June 12, 2009

David Bowie's "I Have Not Been To Oxford Town"

Over recent weeks, I've been playing David Bowie's "I Have Not Been To Oxford Town" repeatedly. The song, from his 1995 album Outside, is on a burned disc in my car (yes I still make mixes) and it's one of the few songs that doesn't grow stale after a few listens. Bowie is narrating as much as he is singing the lyrics over heavy set of drums and a guitar riff (which starts to shin at the 1:10 mark) that is brilliant. It reminds a bit of the riff on the Brian Eno and John Cale collaboration "Spinning Away," which I used to listen to during long scenic hikes in New Zealand. It has the same sort of futuristic and heavily-spaced charm that's perfect for letting your mind wander.

"I Have Not Been To Oxford Town" recently came on my radar after hearing a cover of it in the excellent cult-classic science-fiction movie Starship Troopers. It plays during the prom scene, except "Oxford town" is changed to "paradise." Who knew a gory movie about killing aliens would lead me back to David Bowie?

David Bowie - "I Have Not Been To Oxford Town" (from Outside)
John Cale & Brian Eno - "Spinning Away" (from Wrong Way Up)

David Bowie


  1. "This is your shadow on my wall..."
    Great song, I haven't listened to this in ages and it still sounds great.

    I check in to your blog on ocassion and always enjoy what I find here. Thanks for keeping it going.

  2. Thanks for reading and listening!

  3. Random Fact: Sugar Ray does a cover of Spinning Away on the soundtrack to the Leo DiCap movie The Beach. It's a solid late 90's early 00's sound.