Saturday Deluxe / 21 Nov 2015

Bowie’s back!

David Bowie returns with a new album Blackstar in January. Above is an image from the newly released video and you have to say it’s the scariest he’s looked since the cover of the Never Let Me Down album.

Opinion has been divided (the video was described, not inaccurately, as “cobblers” by one SDE reader) although the majority welcomed Bowie taking risks and doing something that goes beyond the three-minute pop song. The first four and a half minutes of Blackstar are certainly quite immersive and meditative but the more melodic middle section (“something happened on the day he died…”) is really quite sweet and actually reminded me a bit of his work on Labyrinth!

The working-with-jazz-musicians thing is actually a bit of a red herring. The production is more like sophisticated/experimental pop to me – it doesn’t actually sound that ‘jazzy’. Anyway, I now love this new song and can’t wait for the album which is due in early January. Apart from a clear vinyl pressing, there’s nothing which boasts special packaging and no deluxe edition at all. I can all but guarantee a Blackstar deluxe will be issued in the latter part of 2016, but who’s going to wait for that!?

Read more about David Bowie’s Blackstar here.


SDE in The Big Apple!

I will be in New York City during the second half of next week, blogging ‘live’ from the Big Apple! It will be a busy week with loads ‘Black Friday’ deals on offer via Amazon, PopMarket, the Demon Music Store and more. On top of that there is Record Store Day on the Friday so I’ll be out and about checking out some of the few remaining independent Record Stores in Manhattan . I’ll be in town for a few days so I’m looking for recommendations for places to eat, drink and perhaps see some live music. Leave a comment if you can help :)


Great Offer Store

Talking of deals, you could do better than to head over to the ‘Great Offer Store’ for some early Christmas shopping. Many of you have been in touch to highlight some crazy prices on this Universal Music-run site. Examples include the INXS All The Voices 10LP vinyl box for £71, the Roxy Music Complete Studio Albums 8LP box for £60 and The Jam Setting Sons super deluxe for £25.

Check out the Great Offer Store.

Peter Gabriel competition

As promised last week, there is a fantastic competition now live on SDE where one of you will win a massive 12LP bundle of Peter Gabriel vinyl. These are the new reissues with each album pressed on 2LP 45RPM vinyl and they all come with hi-res downloads. A really great prize, I think you’ll agree, so if you haven’t entered yet, then what are you waiting for!

Enter the Peter Gabriel’s competition.

SDE ChartWatch

The brand new UK charts were announced yesterday. SDE takes a look at the movers and shakers with regards to reissues and box sets.

Elvis has his third consecutive week at number one on the physical UK albums chart, holding off One Direction’s Made In The AM (although the boys to depose him on the combined chart). This is all but guaranteed to be Elvis’ last week at the top, since a certain Adele will probably outsell the whole of the top 40 combined in this coming week with her predictably-titled 25 album.

ELO / new album Alone in the UniverseJeff Lynne’s ELO‘s Alone In The Universe debut’s at an impressive number three on sales while The Essential ELO slips back into the top 100 (just) at no. 99. Beatles and Dylan both drop on the physical chart, the latter stone-like, going from number nine to number 41.

Not a whole lot of action this week if I’m honest. The Kurt Cobain Montage of Heck demos set is a new entry at no. 44 while Led Zeppelin‘s remastered version of Mothership is a re-entry at 57, probably because it was only a fiver on Amazon.

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Paul, so many of the great record stores in NYC are gone—I still mourn the death of Vinyl Mania on Carmine (3 separate locations on 1 block).

If I were going for a day of browsing & buying I’d start in the West Village with a light brunch at CAFE CLUNY (instead of a mimosa, try the Spring Awakening), somewhat illogically at the intersection of W. 12th St and W. 4th St.

Six or seven short blocks (this is the old village, 1/2 to 1/3 the length of typical avenue-to-avenue city blocks) SSE down W. 4th—where Disc-O-Rama used to be, if you’ve been here in decades past—is BLEECKER STREET RECORDS, no longer on Bleecker because only Starbucks can afford that rent.

Further SE down the end of the block, turn the corner at The Slaughtered Lamb Pub for RECORD RUNNER next door (Jones St.). They have maddening hours, sort of noon to five when they feel like it, so check ahead. (If you like Slaughtered Lamb, that theme is taken to dark Disneyesque proportions at Jekyll and Hyde around the corner on 7th.)

By now you’re going to want pizza (you’re in NYC, you want plenty of pizza, but not tourist pizza, capisce?), so continue WSW down the 1-block-long Jones and cross Bleecker in a leftward direction for JOHN’S OF BLEECKER STREET, a local pizza joint. (Cash only. If the small front room looks packed there’s another room. If you like that pizza, or get there at mealtime and don’t want to wait on line, or need to expense it on a credit card, try their much tonier location, JOHN’S OF TIMES SQUARE, on 44th St., also at an off hour, with blazing pizza ovens in view, a stained-glass cathedral ceiling and a massive mural of Manhattan, as well as a cocktail bar). When you come out of John’s, Roger Thornhill it on Bleecker back across 7th for REBEL REBEL RECORDS.

In this neighborhood I’m sure you already know about the great Jazz places like the Blue Note, Smalls, and the Village Vanguard, all within a few blocks, or The Bitter End and similar places along Bleecker between MacDougal and LaGuardia.

Skimming the responses I saw a lot about St. Marks; you’ll need a drink after seeing what’s become of all the cool record stores around there. If you’ve been there you know that around the corner a block down is McSorley’s Old Ale House on E. 7th St., but I recommend the more civilized ANGEL’S SHARE around the corner a block up on Stuyvesant St. It’s easy, but unadvisable, to miss. Go in by the Village Yokocho and don’t be deterred by the scene at the top of the stairs; hang a Uey and go right through the door at the front or just make a drinking gesture to one of the waiters. They have a fireplace. Elsewhere in that area, I checked out Turntable Lab and found it disappointing. Momofuku Noodle Bar is supposed to be good.

The old DISC-O-RAMA was another favorite, but I’ve never been to the “new” one on 8th, so can’t give it a personal recommendation, but if it’s anything like the old place, don’t just duck in and get the wrong impression, be sure to head downstairs.

If you’re thinking of a nicer dinner, you could do a heck of a lot worse than GRAMERCY TAVERN or their dining room. They have a fireplace. Check out their menu (no, really) and make reservations (right now).

I know some people who visit NYC want to stick to Manhattan; if you do venture across a river, it should be to Brooklyn, where two musts are pizza at LUCALI’s or WILD RISE, and drinks at CLOVER CLUB (where, if you order the mac & cheese, you won’t be sorry). Their back room has a fireplace.

You should be pleasantly surprised to find any of these places open on Thanksgiving; anything you plan to do Thursday, check websites AND call ahead. Hope this reciprocates all the great info I’ve gotten from you about rare new releases and price drops! Safe and joyful travels, and Happy Thanksgiving!


Quiet week? Was probably the busiest for me. Rush R40 Live BR/3CD, Stones’ Leeds Br/2CD, Who’s Hyde Park BR/2CD, and Spock’s Beard’s First 25 Years DVD/2CD. There’s also the Queen at the Odeon. Not the greatest pricing. Holding there.

Guido Hoffmann

Enjoyed the new Bowie video and look forward to the new album!

Checked out the Great Offer Site, but the high shipping charges make it unattractive. (45,- Euro for the INXS Box)

Would like to hear reports from Record Stores in NYC, have a good trip!


As a native NY’er I suggest you go to Junior’s either in Brooklyn or Times Square. The Brooklyn location is the original one, but Times Square might be more convenient. They are known for cheesecake, but I also highly recommend pound cake + ice cream (if you’re sharing, and if not, more power to you) and the black & white cookie. The actual food is good too! If you want burgers/fries (and over the summer they had good ice cream too) go to Shake Shack. There’s more than one location in Manhattan. If you have it only once in your life, you won’t forget it.


Ordered the ‘Setting Sons’ SDE, $AUS96 shipped – which, considering i’ve never sighted a physical copy available in Aust., and the cheapest option I’ve previously been tempted by (and had funds available at the time) was over $150, I’m ecstatic

Carlton Fisher

My lasts several trips to NYC have been depressing on the record store front. I remember the days when you could find at least one or two on every single block.

I don’t know if you’re in the market for books or not, but if you are, The Strand bookstore is amazing and incredibly inexpensive. They do have some music and movies in the basement, though not a huge selection. I’m a poetry enthusiast, and whenever I’m in the city, I try to block out at least a good four hours to spend at the Strand to hit the poetry section. They have pretty much everything, most of it at half off or less.


Thank you for creating the first thing I go to every time I turn my computer on. As opposed to making suggestions, feel free to contact me for any meal through Friday. I’m happy to take you for anything from a great steak to an amazing pizza. Welcome to my home town.

Paul Kent

I’m loving Blackstar. So pleased to see he hasn’t taken the easy route of a Next Day 2 and is proving he can still surprise and challenge his fans. As for New York, I was there for a week in September and, though I cannot recommend any record stores (my wife was with me!), I do urge you to visit Scotty’s Diner at 336 Lexington Avenue. We loved it and had breakfast there every morning – their eggs benedict is out of this world!


Great Offer store looked a result until they wanted €100 to ship the Abba and Johnny Cash vinyl box sets. Shame!


I might just buy the Abba steelbox…. Thanks for the heasdsup. Bowie is a lot more interesting than Adele. If only we got media saturation of his new album instead of 25….

Chris Lancaster

Thanks for the heads up on the Great Offer Store. Just picked up the Dubnobasswithmyheadman box set for £25. Bargain!


If you like Korean food you should definitely have a meal at Mandoo Bar in Manhattan at 2 W 32nd Street. http://mandoobar.net
Junior’s on Broadway is a tourist haven but they do have some amazing desserts, especially the Devil’s Food Cheesecake! https://www.juniorscheesecake.com

Michel D.

Paul, you really should go to Rebel Rebel Records (directions here: http://www.yelp.ca/biz/rebel-rebel-records-new-york) on Bleecker, a Bowie specialist (hence the name of the shop), quite expansive though.

There is also a Rough Trade in NYC (64 N 9th St, Brooklyn, NY 11249), well worth going if your a vinyl fan (which I’m not) but also for second hand cds !!

Welcome to my side of the ocean and have a safe and fun trip!!


We were in NYC in the summer and the Dakota / Strawberry Fields were a must for this Beatles fan a heavy vibe hangs around the Dakota, probably more so now as the 35 anniversary approaches.


Got the CASH vinyl box from the Great Offer site – £45 and even though they are pressed at GZ they sound great

Bruno MacDonald

Greenwich Village has sadly died – where once you could spend happy hours wandering its record and book shops, now it’s all boarded up or cellphone stores. There may be one or two still around Bleecker Street, but I’d check online before you waste a trip down there. Enjoy everything else though!


Sadly the record stores on ST Marks Place are gone except for one: Sounds. This store is only open on Fri, Sat and Sun. Maybe Thu but not sure. I no longer buy cd’s in Manhattan bc I found the record store of all record stores in New Jersey: The Princeton Record Exchange on S. Tulane St in Princeton. Yes it’s not in Manhattan, about an hour by train. It’s worth the visit as it is by far the best vinyl/cd store in the tri-state area and you can find great deals. In fact it is the second best record store in the world in my opinion after “Concerto” in Amsterdam. That store is unreal. If you ever get a chance to visit Amsterdam, go to Concerto on the Utrechtse Straat. Not that long ago Little Steven also called it the best record store in the world. You can hang out there for hours and hours. Anyway, if you decide to go to Princeton, my house in NJ is half way. You can sleep over if you wish or I can pick you up from a trainstation. Don’t worry im not a perv. Married w. 3 kids. LOL. I’m just a massive fan of your website so happy to help!


Try Roxy’s diner in Times Square (if it’s still there) they do amazing cheese cake

Darren Briscoe

Thank God for David Bowie!!!! What a brilliant song and video! So looking forward to the album.


I agree with PC St Marks Place is a great area to hang around for an afternoon, but likewise not sure if all the great little record stores are still there. Try it anyway Paul if you have time.


Nice lead on the Great Offer site. I managed to load up my cart to with over $225 in terrific stuff. However, the shipping to the USA of $158 made an order a non-starter. Too bad. When will these site learn NOT to gouge in shipping???


Dear Paul
If you only eat at one place in New York, make it Amy Ruths, 113 W 116th St – the BEST fried chicken and waffles I have ever eaten.
Some other suggested places to eat in Manhattan:
Hill Country, 30 W 26th St – excellent BBQ and live music
Jing Fong, 20 Elizabeth St – good dim sum
Toloache, 205 Thompson St – excellent authentic Mexican in Greenwich Village.
Have a great trip!


Ippudo Ramen in the East Village
Ivan Ramen on Lower East Side, I’ve never had his ramen in NYC, but I went to his shop in Setagaya a couple of times and it was quite good.
That leads me to Ramen Setagaya on St Marks Place. Fantastic.
That said right across the street is KENKA, a fun loud izakaya.
Oh! Taisho is right next to KENKA and is good yakitori place (grilled skewered meat).
As for record shops, Generation Records on Thompson is still a good place to find new and used vinyl at a reasonable price.
Bleecker Street Records (now on 4th street) with huge persian cat (the other one passed) is a bit expensive. But that should be inexpensive having shopped recently in London for vinyl. Even crap things were £10 and everything else seemed £25 and up.


The Bowie song sounds like two seperate recordings woven together with the first half definitely inspired by the modern day Scott Walker. I like it but the video, like most videos, is superfluous.

Andy Stone

Love the Bowie tune and Inxs box set ordered thanks for the tip.


Another good deal on Amazon UK is the Georgie Fame box set now at £18.20 including autorip. Not in stock but at that price don’t mind waiting a few weeks


Paul, get the train to Coney Island and eat in Nathan’s diner. It’s a wonderful trip, well worth taking.

St Mark’s Place used to have several great record shops, but I think some of them closed since I was last there.


totally agree
I’ve only been to NY twice (radiohead in 2003 and moz 3 years ago)
and a cool record shop at St Marks that sold t-shirts was sadly not there the last time.

2 record shops I found/like are Bleeker street records (moved address
from B.St since 2012, I think) and Generation records.
I just put some pics up on my blog for you to see/get an idea of Paul
– George


Tim Barton

I love the new Bowie tune! It’s frankly stunning!