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"Diamond Dogs" is a 1974 single by David Bowie, and the title track of the album of the same name.

The lyric introduces the listener to Bowie’s latest persona and his environment; Halloween Jack dwells on top of tenement buildings in a post-apocalyptic Manhattanmarker. The guitar sound is heavily influenced by The Rolling Stones, and signalled Bowie moving away from glam rock and closer to a proto-punk Stooges-influenced sound.

The track was considered by many commentators to be an unconventional single, and only reached UK #21. According to NME critics Roy Carr and Charles Shaar Murray, "As a potential hit single, the title track from Diamond Dogs was something of a non-event. Too long, too bleak in vision, too tough to dance to... you know the drill."

While it failed to make the USmarker charts, the song became a central part of Bowie’s North American tour in 1974.

The B-side was a version of Bowie’s 1971 single "Holy Holy", re-recorded during the Ziggy Stardust sessions the same year.

Track listing

  1. "Diamond Dogs" (Bowie) – 5:56 (Only in Australia, a 2'58" edit was used (RCA 102462) instead of the full length album version)
  2. "Holy Holy" (Bowie) – 2:20


Production credits





Charts

Chart (1974) Peak

position
UK Singles Chart 22
Irish Singles Chart 27


Live versions

  • A live version from the 1974 tour was released on David Live. This version was also issued on the Dutch release Rock Concert. Another live recording from the 1974 tour was released on the semi-legal album A Portrait in Flesh.


Other releases



Cover versions

  • Beck recorded a cover version of "Diamond Dogs", produced by Timbaland, for the film Moulin Rouge! in 2001. The dancers in the film were also called the Diamond Dogs, as were the dancers on Bowie's 1974 tour.
  • Blind Willie's Johnson - Only Bowie (1995)
  • Dramarama - Live recording (1992)
  • Duran Duran - Thank You (Japanese version 1995)
  • Rancid Vat - "Bowiecide" single
  • Graveyard School - Hero: The Main Man Records Tribute to David Bowie (2007)


Notes

References

Pegg, Nicholas, The Complete David Bowie, Reynolds & Hearn Ltd, 2000, ISBN 1-903111-14-5


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