My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Original album is tracks 1-8
Brief Background: Young Americans was mainly recorded in Philadelphia, PA during 1974 the tour for Diamond Dogs. The album is a direct effort to get away from his glam sound and move towards Blue-Eyed soul. It was released in March of 1975.
What I think: This is a very interesting album that is filled with a sound I would say is almost pre-disco. It’s really dancey at times and filled with really adventurous saxophone at all times. It’s certainly a sound that, even with so much revival of various genres, hasn’t been used in decades. It’s a sound that can be embraced as unique for it time, and is also easy to embrace in a really ironic way. So it’s likable on many different levels.
My favorite tracks are the title track, I just love the energy in the song and if you don’t like that breakdown towards the end you aren’t alive. The cover of “Across the Universe” is pretty great, which is an achievement, because the original is so distinct. I think my favorite track on the album though, is “Somebody Up There Likes Me”. It’s a great jam with a lot of inspiration and energy and it really sums up the album well. I do have to say that I’ve never been much of a fan of “Fame”. The music in it is pretty cool, but the effects on the vocals just turn me off.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? I do think it should be here, but I feel it’s more of a personal achievement in reinvention for Bowie than being a step for music in general.
Rating (Out of 5) 3.5
Young Americans Amazon Rating(Out of 5): 4.5
Is this my first time hearing this album? Yes (268/342)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 78%