Just a handful of the Bowie front covers that have appeared round the globe in the last couple of weeks.
Thanks to those of you who have contributed scans...you know who you are!
I've charted all over the world...
Loads more first week chart positions for 'Heathen' have been announced, one of the more exciting of those being the US position of number 14! That's the highest US chart entry since 'Tonight', which reached #11 in 1984. So far that means that David has 16 top twenty positions, 12 of which are top ten! Australia doesn't have 'Heathen' just yet, but hopefully the album will perform similarly there shortly.
Here follows a recap of the positions we have so far, including one for Iceland from the MBs (thanks Bjossilu). Below this run-down of positions is a press release with a whole bunch of quotes from recent reviews, mainly American, that no doubt helped a few nervous buyers to decide.
Ireland # 6
Finland # 11
Belgium # 12
Total Blam Blam - (BowieNet News Editor)
'HEATHEN' DEBUTS IN TOP 15 IN 14 COUNTRIES INCLUDING THE U.S.
Heathens around the world have united.
DAVID BOWIE's newly released HEATHEN (ISO/Columbia)-his 25th album-is making a powerful impact all over the globe. Riding a wave of critical acclaim that's ranking the album among his best work, HEATHEN entered the top 15 in 14 countries: the U.S. (#14, marking his highest first week chart entry in the SoundScan era), U.K., Canada, Germany, France, Japan, Ireland, Italy, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Belgium. This list includes six top 5 debuts: Denmark (#1), Norway (#2), France (#3), Germany (#4), Austria (#4) and the U.K. (#5).
"Here, for the first time in decades, he collaborates with producer Tony Visconti, he of 'Low' and 'Heroes' fame, and the effect is suitably thrilling," wrote Jim Nelson in GQ, (6/02), while Jeff Gordinier hailed the HEATHEN as "...a grand and haunted album..." in an Entertainment Weekly cover story (5/31/02). Richard Cromelin, writing in the Los Angeles Times (6/16/02), hailed the album as "rich, direct, emotional and sometimes playful," with the Associated Press' Jim Collins declaring it "A masterpiece from a rock 'n' roll master (appearing in the Cleveland Plain Dealer 6/16/02)." Rolling Stone's David Fricke summed it up by saying that HEATHEN is "...Bowie playing Bowie, with class (6/20/02)."
BOWIE recently performed a sold-out show for BowieNet members at NYC's Roseland June 11, followed by an outdoor mini-concert for the Today Show June 14 which attracted some 5,000 fans to Rockefeller Plaza in NYC (this figure equals the crowd size for *NSYNC's Today Show appearance) despite rainy weather..
Next, BOWIE heads to London's annual Meltdown--where he's serving as this year's festival director-for his special concert, 'THE NEW HEATHENS' NIGHT, June 29 at the Royal Festival Hall. This will be followed by performances at a number of high-profile European festivals, beginning July 3 at Kristinansand, Norway's Quart Festival, through July 18 at the Montreux, Switzerland Jazz Festival. BOWIE then returns to the States for the Area2 tour, starting July 28 in Washington, DC and visiting 12 cities throughout the summer, ending August 16 in Seattle. The trek also features tour founder Moby along with Busta Rhymes, Carl Cox and many others.
Meanwhile, fans who missed BOWIE's June 15 A&E "Live By Request" two-hour concert special should tune into the encore broadcasts airing Sunday, June 23 from 5:00-7:00 PM (ET/PT) and Thursday, June 27 from 9:00-11:00 PM (ET/PT).
DAVID BOWIE'S 'HEATHEN':
"A loose theme runs through these songs, covers included: the search for guiding light in godless night. But the real story is Heathen's perfect casting: Bowie playing Bowie, with class."
--David Fricke, ROLLING STONE, June 20, 2002
"Here, for the first time in decades, he collaborates with producer Tony Visconti, he of 'Low' and 'Heroes' fame, and the effect is suitably thrilling."
--Jim Nelson, GQ, June 2002
"It's relaxed, straightforward, quietly intense. Even the electronic adornments sound warm and organic in this melancholy world. Rich, direct, emotional and sometimes playful, it includes versions of songs by the Pixies, Neil Young and the Legendary Stardust Cowboy, along with BOWIE originals that recharge his basic themes of obsession, alienation and mortality."
--Richard Cromelin, LOS ANGELES TIMES, 6/16/02
"The album starts with 'Sunday' and ends with its title song, both hushed and haunted by mortality. In 'Heathen,' Mr. BOWIE sings, 'Still on the skyline, sky made of glass/Made for a real world, all things must pass.' The album was written well before Sept. 11, however, and the songs join a long line of Mr. BOWIE's apocalyptic scenarios...Between his own ruminations, he borrows 'Gemini Spacecraft,' the Pixies 'Cactus' and Neil Young's 'I Have Been Waiting For You'; in songs like 'Afraid' and 'I Would Be Your Slave,' he sings about love, insecurity and transience."
--Jon Pareles, NEW YORK TIMES, 6/9/02
"A masterpiece from a rock'n'roll master."
--Jim Collins, Associated Press/CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER, 6/16/02
"On Heathen, DAVID BOWIE has made a real DAVID BOWIE album-his first collaboration in 20 years with producer Tony Visconti, and by far his best work in ages."
--Lisa Robinson, VANITY FAIR, June 2002
"...his new songs...feature some of BOWIE's most dramatic vocals, exploiting the theatrical range of his patented bellow."
--Jim Farber, NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, 6/9/02
"...rank(s) among BOWIE's best...Heathen sports some of his finest songwriting since his seminal '70s work...A-"
--Ben Wener, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 6/7/02
"The unsettling, and unsettled, arrangements turn out to be a fine match for songs that suggest a shaky, alien post-Sept. 11 universe. BOWIE, a downtown Manhattan resident, has said-including in this magazine-that he wrote material for Heathen before that catastrophic morning, which suggests he's either clairvoyant or just a generally nervous person...the album allows BOWIE to return to his eeriest character-let's call it Grim Shady-and it's still the best role of his life. B+"
--David Browne, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, 6/14/02
"BOWIE ventures into all sorts of pop and rock areas with this terrific new record...the art is still up front in BOWIE's rock. A."
--Ed Symkus, BOSTON TAB, 6/17/02
"With Heathen, BOWIE has struck a neat balance between his wildly experimental inclinations and his ability to meld inviting melodies and thoughtful lyrics...assured and enjoyable...He's eager to forge ahead, but also happy to build on his rich musical past with songs that are well-crafted yet still full of unexpected twists and turns."
--George Varga, SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 6/13/02
"...BOWIE's lyrics are clever, full of dread of the future and longing for escape...On the covers, Neil Young's 'I've Been Waiting For You' and 'Cactus,' a song by '80s post-punk band the Pixies, the futuristic soundscapes compliment good, straightforward rock songs."
--Benjamin Nugent, TIME, 6/17/02
"...sonically adventurous tunes..."
--Elysa Gardner, USA TODAY, 6/11/02
"BOWIE, at 55, is plugged into the zeitgeist once again-and conveying it in his classic tuneful, inventive style. This time, however, he's not just expressing the dread, he's confronting its abstract source and demanding change.."
--Robert Cherry, CLEVELAND FREE TIMES, 6/12/02
"Those who dig slow-tempo BOWIE ballads will find this disc graceful, maybe even a masterpiece..."
--Dan Aquilante, NEW YORK POST, 6/14/02
"...a grand and haunted album..."
--Jeff Gordinier, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, 5/31/02
"BOWIE continues to look for new challenges, which sets him apart from many of his '60s peers."
--Greg Kot, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 6/11/02
"...this respectable entry in the BOWIE canon scores with songs about love, fear, alienation, space travel and the minutiae of daily life, all examined by the Voice of a Thousand Faces that fans have come to love so well."
--Sarah Rodman, BOSTON HERALD, 6/17/02
" 'Slow Burn,' with its dollops of hot-oil guitar blasts from Pete Townshend, and 'Afraid,' with its orchestrated melodrama of fear and loathing, are modern elaborations rather than rehashes."
--Bill Dean, THE LEDGER (Lakeland, FL), 6/17/02
"...DAVID BOWIE has delivered one of his most consistent recordings in years.. Heathen is a free flowing blend of crisp originals like the harmony-filled pop flairs of 'Everyone Says Hi,' the heart tugging '5:15 The Angels Have Gone' and the sweet New York saga 'Slip Away.'"
--Kevin O'Hare, UNION NEWS (Springfield, MA), 6/9/02
"If anything, the music of DAVID BOWIE can be summed up in one word: dynamic.. For years BOWIE has dazzled his fans with his larger-than-life sound, which is present on his latest effort. Heathen represents DAVID BOWIE at his most quintessential."
--Jay Whiteside, DAILY CALIFORNIAN (Berkeley, CA), 6/14/02
"The wonder of the CD, and of the man's career, is that it all sounds precisely like BOWIE-cynical, searching, sonically imaginative and, in the end, hopelessly romantic."
--Tom Long, DETROIT NEWS, 6/16/02
"...Heathen is the best work he's created in at least a decade, if not longer, and could herald a new creative era for the living legend."
--Derek Simmonsen, WASHINGTON TIMES, 6/15/02
"...moody and melancholy...Warnings of blood, fear and fire appear against a disquieting backdrop of electronic effects and spacey keyboards, frequently with thrashing, grunge rhythm sections. Foo Fighters front man Dave Grohl even crashes in with a heavy-metal guitar on one track."
--Kyle Smith, PEOPLE, 6/17/02
"...a lushly evocative CD...features some inspired writing about his fears and anxieties...The album also marks a vital reunion with Visconti...The new album is a welcome return to art-rock form for BOWIE...The new songs range from the mellow, impressionistic '5:15 The Angels Have Gone,' to the briskly rocking 'A Better Future.' And there are two stellar cover songs in Neil Young's edgy 'I've Been Waiting For You'...and an acoustic-rock treatment of the Pixies' 'Cactus'...But the more subtle brilliance of the album is illustrated by original songs such as the thoughtful 'Slip Away' and techno-spiced 'I Would Be Your Slave'..."
--Steve Morse, BOSTON GLOBE, 6/9/02
"...Heathen boasts some of BOWIE's best work since 1993's neglected Black Tie White Noise...What results is challenging and inviting, off-center but potent, and more inventive than most current indie-rockers could hope to be in their wildest dreams."
--George Varga, SAN DIEGO UNION TRIBUNE, 6/9/02
"...come(s) up with his most haunting, honest record since Scary Monsters."
--Chris Nashwaty, FORTUNE, 6/10/02
"Reunited with producer Tony Visconti (Young Americans), David Bowie is back with Heathen, 12 surprisingly great songs that manage to brigde terrestrial rock'n'roll with sonic hijinks from some other galaxy."
--Chris Berend, ESQUIRE, July 2002
"...Bowie is still a zillion times more inventive, brave and rocket-to-Mars brilliant than anyone who's been prodded by the ubiquitous genius stick, like, ever. 55 and not out, Bowie remains rock's most worship-worthy oddity."
--Sarah Dempster, NME, June 2002
"Heathen proves that BOWIE's still got it. All of it. And in abundance."
--Kevin Maidment, AMAZON.COM, 6/17/02
"...the disc alternates between exuding a shimmering bleakness, as on the brooding opener 'Sunday,' and shooting out sonic sparks, exemplified by the wiry 'Slow Burn,' which features slashing guitar lines from Pete Townshend."
--David Sprague, BARNES AND NOBLE.COM, 6/17/02
"...BOWIE's finest hour since Scary Monsters..."
--Robert Wilonsky, DALLAS OBSERVER, 6/6/02
"...BOWIE returns with his first studio recording in three years and his best new record since 1980's Scary Monsters..."
--Joel Selvin, SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, 6/9/02