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The Bowie Years [Box Set] Image

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  • Summary: The seven-disc box set includes remasters of Iggy Pop's The Idiot, Lust For Life, and the live album T.V. Eye, as well as a disc of outtakes, and recordings from three live sets in March of 1977 at London's Rainbow Theatre, Cleveland's The Agora and Chicago's Mantra Studios.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 7
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 7
  3. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. 95
    This box set is a treasure trove for people who’ve never heard any of Iggy Pop’s various bootlegged and semi-official releases over the years, especially the releases pertaining to this era. The quality of these albums – and Bowie’s entire Berlin period – is so high because the sessions were so economical, and no ideas were abandoned along the way.
  2. Uncut
    Jun 5, 2020
    The Idiot and Lust For Life still mostly sound thrillingly bold. ... Sadly, the bonus disc of outtakes and rare tracks is thin. ... Substantial live discs. [Jul 2020, p.51]
  3. Mojo
    Jun 5, 2020
    The extras will delight Ig-heads and Bowie buffs, likewise the thoroughly annotated 40-page booklet, featuring new interviews with key participants. [Jul 2020, p.92]
  4. Jun 8, 2020
    In addition to remasters of The Idiot and Lust for Life, Pop’s new boxed set loops in the decent if not great TV Eye Live (a live album originally released in 1978 to free Pop from his RCA contract), a disc of alternate mixes and edits, and three live discs all recorded in 1977, featuring Bowie on keys and with very similar tracklists—a show of excess for anyone but the most ardent completionist fascinated by the variations in delivery and ad-libbing from different performances on the same tour. [Grades for seven discs: 86, 90, 63, 50, 74, 72, & 63]
  5. 70
    Music-wise there’s little not already on the 2007 box set 1977, including the alternative mixes of Dum Dum Boys, Baby, China Girl and Tiny Girls placed among assorted singles edits on the new collection’s Demos & Rarities disc, or the London Rainbow gig on another.
  6. 70
    Those who haven’t absorbed this music yet will find it to be as edgy and intense as anything in Pop’s catalog, and deserving of the lavish treatment it receives here. Bowie fans, especially of his darker, experimental Berlin recordings, will also find this a welcome and even essential addition to his own classic albums of these storied years.
  7. Jun 12, 2020
    The packaging is beautiful and the intentions are admirable, but The Bowie Years tells us nothing essentially new about this vitally important moment in Iggy Pop's career, especially since outside of the disc of rarities, chances are good many committed Pop fans already have most of this in their collections.
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