East Valley Tribune - 6th Feb 2004

David Bowie gives Dodge a dose of "Reality"

By Thomas Bond

British rock legend David Bowie was like a well-dressed bride in concert, offering a sold out Dodge Theatre crowd something old (lots of classic hits), something new (several songs from his new album, "Reality"), something borrowed (a Pixies cover) and something blue (weepy ballad "The Loneliest Guy").

Taking the stage in a ragged swashbuckling outfit a la Johnny Depp in "Pirates of the Caribbean," Bowie had the audience on its feet from the get-go with "Rebel Rebel." Thin as a rail and sporting a typically stylish coif, the singer doesn't look a day over 40 even though he's 57-years-old. Maybe he looks so young because he's nearly always been ahead of the times and a great part his appeal over a 30+ year career is that he rarely repeats himself.

"It's always something different," said Petra Blair, of Chandler who is the same age as Bowie. "He never does the same old thing."

While his commercial fortunes have waxed and waned repeatedly over the decades, Bowie's appeal is timeless and the proof lied in the multi-generational makeup of his fans at the show. Being remarkably attractive doesn't hurt either.

"He's a sex god," said Nicole Lindbergh, 25, of Gilbert. "I've wanted that man since I was eight years old!"

Bowie paced his show exceptionally well, balancing lesser-known new material with plenty of hits and slowing things down for a couple of spells to let the crowd recoup energy for another barrage of uptempo tunes.

Highlights included a rousing take on "All The Young Dudes," a very funky "Ashes to Ashes" and "Under Pressure" with bassist Gail Ann Dorsey handling the late Freddy Mercury's vocals on the Bowie/Queen hit.

Noting that he's a New York City resident, Bowie closed the show with a pair of tunes that show opposing views of his adopted homeland: "I'm Afraid of Americans" and "Heroes."

For his single encore, the singer and his six-piece band played four songs in a row from his classic 1972 record, "Ziggy Stardust." That suited Uwe Blanck, 51, of Chandler just fine.

"That's one of the best rock albums of all time," he said.

Following "Suffragette City," the disc's title track and it's unforgettable guitar hook finished the night with a bang.

Opener Macy Gray - her face nearly lost beneath a gigantic afro - offered an inspired set of sensual funk that had the crowd grooving. "Sex-O-Matic Venus Freak," "She Ain't Right For You" and "Oblivion" were highlights and Gray and her nine-piece band's energy and obvious joy in playing were infectious.