African Night Flight
Look Back in Anger
Boys Keep Swinging
Produced by David Bowie and Tony Visconti
Recorded September 1978 at Mountain Studios, Montreux, Switzerland and March 1979 at Record Plant Studios, New York City
Mixed at Record Plant Studios, March 1979
David Bowie (vocals, piano, synthesiser, Chamberlain, guitar)
Adrian Belew (guitar, mandolin, rhythm guitar)
Carlos Alomar (guitar, rhythm guitar, drums, vocals)
Brian Eno (ambient drone, prepared piano, cricket menace, synthesisers, guitar treatments, horse trumpets, eroica horns, piano)
George Murray (bass, vocals)
Dennis Davis (drums, percussion, bass, vocals)
Sean Mayes (piano)
Roger Powell (synthesisers)
Simon House (violin, mandolins)
Tony Visconti (bass, mandolins, rhythm guitar, vocals)
UNCUT magazine interviews Bowie in 2001:
DB: I think Tony and I would both agree that we didn't
take enough care mixing. This had a lot to do with my being distracted
by personal events in my life and I think Tony lost heart a little
because it never came together as easily as both Low and Heroes
had. I would still maintain though that there are a number of really
important ideas on Lodger. If I had more e time I would explore
them for you
you can probably pick them out as easily.
DB: I think it's the lack of instrumentals that give
you the impression that our process was different. It really wasn't
though. It was a lot more mischievous though. Brian and I did play
a number of 'art pranks' on the band. They really didn't go down
too well though. Especially with Carlos who tends to be quite 'grand'.
DB: Not really an accident but I did stumble upon
it. I had put one of my reel to reel tapes on backwards by mistake
and really quite liked the melody it created. So I played quite
a few more in this fashion and chose five or six that were really
quite compelling. Dudes was the only one to make the album, as I
didn't want to abandon the 'normal' writing I was doing completely.
But it was a worthwhile exercise in my mind. It has the same title
as the song I wrote for Iggy. But as the one for Jim was a working
title, I passed it onto the Lodger song.
DB: Not at all. Mere whimsy.
DB: Little crickety sounds that Brian produced from
a combination of my drum machine ( I would and still do, use one
to write with when I'm on my own) and his 'briefcase' synth. You
can hear them on African Nightflight .
UNCUT magazine interviews Tony Visconti in 2001:
TV: I wished it was sonically better, the studios
we used were poor choices, but the content of that album is wonderful.
I play it a lot despite how bad it sounds to me.
TV: I guess so. We didn't do an ambient side on this
TV: A lot more chaos was intended. Brian was doing
some strange experiments like writing his eight favorite chords
on a black board and asking the rhythm section to "play something
funky." Then he would randomly point at a chord and the band had
to follow. This didn't go down too well, but we were trying all
sorts of different things. Yassisin was a deliberate attempt to
make a hybrid form of music - Reggae/Turkish. Fantastic Voyage and
Boys Keep Swinging are the same song harmonically and structurally,
as well as a third track that was never used. Adrian Belew was a
champion because he'd do whatever strange thing that was requested
TV: That's the chattering sound on African Nightflight,
a sound and rhythm pattern on David's Roland beatbox, played very,
very fast. On the track sheet it said, "Enraged crickets."
TV: Probably. Fortunately Carlos could play good
TV: I have no idea. Ask David.