Friday, October 23, 2015

RE-UP: David Bowie live in Osaka 1978 - 2CD - December 6

David Bowie
Koseneinkin Kaikan
Osaka, Japan
December 6, 1978

Mick Ronson OGWT April 1975

Very good audience recording
Running time: 1:59:08

This is all quite complicated so please bear with me and pay attention. I received this tape in a trade in the late 70's, of the 45+ 1978 shows I had at the time it was one of my key favourites due to it's wonderful quality and performance. Unfortunately the tape was one of those awful C120 two hour tapes and one day my tape deck decided to eat it.
After carefully extracting the remains I was horrified to find the sound had become dull and warbled. In disgust it was thrown in a box and has lain untouched for 25+ years.

Upon finding MWP 18+ months ago, I thought that this would be a great show to re-aquire, I couldn't find it anywhere on the tracker so I started raving on about this great recording and making requests. I got very little response from anyone, then Blackout started his uploading marathon and he graciously agreed to upload his version, warning me it was not great in fact barely better than average for the tour.

I eagerly downloaded his torrent and dug out my tape for a comparison, this opened a whole new can of worms, It sounded completely different and by that I mean a different show! Upon further investigation we realised the first part of his upload was infact the 7th and not the 6th, the second half was the 6th and the same source recording but as he warned the quality was far from great.

This did however have one benefit I found that halfway through Heroes my tape burst back into life and only the first 1½ tracks were damaged, something I had never checked all those years ago.
It was now Chrisnathou's turn to play his part, he very kindly uploaded his "Isolar 2" boot of this show on HC, again the same source recording and only average at bestbut it did give something to compare. Upon close examination it was obvious it had also been heavily EQ'd in the past to produce the CD's.

I was getting nowhere fast but I had one more chance. The Bassman site described a second boot of part of the show "Reaction" as "The sound quality is excellent,and is recorded from Japanese FM. Hot stuff!" (didn't believe the FM bit but more about that later) I thought perhaps this is the quality I'm after and asked Andreas who had put this on MWP in the past if he could re-upload it. This he promptly did, the quality was much better, it too had been heavily EQ'd in the past prior to production of the LP to remove the hiss so much so that the audience had virtually disappeared so I couldn't decide if this was from the same source or not, nevertheless I got devious and set to work.

This upload therefore is as follows: Warszawa has been EQ'd to brighten it up (still warbles but still 100% better than the Isolar 2 version), The first section of heroes (2 mins 33 secs) is from the "Reaction" boot remastered so the sound matches the rest of the track (as best as my limited ability will allow) and to be honest the join is smoother than I could possibly have hoped for and trust me it's a lot better than a warbleing Heerooeesss. From the second half of Heroes to the end of the show is pretty much a raw transfer from my tape with no EQ work or hiss removal.

The only work I did was to balance the volume between tracks and channels, tidy any clicks etc and remove 2 or 3 very small skips (these are also on the Isolar 2 boot and probable come from the mastertape).
If one of you has a low gen copy of this show that is equal or better in quality, please do your duty and upload it so this show can take it's rightful place as one of the best recordings of this fabulous tour.

The late great Mick Ronson "strange choice of bonus tracks" I hear you cry. A bit of fun really and Very simple, they were on the end of the tape, completely forgot they were there so I thought why not? The quality was diabolical and they were barely audible, I used every trick I know to improve them, the purists amongst you would probably have a heart attack if you knew what I did. The sound is still a bit harsh but quite listenable, I've never seen these on another tracker so probably new to a lot of you. There will definitely be better versions out there and the video probably, If you have either I would love an upgrade.

Finally, the fabled "FM Broadcast", before Pimm's book in the early 80's I had never heard of this, in fact I have never met anyone who claims to have this recording. I may be wrong but I find it very hard to believe that a FM broadcast of Bowie from this period in of all places Japan would not have been recorded by dozens of people and be one of the commonest boots of the tour. Personally I think it was nothing more than a wind up over a very good audience recording. If you can prove me wrong please do.

1. Warszawa
2. "Heroes"
3. What In The World
4. Be My Wife
5. The Jean Genie
6. Blackout
7. Sense Of Doubt
8. Breaking Glass
9. Fame
10. Beauty And The Beast
11. Band Introductions/Five years
12. Soul Love
13. Star
14. Hang Onto Yourself
15. Ziggy Stardust
16. Suffragette City
17. Art Decade
18. Alabama Song
19. Station To Station
20. TVC15
21. Stay
22. Rebel Rebel

Bonus tracks:
Mick Ronson OGWT April 1975

23. Play Don't Worry
24. Angel No.9

Download this bootleg here

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