David Bowie / Remastered ‘Berlin’ albums available separately next month

In February, Parlophone will issue separate editions on vinyl and CD of the 2017 remasters of David Bowie‘s Low, Heroes, Lodger, Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) and live album Stage. These were previously only available as part of the A New Career In A New Town (ANCIANT) box set.

The exclusives in the box set are obviously not being released separately. They are the 2017 Tony Visconti remix (not remaster) of 1979’s Lodger, the Re:Call 3 compilation and the “Heroes” EP. Also, the box contains two versions of live album Stage but Parlophone are choosing not to bother making the original version available separately, and are just putting out the version which restores the original running order (this was originally released in 2005 but it’s worth remembering the ANCIANT edition is not only remastered but features two previously unreleased bonus tracks Jean Genie and Suffragette City).

“Heroes” is the ‘new’ version – it will not feature the controversial sound issue on the title track that blighted the editions within the box set. It will be the same as the replacements that have been sent out.

In terms of packaging, if these are consistent with previous releases, the CDs will be presented in standard jewel cases. They aren’t Japanese-style vinyl replica mini-LP CDs (as in the box) when issued individually.

If you are considering buying more than one or two of these CDs separately, SDE’s advice is don’t bother, just buy the box set which is only £65 on Amazon in the UK right now. The CD packaging is superior and you get the exclusive content and the box is lovely. You just need to claim your “Heroes” replacement disc (instructions here).

For vinyl, it’s a different matter since the box set is much more expensive, and as you will see below, they are well priced individually.

HMV vinyl bundle is quite attractive for £55

HMV in the UK have a special Low-Heroes-Lodger-Scary Monsters vinyl bundle that comes with an exclusive slip-mat. Good value at £55 (UK shipping only).

These individual releases will be issued on 23 February 2018.


Side 1
1. Speed Of Life
2. Breaking Glass
3. What In The World
4. Sound And Vision
5. Always Crashing In The Same Car
6. Be My Wife
7. A New Career In A New Town

Side 2
1. Warszawa
2. Art Decade
3. Weeping Wall
4. Subterraneans


Side 1
1. Beauty And The Beast
2. Joe The Lion
3. “Heroes”
4. Sons Of The Silent Age
5. Blackout

Side 2
1. V-2 Schneider
2. Sense Of Doubt
3. Moss Garden
4. Neuköln
5. The Secret Life Of Arabia

STAGE (2017)
Side 1
1. Warszawa
2. “Heroes”
3. What In The World

Side 2
1. Be My Wife
2. The Jean Genie *
3. Blackout
4. Sense Of Doubt

Side 3
1. Speed Of Life
2. Breaking Glass
3. Beauty And The Beast
4. Fame

Side 4
1. Five Years
2. Soul Love
3. Star
4. Hang On To Yourself
5. Ziggy Stardust
6. Suffragette City *

Side 5
1. Art Decade
2. Alabama Song
3. Station To Station

Side 6
1. Stay
2. TVC 15

* Previously unreleased


Side 1
1. Fantastic Voyage
2. African Night Flight
3. Move On
4. Yassassin (Turkish for: Long Live)
5. Red Sails

Side 2
1. D.J.
2. Look Back In Anger
3. Boys Keep Swinging
4. Repetition
5. Red Money


Side 1
1. It’s No Game (Part 1)
2. Up The Hill Backwards
3. Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)
4. Ashes To Ashes
5. Fashion

Side 2
1. Teenage Wildlife
2. Scream Like A Baby
3. Kingdom Come
4. Because You’re Young
5. It’s No Game (Part 2)

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Annoyed at HMV…. they’ve been advertising them in store for weeks at 15.99 each and preorder 4 (Low,Heroes, Lodgers, Scary Monsters)for £56. Toddle along on Friday to pick up the first 3 because I don’t need Scary Monsters only to find they are £19.99 each. Didn’t buy on principle, no wonder they are going down the pan.

Punk Anderson

And … they’re out now!

Has someone got their hands on Lodger – and is the ‘Red Sails’ intro still messed up?

I was thinking of using some of the Amazon discount cash from ANCIANT to get this one with the intact song on it. If, indeed, it is now intact ;-)

Neil Wilkes

The HMV prices are £4 (60% higher) what they state in this article, Paul.
£9.99 PreOrder on the studio aslbums, not the advertised £5.99


Still haven’t received my replacement cd and lp.
I sent my info to them on the first date that the replacement-program was announced december 8th.
After then I’ve received few emails, I understand that they originally somehow tried to lessen the mistake, by producing only small quantity of replacement.
They only sent email that they were waiting for more them to be produced.
Still, I wonder, how did they originally decide to prioritize on when and where they would send the replacements, since there’s some people who have gotten their many weeks ago.
Something not quite right there and they should be ashamed and actually compensate this harm much better.
Last email was on january 31, where they said that I should ask the whereabouths of the replacements in 2 weeks time again, so I sent them email, another, and yet another but no reply.
Right now I won’t believe any explanations from them, as they should have handled this thing more carefully. It’s now almost 5 months since the boxsets were released and most of us still haven’t received replacements.

Noel Fitzsyimons

I seemed to have missed how to receive a replacement for the Heroes album. Can anyone advise on what to do please?

Noel Fitzsimons

Thanks AndyB

Got the info

John Smith

Call me crazy, but the Rykos are cheap and plentiful. All of this seems like overkill.

Paul Spurgeon

The Stage Live 3LP box set pre order has just dropped to a very good £25!


Worth noting that the new version of heroes still isn’t perfect – there’s a noticeable volume drop during Sons of the Silent Age at 2:18 (in the left channel), which lasts a few seconds before fading back in – presumably another issue with the master tape…


That’s another error that was in the original that’s not been corrected. But take care. That’s referencing the music and missing the point. These boxed sets are only about the packaging, the music is clearly secondary.
It’s also a second longer than a first pressing vinyl and the RCA, RYKO and EMI cds, so clearly running slow unless every version to date has been incorrect.
So it seems that we are to either accept songs at the incorrect speed with sonic errors or be accused of Hoffmanesque quibbling.

I’ll be blunt, I was surprised and a little disappointed at this blog’s initial downplaying of the issues, referring to “perceived mastering errors” etc. These are actual mastering errors and have been listed in full in several places. Calling them ‘perceived’ and then running Parlophone’s clearly nonsensical explanation without question was in my opinion a missed opportunity for a blog that obviously has clout to get a decent outcome. Why go to the trouble to repair one track and not the others on this album? I can see no other explanation that that Parlophone do not care about the music and are the wrong people to be handling this important back catalogue.

The fact that the majority are happy does not make something right. It just makes it harder to be heard.

So i’ll pose this an an open question, maybe to be discussed separately if this blog cares. Is it okay to knowingly release music with mistakes and when these are found and confirmed, what should be an industry standard response?


Just ordered stage 3lp for £25 from Amazon.

Jimi Fletcher

Hello, I’m responding to this bit because the page won’t let me do it further up above (there’s no reply button under the relevant comment) but in regards to the 33 1/3 series, I know what you mean Kevin – some of the more academic ones are hard work. The one on OK Computer was a struggle. The ones that presume a knowledge in musical notation are tricky to enjoy too! Elsewhere, the Talking Heads one is the only one I still haven’t managed to finish! The ones I’ve loved in particular have been Entertainment!, Definitely Maybe, The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society, Tago Mago, Bee Thousand, The Velvet Underground and Nico and Highway 61 Revisited. There’s a few that are actually fictional, and of those, the one on Master of Reality is absolutely brilliant.

mitchell feldstein

anyone know if the stand alone lodger is the new tony visconti mix or just remastered?
i imagine the later but just curious.


If HMV are the most competitively priced, shouldn’t they be appearing in the shopping widget? Amazon get plenty of SDE click-throughs as it is!

I finally decided to buy the vinyl boxset last night. I had a £30 voucher for Fopp so knowing that they are part of HMV, I went into their London branch recently to check that the price had been slashed from £200 to £150. It hadn’t been so once I told the guy behind the counter he checked it on the system and agreed the pricing needed to be updated. I went back last night and saw it was now retailing at £150 but the edition they had behind the counter was unsealed. Worried it might be a return or perhaps been moved/thrown around a bit I asked if they had a sealed version and after ten minutes of hunting around they finally retrieved one. All that was left then was to carry the bloody thing home from Covent Garden. F@#k me, the weight of it! Hope it was worth all the tube changes and walk to Highgate, via a pub pit-stop at Victoria!


I e-mailed my request for replacement discs (LP and CD) on 9th December and finally received an e-mail yesterday stating that my order has been raised but “Unfortunately, due to high demand, we are waiting for more copies of the replacements to be produced. As soon as we receive these your copy will be dispatched to you.” This would seem to suggest that requests are not being processed in the order they were received so I may be waiting a while yet.

Adriano Cristino

Where to write to request a replacement copy of the HEROES cd from the box-set???



I think Paul deleted his post regarding this issue. But to try to help…

Those who have bought the ANCIANT box set and would like an updated disc of “Heroes” should send an email to:


Your email should contain the following info:

• SHIPPING ADDRESS (and any delivery instructions)
• PHONE NUMBER (required by some delivery providers)
• PROOF OF PURCHASE (email attachment / photo / scan / screen grab / etc.)

Please ensure that you limit the content of your email to these details only so that the Warner Music Customer Services team can process your order as quickly and efficiently as possible.


Weird. Did a search for David Bowie and the article didn’t appear in the list!


Ah! But if I do a search for “Bowie” alone, there it is! “David” isn’t in the title of the article. Must be a minimalist around here!

Duncan Day

I can’t hear anything wrong with Red Sails either (Shrugs)


Spotify has the faulty 2017 Red Sails with the clipped intro and the correct version from the 1999 remaster. If you compare the intros of both you will hear the difference and once heard, it can’t be unheard. The fact that Parlophone won’t acknowledge that is a failing on their part and not the fault of the listener that wants what they are paying for.

But even as a fan of the RCA cds, they are also flawed in multiple places. This excellent document pulls apart the different RCA editions and highlights sonic issues with all three of the Berlin trilogy cds. https://www.dropbox.com/s/4bvtwpc4wx6cbu2/RCA%20CD%20comparisons.pdf?dl=0#

The only way to hear the albums as they were intended to be heard is by picking up a second hand vinyl copy from the time of issue.


Finally received an email Tuesday that my replacement LP is being “raised” (I take that to mean “shipped”)…


Mine was “raised” two weeks ago and 2 days after I first inquired about the replacement disc. Don’t assume anything, just be patient. If you are getting e-mails, you must be in the system. I have yet to receive the replacement, but I go about life as usual. It will come. If not, we will b*tch and moan until it does.

Adriano Cristino

Where to write to request a replacement copy of the HEROES cd from the box-set???


Oh, seriously? How do these bean counters make their living? So now they are making available in single albums stuff that has already been available for ages, but the only new thing, the legendary Visconti Lodger remix, is not?
I had the vinyls, own the Rykos, and never bothered with what came past that, but really wanted the Lodger remix, as I did the Gouster, and they were not released.
Guess there’s a reason why I’m not in marketing, obviously they know things I don’t.

Nass Khan

Lodger Low Heroes Scary Monsters have not been available to buy on lp brand new since 1987


I like Stage, it’s a nice tour document. I think there have been three re-issues that have added one or two bonus tracks each. This must be the most drawn out overhaul of an album in history! Rebel Rebel is still missing…
Thanks for the detailed information Paul. You always allow fans to make well-informed choices.

don cooper

Can I be naughty and ask a Bowie question from the ‘Berlin’ era?
I am researching a story I intend to write and would ask does anybody know which specific September 77 date Bowie,Bolan and Producer Colin Thurston had dinner, CT later taking the boys round to Visconti’s Good Earth Studio in Dean Street (TV being absent)?
Most versions have this on 7th Sep when Bowie and Bolan returned to London from Granada’s Manchester Studio and the infamous final Marc Show segment-you all know the one.
However,TV in a T.Rex Recollection for a 1991 US Relativity Records Booklet insert had this “three days” before Marc died” which places it 13/14 th September. I know DB recorded his Bing thing around 11th Sep.
Tanx all in anticipation.

pedantic fusspot

“not been” – – should read “not being”, wih a g, unless you are southern perhaps…

Tim Weldon

I really do try to shop at High Street record stores when I can to support them but they don’t do themselves any favours. I received an email yesterday from HMV, offering a bundle of all 4 Bowie vinyl LP’s (Low, Heroes, Lodger, Scary Monsters) at a pre-order discounted price of £54.99 (working out at £13.74 each). If ordered online you get a free slip mat as well with the picture from the Berlin Years box set. I thought this was a pretty good deal. I had received some HMV Gift Cards for Christmas and always intended saving them to buy these reissued vinyl LP’s once they became available individually anyway, so I went online to order the bundle…but oh no, you can’t redeem HMV Gift Cards online! WTF! Granted I can use the Gift Cards to buy the bundle in store but then I don’t get the slip mat! Yes, I know – I could just cough up the money to buy online and use the Gift Cards for something else but 1) I can’t really afford to do that and 2) is it fair to place restrictions on customers like this? Can’t use a Gift Card to shop online? Come on HMV, this is 2018!!!


If this is their standard policy regarding gift cards then asinine doesn’t even begin to adequately describe such a policy.

Tim Weldon

Hi Lemmin, Yeah it is their policy because I phoned and asked them what was going on. I was told HMV’s website hasn’t been set up to accept Gift Cards! The guy I spoke to agreed with my disgust and admitted they really need to sort it out. Fat lot of help that is in the short term though!

Mike the Fish

I also complained to HMV that they weren’t accepting vouchers on line (and that they’re using premium numbers to contact a store now). It’s like they don’t want the business; why make it hard when there’s so many other options?

Led Wars

As an HMV employee I share the frustration with the gift-card-not-accepted-online situation. Our head office told us that it was something they were working on, but that was bloody ten years ago now, it’s never going to get sorted, realistically. On the ‘front line’ as it were, myself and my colleagues work mighty hard to know our product, know our customers, provide a quality service for the hardcore music buyers who like to collect and to hold their music in their hands, the ethos that SDE is all about. But all too often the slapdash attention-to-detail and lack of professionalism coming from the centre embarrasses us. I have often said that if we did our jobs as poorly in the stores as our colleagues at head office do theirs, we would have gone under years ago. It’s such a shame! I actually do care deeply about this stuff, I wish our governors cared half as much, but they seem not to give two fucks. I’m so sorry! :(


Anyone know if Amazon’s (UK or US) current stock – that they are actively shipping – contains the box with the corrected disc?

Jimi Fletcher

The box set I bought just before Christmas – when the £64.99 on Amazon deal had just started – arrived with the faulty disc. I had to ask for a replacement from Warners.


I received mine earlier this week. Patience.

The Golden Age Of CD replacements.

My replacement took just 5 days, just saying.

Kevin M

None of the boxes have any corrected discs. If the price slashing of them on amazon and in HMV shifts them, maybe they will do another print run?


Excellent question – I was just thinking the same thing, although I wouldn’t mind getting one of the bad discs (as a collectible item) as long as I can get the corrected one also.
So I’m sort of wishing I get a bad one!

Ian Harris

You mentioned the “Heroes” replacements have been sent out…I got an email acknowledgement after sending in a copy of my receipt but I haven’t had my CD yet. Has anyone else received theirs?


No, not yet. Got the confirmation weeks ago but still no sign of the replacement.


I received the replacement disc earlier this week.

Stevie B

I must have been lucky. I waited until the first working day after the New Year holidays to e-mail them (hoping it would be near the top of someone’s inbox and having received the box set several days earlier) and my replacement disc arrived just four days later.

Jimi Fletcher

Oh, I should add that I have already received my replacement disc, I was also lucky because Warners sent it out pretty sharpish! By the way, what is everybody doing with their faulty disc? Passing it on to someone who doesn’t care about the glitch? Keeping it for sentimental reasons? Using it as a novelty coaster?


Keeping it in the box in a paper sleeve marked “defective” while placing the new disc in the album sleeve. I’ve kept all my faulty discs. I’m also one of those who keep the stickers on the shrink wrap after carefully cutting them out. (I’ve developed a technique over the years to cut them out perfectly using super-sharp scissors.) Perhaps this site should be changed from SDE to OCD!


I’m getting weary of the comments regarding the sound of these albums. I bought the box and think it sounds fine, although slightly different. I have no plans to sell my EMI or Ryko (or, in some cases like ChangesOne and ChangesTwo, the original RCA) CDs, so if I do become unhappy with the sound of the new releases, I can revert back to older versions. I have a few of these on original vinyl which, to my ears, sound absolutely TERRIBLE compared to ANY later version, especially Lodger with its thin and murky playback. What do people expect with these releases? Perhaps some fan can create their own brand new “perfect” mix that will please every listener, everywhere.

Just my two cents.


Totally agree. I love these boxsets and they sound fantastic to my ears.


You would be cheaper buying the box set than buying these individually. Amazon UK prices are a joke.


They are available on HMV priced at £5.99 each apart from Stage which is £8.99.


Yes! The four studio albums for me please, and now onto the next chapter!

Kevin M

Scary Monsters is nothing to do with the so-called Berlin era Paul.. you know that, I’m just being a fusspot, sorry :)

Kevin M

Have you ever read that little book on Low in the 33 and a third series? It’s as much about the Iggy crossover as Low. Nobody seemed to review it particularly highly and I don’t bother much with music writing, but via a bargain bin I got it, thoroughly recommended. Best wishes.

Jimi Fletcher

I read that too – I’m a big fan of that series and the Low book was one of the first I bought. Another Bowie album – Diamond Dogs – is going to be under the microscope for this series, although we’re going to have to wait until 2020 for it to be published!

Kevin M

2020! Hopefully it’s another engaging one like Low, not an academic study type thing.


I find the 33 1/3 series very hit and miss. The Low one is one of the better ones. Fear of Music – Talking Heads was terrible (almost unreadable).
I believe there is one due regarding Tin Drum (Japan) but I dont hold out much hope for it being an interesting read.


“It will be the same as the replacements that have been sent out.” Or not.

Got confirmation yesterday that “Unfortunately, due to high demand, we are waiting for more copies of the replacements to be produced. Warner Music Customer Service” (sic).

I have no faith that my replacment LP and CD will arrive before 23 February.


Why are the UK CDs so expensive? (twice the price of the Canadian ones)


Is this Stage LP the one that comes in yellow?

Jimi Fletcher

I know this box set’s contents have proved controversial (too much bass on Low, the “Heroes” sound drop, the clipped intro to ‘Red Sails’), but what’s everyone’s thoughts on how these new remasters compare overall to the 1999 versions, which are currently (but not for long) the only available versions to buy separately in the UK on CD? The 1999 versions are not popular with some fans, but for almost twenty years they have the only option for someone who wanted to buy a new copy in the high street, at least in the UK. That will all change now as I presume the 1999 versions will be deleted, so ultimately are we better off with the 2017 versions in the end?

Steve W

Ah, you saw my message about the HMV bundle or – more likely – you got the notification yourself?

Anyway, I’ve already ordered the bundle, primarily to replace my copy of Lodger but couldn’t resist the 4 at that price! :)


I have some of the 1999 CD reissues and think they sound rather harsh and congested. The sound of the latest reissues is warmer and there is more space around the various instruments. You really can’t go wrong with these boxsets, both the presentation and sound are wonderful. Perhaps the only real complaint is they didn’t include most of the rarities one can find on the old Ryko reissues (but the 1999 versions don’t have any bonus tracks, so they are even more lacking in that respect). I should add I am comparing vinyl (for the latest reissues) to CD (1999 versions) which is maybe not a fair contest. But anyway…very happy with the boxsets.

Jimi Fletcher

I held off buying the set because a) they always end up going down in price and b) the reported errors. I got it when the price went down to £64.99 and it’s a lovely set showcasing my favourite Bowie era. The clipped intro to ‘Red Sails’ is annoying, but the extra bass on Low doesn’t bother me. It means I have a different kind of Low to add to the versions I already have! It’s a pity about the lack of rarities though- there’s a lot of wonderful songs that as you say were on the Rykos that are absolutely stonking. That sort of thing could have really made the box sets extra-special. But what we do have is, for the most part, lovely.

Kevin M


Try comparing the 1999 Lodger to the 2017 Lodger original mix. I agree the former CD is harsh, but to my ears it’s less congested or muffled than the 2017. Even if one ignores the tape flutter and clipped intro on the 2017, the album was never muffled at all on the 1999 CD, old German RCA CD, or original vinyl. But anyway, if you like the 2017 that’s cool.


I’ve listened to the Ryko version and the boxset version of “Red Sails”, can’t hear any clipping at all.

Kevin M

Well, it’s there. The intro beat starts a fraction late and doesn’t crash in as it was meant to and did on every previous release. If you don’t notice it then it doesn’t matter. But it happens to be my favourite song on the album and one of my favourite Bowie songs of the 1969-1980 period.