[7] David Bowie, ‘Starman’

David Bowie

Speaking of Bowie snogging Mick Ronson, here’s Bowie snogging Mick Ronson. To the plotline of a “Starman waiting in the sky,” Junior says, “I’m scared.” The rest of us know she should be boogieing, but instead there’s a look of wide-eyed wonder (I think it’s wonder) as I explain how great Bowie is – or was – and wheel out my best Bard Of Bromley shaky croon.

Contemporary reports suggest this was a last-ditch addition to the Ziggy Stardust album, but it feels older, more organic, closer in intimate pitch to Hunky Dory or The Man Who Sold The World. Perhaps its delicacy is timeless, although – come on – Dave would never be tethered to any point in history. He’s a chronological chameleon, the Dame of Dates, a Time Lawd.

[1] Massive Attack, ‘Unfinished Sympathy (Paul Oakenfold Mix)’

Shara Nelson

“Forced” by public opinion and common decency to drop the ‘Attack’ half from their name for the duration of the first Gulf War, Massive still managed to score their debut hit, almost as if the publicity did them no harm. Cynicism aside, it would’ve been a travesty if this hadn’t troubled the chart scorers. As it is, it only flirted with the edges of the Top 10 when it surely deserved to climb far higher. This is the beefed-up Oakenfold single mix: it kicks off properly rather than ambling in like the album version. Pretty much everything else is the same. Shara Nelson still rules, her abortive solo career just a dull twinkle in the corner of her eye.

Junior has chickenpox and I lost my job last week, so we have plenty of time to sit here and pick over the song and its band. But we took potshots at the post-Blue Lines output in the 1995 rundown; maybe we’ll just enjoy this record. Junior gives it the paradoxically supportive shake of the head and waves around the cow-on-a-stick. This is no faint praise.

Right, we all know the drama and beauty of this track, so let’s concentrate on the trivial. My mate had Blue Lines with the ‘Attack’ intact, mine just said ‘Massive’. He thought his was the better artefact, but history would prove him wrong, no?

While we muse over these matters, and where to go next with this place, we’re playing Bowie’s Hunky Dory. Junior is applauding the Dame.

[All my vinyl rips seem to have corrupted; Top 11 mp3s to follow… later]