Submitted by tiggerlion on 16 March 2013 - 8:13am
What's it called?:
The Next Day
What does it sound like?:
The PR has been genius. He's back from the dead! But is it any good? Of course it is, it's superb. This is a proper rock album. Its production is suffocatingly tight, the band sound as though they are fed on raw meat and Bowie, himself, is humming with energy. It is a classic guitar, bass, drums set-up with relatively few embellishments (Steve Elson's brooding, menacing baritone sax features on two tracks and a handful have strings, but Visconti strings, strings with purpose). There are a couple of 'ballads' and a few pure pop performances, [The Stars (Are Out Tonight)], otherwise, it's mean, moody, provocative & best played loud. The lyrical imagery is dark, mysterious and unsettling, full of death, violence and strange behaviour. Bowie sings them with relish and commitment, adapting his voice to each song wonderfully well. He hasn't sung this well for decades. The Next Day is confident, brazen & aggressive but, most of all, it's new and it's now!! I could listen to it for ever!
What does it all *mean*?:
Class is permanent. This is a true return to form. There are nods to the past but it's as though Bowie has come to terms with his imperial phase and has decided to do what he does best, now in the present. It sounds as though there's more to come.
Goes well with …:
His seventies albums. Seriously. The Next Day is easily as good as Lodger, Scary Monsters or, even, Diamond Dogs. The pervading mood reminds me of Outside without the silly chat & fussy production but The Next Day sits comfortably with his best.
Might suit people who like …:
The great thing about the comeback & the genius PR is that Bowie has an audience again. He has everyone's attention and people are taking notice. I hope some youngsters are listening because there is a dearth of great guitar rock at the moment.