Fashion - Songs Written by David Bowie is the next annual Fruits de Mer club-only freebie CD that you can only get by having bought pretty much what the label has put out this year. So this won't be on sale anywhere and is really a CD and not on vinyl like normal FdM releases. For some reason Bowie hasn't been covered before on FdM, so I guess it was about time for something like this to happen. The 15 songs on the disc performed by 15 acts cover most of Bowie's career from the the early days through big hits all the way to his 1977 Low album. Most of the featured bands and artists are FdM regulars like Sendelica, The Past Tense, Sidewalk Society, Jack Ellister, The Seventh Ring of Saturn etc., but there are also a few newbies (The NoMen, Consterdine). I must say that I'm not the biggest Bowie fan but you just have to give credit to the man and his music, so this actually is a pretty exciting album.
I won't go through all the tracks here, but some of my favourites include the pretty psychedelic "Can't Help Thinking About Me" by Sidewalk Society, the energetic "The Gospel According to Tony Day" (The Nomen), the tranquil "Tired of My Life" (Ilona V), the groovy "Black Country Rock (Cary Grace), the spacey and folky "Andy Warhol" with great female vocals (Mooch), the rather authentic sounding "Life on Mars" (Sheepshanks), the quite out-there "Drive-In Saturday" (Jack Ellister), the very cosmic "African Night Flight" (The Seventh Ring of Saturn) and the warped, fuzzed-out version of "Fashion" (Blue Giant Zeta Puppies). Okay, that's most of the tracks in my highlights list then, but I can't help it! The rest of the cover versions are not bad either. Sendelica ends the disc with their peaceful, acoustic live version of the classic "Ziggy Stardust", which is great too. To make things more confusing this free album is released in six different covers that will be sent to regular customers randomly. This sounds so fishy that only Fruits de Mer can come up with something like this!