashion and the title track, is about as strong a side of vinyl that has ever been recorded. Flip it over and you find Teenaged Wildlife, seemingly the paradigmatic "silly voice, random lyrics" Bowie song, but which has the makings of a great, confessional work - perhaps more personal even than Ashes to Ashes, but it's a pity Bowie sings it as if he's trying to impersonate a Leslie rotating speaker. Scream Like a Baby, Because You're Young and Kingdom come (the last featuring once again the rotating speaker impersonation) are less essential, but the album, and the decade, are brought around quite nicely by It's No Game (ii) (where old smarty pants cross references the very album he's singing on) and finally a very odd sound effect, which sounds like someone pouring cement (perhaps to "finish" the album?).

The Rykodisc pressing I own also contains an extraordinary re-recording of Space Oddity, dating from about the time of this album, which Bowie has rearranged in minimalist fashion to resemble Lennon's 'Mother'. Weird, but true.

I used to think this was the best Bowie album of the lot, but now I think there's too much fat in it for that. But, to quote the old chap, "when it's good it's *really* good". If you're serious about Bowie when he was important, this is one you can't do without.

Olly Buxton
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on 6 April 2012
As "Ashes To Ashes" was one of the first singles I ever brought I have always had a soft spot for this album. Popular opinion says that this is Bowie's last truly great album that perhaps is up fans to decide. For me this work shines. Full of great songs sung with passion. Who can help be impressed by Bowie's throat ripping vocal on the opening track "Its no Game". "Teenage Wildlife" moves at a blistering pace, As for "Ashes To Ashes" without doubt one of finest ever singles. Other good albums will follow by Bowie but perhaps never as great as this one.
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on 2 April 2016
Itchy, spiky, jumpy and raw whilst being oddly contained at the same time.
Sure their is the more commercial tracks but then their is so much more ....
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on 14 July 2004
In a discography that includes some of rock's greatest albums, it's hard to choose one Bowie album that outshines all the rest. But for me Scary Monsters is that album. Scorching guitar, pounding drums, ethereal melodies and multi-layered instrumentation are all underpinned by something rare in Bowie: a sense of compassion and an awareness of the frailty of being alive. The feeling of alienation and displacement is as powerful as ever, the lyrics darker and more sardonic than at any time since Aladdin Sane. And Teenage Wildlife is Bowie's masterpiece.
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on 7 April 2016
One of my favourite Bowie albums, finally purchased to replace my original cassette copy.
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on 9 November 2007
This is one of the great Bowie albums. I have to drop a star for this edition, as I bought the SACD, believing for some reason that it would be a surround sound version. Unfortunately that's not the case. The album sounds better than my original CD and vinyl, but having now bought this for the third time, I thought I was getting something extra. The music still stands up after all these years. However, don't cheat the record buyer and make it clear that it is just stereo, as otherwise it's pointless issuing it as a SACD.
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on 11 March 2016
I've been a David Bowie fan since I first heard 'Space Oddity' on the Phillips' label, yet somehow never had this album/cd until now. Not my favourite Bowie album but well worth having. Saw David 'live' in the King George's Hall - Blackburn during the Aladdin Sane tour, what a night !
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on 8 November 2004
Scary Monsters is unforgiveably a rock album, and it has to rate as one of David Bowie's greatest albums. I think so anyway. Every single song on this album is superb, and they can be listened to over and over again. This is a must have for any Bowie fan but also a must for new Bowie fans because this is the legend at his very best.
Everyone should listen to the brilliance of this album, from the part Japanese 'It's no game Part 1' and electropopish hits 'Fashion' and 'Ashes to Ashes' the whole album contains great songs. It may not be a remembered album, but who cares because if you've listen to it then you can pass its greatness on.
So BUY this album and spread the word. This is Bowie's finest achievement and should not be forgotten!
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