White Rabbit Records - Blog

2023 Albums Thing #026 - Bowie “PinUps“

Posted on


I’m gonna level with ya…I don’t like “PinUps”, I never have and likely never will. When I said at the end of the last entry “Bowie was about to make some of the greatest music of his career” this isn’t it.

“Aladdin Sane” had been released to critical acclaim, Bowie was a huge star. The “Ziggy Stardust” tour was over and the last stand had been made at the Hammersmith Odeon on 3rd July 1973. Bowie’s statement from the stage that night

"Of all the shows on this tour this show will stay the longest in our memories, not just because it is the end of the tour but because it is the last show we'll ever do." (or something very close to that)

must have come as a shock to the band as he hadn’t told anyone ! Woody Woodmansey and Trevor Bolder were VERY pissed off at what had and how it had happened.

“PinUps” was recorded at the Château d’Hérouville, an 18th century château come recording studio near Paris. Mick Ronson and Mike Garson were invited to take part. After Cream’s bass player Jack Bruce turned Bowie down and following some peacemaking from Ronson, Trevor Bolder came along too. Session man Aynsley Dunbar played drums, Woody Woodmansey was not invited.

The album is a selection of cover versions of songs from the Mod heydays in mid 60’s London (and I’ve already opined that I don’t think Bowie was very good at picking songs to cover) featuring songs from The Pretty Things, The Kinks, The Easybeats, Pink Floyd and other such luminaries. To me it has only 2 redeeming features. The first is the cover of The Who’s “I Can’t Explain”, taken at a slower pace than the original and featuring Bowie’s asthmatic sax. The second didn’t emerge until 17 years later when an expanded re-issue included the previously unreleased version of Bruce Springsteen’s “Growing Up” (which I believe was recorded during the Diamond Dogs sessions (?) so has no place here anyway).

“PinUps” is Bowie treading water. I find it utterly forgettable.

(Interesting side note, this and his next album are credited not to David Bowie but just Bowie.)

Growing Up - https://youtu.be/xwPKvT-1APg

Add a comment:

Leave a comment:


Add a comment