David Bowie’s ‘Hunky Dory’ Era Explored With Expansive Box Set
A new David Bowie box set, Divine Symmetry, will celebrate the Hunky Dory era with 48 previously unreleased tracks and demos and new alternative mixes by original co-producer Ken Scott.
The collection, out Nov. 25 as a four-CD/Blu-ray package and digital equivalent, includes home demos, BBC radio sessions and various live and studio recordings. A vinyl LP edition titled "A Divine Symmetry (An Alternative Journey Through Hunky Dory)" is available on Feb. 24, 2023.
"Kooks," the fifth track on his 1971 album, was also recorded for the Bob Harris BBC Radio program Sounds of the 70s, with Bowie joined by guitarist Mick Ronson. The latter version, available to stream and download, was tracked in London on Sept. 21, 1971, and aired on Oct. 4 of that year.
You can hear it below.
Divine Symmetry’s first CD is called "The Songwriting Demos Plus," featuring demos and two recordings from San Francisco hotels; Disc Two is a live BBC Radio concert hosted by John Peel; Disc Three is "BBC Radio Session and Live"; the fourth CD features "Alternative Mixes, Singles and Versions"; and the Blu-ray is highlighted by "A Divine Symmetry (An Alternative Journey Through Hunky Dory)."
The box includes two books: a 100-page hardback with exclusive memorabilia and photos; and a 60-page replica composite of Bowie’s notebooks from the Hunky Dory era, fleshed out with handwritten lyrics, recording notes, set lists and costume drawings. Full track listing and preorder information are available at Bowie’s official site.
Divine Symmetry follows an array of Bowie-related projects, including the documentary Moonage Daydream, which hit American theaters in September. A companion album was recently issued digitally, with a two-CD set prepped for November and a vinyl edition following in 2023.