David Bowie’s 1970 album The Man Who Sold the World is being reissued under its original title and with new artwork.
Bowie originally intended to call his third studio album Metrobolist, an homage to Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. For its US release, Mercury changed the title to The Man Who Sold the World without Bowie’s input – in fact, the original stereo master tapes were labelled Metrobolist, with the title ultimately crossed out.
The 2020 re-release has been remixed by original producer Tony Visconti, with the exception of the track “After All”, which Tony considered perfect as is.
While the most well-known cover image for The Man Who Sold the World is Keith MacMillan’s famous Haddon Hall “dress” photo shoot, which was used for the UK release of the album and subsequent international reissues, its original American release actually used a different illustration by Mike Weller. The Metrobolist reissue will once again use an image by Weller for its cover that looks closer to its original concept, although alternate, unseen images from MacMillan’s shoot will also be included within the vinyl sleeve.
Speaking in 2000, Bowie said that “Weller devised this kind of very subversive looking cartoon and put in some quite personalised things. The building in the background on the cartoon in fact was the hospital where my half brother had committed himself to. So for me, it had lots of personal resonance about it.”
The reissue will be out on November 6 on 180-gram black vinyl, as well as on limited-edition, numbered gold and white vinyl editions. Check out the new cover art below.