Press Release: David Bowie’s Beauty And The Beast 40th anniversary picture disc due

 Beauty And The Beast 40th anniversary picture disc

The fact that Beauty And The Beast will be the next limited edition 40th-anniversary 7″ picture disc (due January 5th, 2018), will come as no surprise to those of you who have been following this series of releases.

As you know, there were just two singles taken from the “Heroes” album in the UK. Following the September 1977 release of “Heroes”/V-2 Schneider (Peak UK chart position: #24), Beauty And The Beast/Sense of Doubt was issued on January 6th 1978. (Peak UK chart position: #39)

As with many Bowie single releases, the track sounded like nothing else on the radio at the time. As with its predecessor (“Heroes”), perhaps the public en masse wasn’t quite ready for the latest Bowie sound, with Fripp’s incredible guitar lines again taking centre stage and that Bowie/Visconti production ensuring Bowie was ahead of the curve yet again.

The advertising slogan: “TOMORROW BELONGS TO THOSE WHO CAN HEAR IT COMING”, never seemed so apt.

The song was certainly strong enough to be the “Heroes” album opener, and though it may have been considered an unusual choice for a single, it was just as viable as any of the other tracks on the album. Tony Visconti confirms that the line: “Someone fetch a priest”, was originally recorded with a different F-word to fetch. A wise decision to change it perhaps, or it may not have received quite the airplay that it did.

Though there had only been four previous Bowie picture sleeve singles released commercially in the UK (Starman 1972, Life On Mars? 1973, Space Oddity 1975, Suffragette City 1976), Beauty And The Beast was graced with one (basically the album cover), but the single still only just scraped into the Top 40 on the official UK singles chart. Nevertheless, Bowie picture sleeves would become de rigueur from Beauty And The Beast onwards.

An extended version was released as a promo only 12” single in the US and commercially as a 12” single in Spain. Listen to it now on Spotify.

The AA of the 7” picture disc is a previously unreleased live version of the “Heroes” album track Blackout, which was recorded on May 16th, 1978 at the Deutschlandhalle, Berlin during the ISOLAR II tour.

The images used on the A and AA sides of the picture disc are by Masayoshi Sukita and were taken in Japan in April 1977 (A-Side) and Madison Square Garden, New York in May 1978 (AA-Side).

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A-Side BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (2017 remaster)

(David Bowie)

Produced David Bowie & Tony Visconti

Mixed by Tony Visconti at Hansa by the Wall

AA-Side BLACKOUT (Live In Berlin 1978)

(David Bowie)

Produced David Bowie

Previously unreleased

Recorded live at the Deutschlandhalle, Berlin on 16th May, 1978

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Beauty And The Beast is released via Parlophone on January 5th, 2018