If I slept last night I don't remember it. For somewhere that looks dead and is closed at least half the time this particular part of Nuremberg is noisy as fuck. It' starts around nine o'clock, the doorway opposite my apartment is a night club and next to it a seemingly lawless drinking establishment, one that thinks nothing of opening until 6.00am Monday morning. When these mother fuckers finally shut up shop the street cleaners take up the mantle and make as much noise as they can cleaning up the broken glass and cigarette ends. Then, then it's up to the builders a few doors down to keep me awake.
Usually I am a keen advocate of the right to bare/bear arms, but on this occasion honestly think that the fact that I am unable to keep a hand gun in the house is a good thing. I usually run out of expletives to scream out of the window around 3.00am, despair takes hold and I try desperately to think of anything I might be able to launch at them, use as a missile - There isn't a doubt in my mind, had I been packing a gun would have been drawn at some point over the past year. This is what happens when you push a man to the edge.
Noise terror is a tactic used to this day by the CIA. They pumped Twisted Sister into a stadium sized sound system erected outside Noreiga's house, he caved after a few days. I've put up with this for over a year - I deserve a fucking medal or at the very least a rent reduction.
Anyway, the reason for my early rising, my listening to loud music at this time of the morning? Oh, that'll be to drown out those builders drills, their happy hammers. Nothing seems to get done, it just sounds like it is.
So onto British pop's very own chameleon Sir? (Is it sir? It should be) David Bowie. I y had to rummage for a while to find something even remotely appropriate to this morning's mood. loud and shouty seemed a little juvenile and the jazz I kept pulling out might have just served as a tipping point. My hand found this and I thought, 'Maybe David can sort me out.' He is.
I can't think of any solo artist's with a cannon of priors as desirable as those of the man Bowie. In retrospect the way he seemingly shit masterwork after masterwork almost feels totally effortless, as if all he had to do was clock in at the studio and pick the cover art. There is some truth in this, Bowie is god but at the same time much of the magic has come with age. This was met with a very little enthusiasm on it's release in 1979, seen as a kack handed end to what is now known as 'The Berlin Trilogy'. Today of course it is worshipped almost as roundly as 'Low'.
And the question everyone is asking today? Why is there a picture of the corpse of Che Guevara on the inside of the gatefold sleeve? I really don't want to think about any parallels he might have been trying to draw here and will quietly and quite happily put the inclusion of said image down to whatever substances Dave was abusing at the time.
Sound-wise it is unlike anything else being made at that time. Contextualize if you will the abstract instrumentation, backwards loops and vocal effects that make up 'Lodger'. It was 1979 and...Oh, yeah, okay so other people were doing it but was anybody actually doing it as well as this? Say Talking Heads and I will find you and I will kill you.
I have decided to play this until the noise outside stops - by which time I am sure, I will know every single note and word.
I could always make a petrol bomb.