Phantom Sway

Vintage Gold: The Man Who Sold The World

It was the deep cut “Black Country Rock” that grabbed my young ears.

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The Man Who Sold The World is one of those overlooked records in that stretch for Bowie where Aladdin Sane, Ziggy Stardust, Diamond Dogs, Space Oddity and Hunky Dory sucked up all the oxygen in the room even though the title track was an AOR killer. However it was the deep cut “Black Country Rock” that grabbed my young ears.

It was of its time, inheriting more of a hard rock stance than glam as Mick Ronson tried to capture his best Tony Iommi and Martin Barre in the track’s main riff while Bowie himself was finally shaking off the “Lou Reed” effect and sounding a lot like Captain Beyond. For all his originality, Bowie knew how to “borrow” from the best of them. Of course a year later he was off and running his own race down his own unique path. But this testament to early 70’s hard rock was quite inspiring and reared its head again on the the title track to Ziggy Stardust when the Spiders were in full flight.

Justin Press

A metalhead Virginia kid with a Texas spirit, an NYC restlessness and a Utah mountainside soul. Born of an English mother and a German father, an introverted extrovert, the shadow and the illumination: English prose with German fire. I’ve huddled with the poor and downtrodden in Berlin, bathed in the Dead Sea, dined at Buckingham Palace, and broken bread in Tunisia.