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on 9 June 2012
So, yet another re-issue of one of the most iconic British rock albums ever. Is it worth investing in again? Well, yes it is. After the total debacle that was the 30th Anniversary edition (marred by poor re-mastering and bad editing, although the bonus tracks were a slight saving grace) we have the 40th Anniversary. Newly re-mastered, it's a big improvement in sound, although still not perfect.(And has no bonus tracks - Boo!) It might sound like nit-picking but why have they persisted with the USA album mix of 'Starman'? To answer the question posed by another reviewer the original mix as it appeared on the UK vinyl and single had a much louder and drier piano build-up before the choruses, devoid of the phasing applied to the mix of the track on the American pressings of the album. All subsequent CD releases have used the US mix, depriving those of us who treasure our original UK vinyl a chance to own the track in digital format. Unfortunately, this re-issue is no different so the wait goes on. That aside, if you don't own this album already (and let's face it, if you're a fan of proper music you really should) then this is the one to go for. I won't go into detail about each track - suffice to say there's many high points here - but it contains some of Bowies' finest moments. Opening track 'Five Years' 'Moonage Daydream' 'Starman' 'Suffragette City' not to mention the closing song 'Rock N Roll Suicide'. A magnificent example of how to build a track from simple to grandiose in just three minutes. It's not Bowies' greatest album but it IS his most important and for that reason alone you cannot call yourself a David Bowie fan and NOT own it. 50th Anniversary anyone?
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on 21 May 2016
This is a review of the vinyl album (2012 remaster) no extra's.
Firstly i'll deal with the packaging. The cover is of a very good quality with a fine textured finish, it comes with a copy of the original inner sleeve with lyrics and images, plus an antistatic plain white sleeve, a nice touch.
RCA logos have been replaced with that of Parlophone.
The vinyl is 180g with orange labels made to look like the originals but no RCA logos, instead it just says Bowie.
I always clean any vinyl i receive (old or new) before i attempt to think about playing it, no exception here. Put it through my cleaning machine and then sat to enjoy.
I can honestly say that the vinyl plays cleanly all the way through and is quite between tracks, very happy with it. Sounds great, i would prefer an original, but prices are getting ridiculous, so this remaster seemed ideal at the price.
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on 14 January 2018
Disc one has ‘Ziggy’, of which it has all been written. However, I’ll say it again. This is, without doubt, the most important and influential album of the 1970s. From ‘Five Years’ through to ‘Rock’n’Roll Suicide’ we are treated to spontaneous, edgy, exciting, virtuosic ‘pop/rock’ the likes of which had never been heard before. Bowie never sounded better than when he was backed by (only) the three ‘Spiders’. The 2003 remastering is clear and concise.

The comprehensive liner notes, in booklet form, along with the photographs (some that were not familiar) are well worth having. This double CD release is a well thought out and meaningful package.

Disc two, however, is what makes this actual release an essential purchase. To have the ‘B’ sides ‘Amsterdam’ (1971) and ‘Round and Round’ (1972) available on CD is a real boon. ‘Amsterdam’, in particular, has David Bowie on top form, vocally and he ‘stacks’ his 12-string guitars to a crescendo in this emotional rendition in the ‘chanson’ by Jacques Brel. ‘The Supermen’ (1971 recording with ‘The Spiders’) is a revelation. Just listen to Mick Ronson’s guitar, especially on the second chorus. This serves to illustrate how and why this period (1971-2) is Bowie’s most creative (arguably) and most interesting. On ‘Velvet Goldmine’, ‘Sweet Head’ and ‘Holy Holy’ (the later version, as opposed to the 1970 ‘Blue Mink’ version) Bowie’s optimism and ‘swagger’ are so evident. These recordings are the last that Bowie made before the stardom that was inevitable. Ziggy was a monster, indeed!

Oh, such wonderful music. Thank you, Messrs. Jones, Ronson, Bolder and Woodmansey. It just doesn’t get any better than this.
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on 28 October 2016
I have grown to love this album this year. Previously, I saw 70s Bowie as my brother's music. He was one of those people who would borrow LPs from the library and learn to play by ear some of the music on his guitar. This album was one of those LPs, though I only remember my brother playing Ziggy.

When I listen to this album, I don't skip any of the songs. Soul Love, Moonage Day Dream, Suffragette City, Hang onto Yourself, Star, and Lady Stardust in particular became favourites of mine this year. I was surprised to see that Ziggy works really well on the piano, as a pianist.

One other thing that has surprised me, in relation to this album, is that It Ain't Easy is a David Bowie song or at least he did a cover version of the song. I recognise the song from an advert that was out in the last few years but it wasn't clear to me before listening to this album this year that the song was done by David Bowie.

Oh, and how could I forget Rock and Roll Suicide! It's a message song that I'm surprised isn't better known given how powerful it is, especially as time has gone on. I can imagine that this song has helped save a lot of lives over the years and will continue to do so.

As far as I'm concerned, there is no filler on this album, and it is worthy of being recognised as one of David's best.
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on 20 March 2013
I grew up with two older David Bowie fans in the 1970s and liked his musical output from this decade almost as much as my brothers. I used to play the vinyl version of this as a teenager, which I still have - but as I no longer have a record player, I decided to buy this CD, also prompted by watching a recent repeat of a BBC documentary on Bowie to mark the 40th anniversary of his Ziggy Stardust tour and the original release of this album. Listening to it as an adult, I still think it is brilliant, even more so in fact, as I feel I'm more able to understand the meaning of Bowie's lyrics now. I sometimes think a lot of attention is given to Bowie's image throughout this career but not much comment is made on his singing capacity - my view is he has a wonderfully expressive voice, on some tracks it is soft, romantic even (i.e., on "Soul Love"), on others it is quite mournful and on the more rock orientated tracks, strident, powerful and upbeat (i.e, on "Suffragette City"). All the tracks on this album are great and demonstrate Bowie's unique creative genius; those of you Bowie fans who are aged 40+ will already be familiar with it, but it is worth adding to your music collection if you don't already have it - and for anyone younger and curious to become more acquainted with Bowie's music and discover why in the 1970s he made such a big impact on the UK music scene and what all the fuss was about, this is well worth buying. It still sounds great all these years later - and lets not forget his band at the time who play a big part in making this album the work of art it is. After listening to it again after some years, I couldn't stop singing "Moonage Daydream" to myself! I hope anyone who buys this album after reading my review will enjoy it as much as I have.
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on 3 March 2016
I have the album on SACD from around 2005,which i though was quite good, but the new remaster is even better, as close as you are going to get to the original. I also have this in a digital download format 192/24, Doing some back to back listening, I think the vinyl version sounsd better, don't know why, because this must have been mastered form a digital source in the first place. Its a pity that they can't master straight to vinyl form the original analog tape, for me that would be the icing on the cake. (still think 70's and 80's vinyl sounds better) But for now this is probably the best new vinyl cut that I have heard in a long time, perhaps the sound engineers are slowly learning how to cut vinyl again, go buy it, its a classic and you won't be disappointed.
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on 9 July 2013
I heard Ziggy first in the 70's, but I was too young to feel it. I didn't hear it again until I was in Paris in 1990 having bough the cassette. I was honestly sitting drinking a milkshake in a cafe in the Arcadia on Champs Elysee when I heard five years and I almost felt like I was given a poke to say pay attention you might be in this song. From there on it had me and I understood what my older family members had meant, Five years like all these tracks has such fine imagery. Soul Love, seems like it's an anti-war song at the start, but in true Bowie style turns out to be pondering the nature of love in many forms from cruel to randomly idiotic. Moonage Daydream really is an Alligator and eats you whole as it slurps out it's chorus and eats you whole again. Starman is pure childhood memory, I remember when this came out and it sounded nostalgic even then, still a killer after forty years, still makes me sigh like a child. I think Lady Stardust is just beautiful, to me it explores the ambiguity of sexuality, how a boy in a dress or a girl in shirt and jeans can trick us out of the norm of our libido, especially if they are performing. Star, seems to take the mickey out of being a "Star" and sounds like a Rock'n' Roll braggart making empty claims, but Bowie's gentle humour makes you think without trying too hard at all. Hang Onto Yourself is just an all out rock and just fab to sing along to. Even if you don't know what the next song is called, you will remember it when you hear the opening riff, classic and again full of rich imagery, love this song but he finished off with my two real favourites Suffragette City and Rock'n'Roll Suicide, Suffragette City I feel looks at how when something becomes fashionable people will jump on a bandwagon and try to gain currency from something they don't feel, like the big bi-sexual thing in the seventies and early eighties when people would pretend to be bi and when it came to the crunch they couldn't do it, they were left high and dry with no ticket back to cutting edge suffragette city, of course it could easily apply to more relevant things of the time drug abuse, permissiveness, or just the endless quest to be cool, Bowie rocks it. Rock and Roll Suicide though had everything, I love it's cool opening and the way that the sweeping, bassy jazz part rolls along in the background and then Bowie crying Oh No Love ! You're not alone! just amazing and leaves you with that "I didn't waste my money feeling"... Go ON! Buy it
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on 14 October 2014
Have the 1972 original, the MSFL vinyl, the Rykodisc cd and a few more cd re-issues. Yes, it's that special - it's among the top 100 records released during my lifetime, at least. So what's to say about this re-re-...-re-release? The punch-line is that you get the best sounding versions of this classic, both in the cd format and in the LP ditto, so what's there not to like? Alienation is accomplished not only through the songs' lyrics, but with extra texture, thanks to the clearer separation between instruments. That's usually what you get with this modern technology, and it can sometimes make you want to go back to the muddier 1972 version because that's how you grew up with it, but hey! - this version is so good that you will forget the 1972 one, and even the MFSL - they cannot compare at all. As Michael Jackson said - this is it. Although I bet there will be a 50th anniversary edition in 3-D!
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on 24 November 2016
The iconic Bowie album which catapulted him to stardom. The album is like a musical book with a range of characters and stories mainly around the theme of alienation and isolation. From the opening track "Five Years' to the searing closing track of 'Rock 'n' Roll Suicide', the albums charts the highs and lows of rock fame and its successes and causalities. Overall, it is an exciting if bleak look into fame and its consequences and no Bowie collection is complete with Ziggy Stardust being in it.
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on 7 March 2016
Looking at other reviews here it seems some people are receiving bad pressings of this. I must have got lucky because mine is perfect. I've listened to it a few times through and not heard a single crackle, pop or skip. Sounds as clean as a CD. This is in stark contrast to my 180g copy of Dark Side of the Moon that is full of pops and crackles (wish I had sent that one back). I guess you win some and lose some with modern vinyl.
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