Day two of five things that influenced me as a kid.
If memory serves, Low was the third album I bought. Its dark timbres blew open my universe, gave me a brittle sound-scape to pin all my adolescent, depressive nihilism to, as well as elevating my dilapidated geography to the status of Art. It made me imagine I could be living in Berlin or Paris, anywhere but the grey dirge of Liverpool.Having served notice on the Seventies, the man himself must have been arbitrarily pissed then, that there were so many keen progenitors to the title of avant garde doyen, enough to the point that he dismissed Gary Numan as an integrally spurious clone in interviews (he was), wrote a song called Teenage Wildlife, dragged a few Blitz clubbers along to be bulldozed for the Ashes video, before turning his back on them altogether with the polished R&B grooves of Lets Dance.
He need not of been so peevish, his godhead status was already cast, and what he missed was that in the Berlin trilogy, he would unleash hundreds of Bowie children,all muddy headed willing students of cool,hungry for every syllable, influence and gallery he had digested.
To a working class lad growing up in poverty stricken inner city, there was little hope of ones world being opened to culture of any kind, but there it was German Expressionism, Dada, Surrealism, Nietzsche, Ballard, Phillip K Dick, Burroughs, all filtered through the perfection of a pop song.
Where else could one hear about Cabaret Voltaire or Dr Caligari, where else could one find aspiration to be something other- certainly not in the stifling of a provincial class room.
Below are a selection of cuts that would become the aural accompaniment to my artistic dabbling from those days to this.
John Foxx-I want to be a Machine
Japan-Gentlemen take Polaroids
China Crisis-Black Man Ray
Heaven 17-Geisha Boys and Temple Girls