Anticipate David Bowie's BLACKSTAR

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This is one of those records that I feel it's true enjoyment and exploration for me is deferred until I'm ready to properly take it in, it's like walking away backwards from a huge object far enough to actually be able to see it all clearly, it's going to take a long while I think.

MaresNest, Saturday, 10 December 2016 13:39 (one year ago) Permalink

Think it's important to remember that there have been other records dedicated to contemplating the end of life from a knowing and immediate perspective -- Zevon's a good example, and Cohen just recently. Not to take away anything about Blackstar in the slightest, but while Bowie's own private contemplations can never be known now, given Visconti said that mid-2015 Bowie was in remission, it's just as possible that we'd be considering this as his 'brush with death' album as opposed to a 'this is it' album, with a later record taking another turn again. Ultimately circumstances have locked in a particular view that wasn't necessarily intended or meant, however much it was clearly a driving force thematically.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 10 December 2016 14:43 (one year ago) Permalink

Yes! Just focusing on Bowie many last songs off his records could've been a fitting epitaph.

If he'd died after making Reality, what a poignant set of last words "Soon there'll be nothing left of me, nothing left to release" would have been.
If he'd died after making The Next Day, what a poignant last record! Starting with "Here I am, not quite dying", distorting his own past on the cover and the many references to other phases in the songs and videos ("You Feel So Lonely You Could Die" with its Five Years drums, him bringing out the headless guitar again unfortunately in the Valentines Day video).
If he'd died after making Heathen, well, the title track is one of the ones that really gave me a lump in my throat after hearing the news.

You could go on to an insane extent. This record happens to be his epitaph just because he died after its release. Anything could be your last words, and even if you didn't mean it to be significant someone's going to attach their own meaning to it anyway.

Dan.S., Saturday, 10 December 2016 14:53 (one year ago) Permalink

Yeah. With Cohen people keep saying daft things about how it was "obvious" that this was his last album & its like, I know he was very ill but it was inconceivable that he wouldn't hang on for, say, another year? That seems a failure of imagination more than anything else. Critics were calling each album his "final statement" for over a decade, during which time he went on two international tours, playing 3.5hr sets & literally bounding on & offstage. I mean have you ever met an old person? They talk about how they're going to die soon like all the fucking time ime

banfred bann (wins), Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:04 (one year ago) Permalink

I do wonder what our reactions to Blackstar would have been if he'd stuck with the same general players as on The Next Day. The sonic novelty of the Blackstar performers in question and what resulted has, to at least some degree, given everyone a convenient talking point -- "trying something new, innovative to the end!" Yes but...he might not have.

None of which -- at all -- is meant to take away from such a remarkable album. But the combination of emotions that that three day turnaround from its release to the terrible confirmation has ultimately left a very long shadow that will be hard to escape.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:38 (one year ago) Permalink

The last rites have been read for Cohen since at least 1988, and Dan S. otm about Bowie. I was lucky to file a review five days before his death.

The burrito of ennui (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:39 (one year ago) Permalink

Come to think of it, Chris O'Leary pointed out on the Bowiesongs blog a while ago that if Bowie had passed in the late 2000s or at the turn of the decade, his 'last song' would have been that goofy-ass ditty for Ricky Gervais's Extras. And I'm sure people would have read THAT through a lens.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:43 (one year ago) Permalink

a beautiful swansong

banfred bann (wins), Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:45 (one year ago) Permalink

xxp that's insane, cohen was 54 in 1988

banfred bann (wins), Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:46 (one year ago) Permalink

My point is he's been in love with easeful death for a loooong time.

The burrito of ennui (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:51 (one year ago) Permalink

well his friends were gone

banfred bann (wins), Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:51 (one year ago) Permalink

Think it's important to remember that there have been other records dedicated to contemplating the end of life from a knowing and immediate perspective -- Zevon's a good example

Yeah, I was about to mention this... Blackstar is certainly not the first album written and recorded by a person staring death in the face and it won't be the last. There's also examples such as Queen's Innuendo, which although it tackles the issue of Freddie's health here and there, isn't a total rumination on mortality even though he was undoubtedly seriously ill when it was made.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Saturday, 10 December 2016 19:25 (one year ago) Permalink

Wazzabout the latest from A Tribe Called Quest?

I Walk the Ondioline (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 10 December 2016 19:58 (one year ago) Permalink

There's that 'Teeth' record, The Strain, made as mainman John Grabski was succumbing to reoccurring cancer, it's not subtle in the slightest but an intense listen.

MaresNest, Saturday, 10 December 2016 20:31 (one year ago) Permalink

Donuts, too - but that's a celebration, nothing morbid about it

flappy bird, Sunday, 11 December 2016 01:07 (one year ago) Permalink

You could go on to an insane extent. This record happens to be his epitaph just because he died after its release. Anything could be your last words, and even if you didn't mean it to be significant someone's going to attach their own meaning to it anyway.

This is why you should always end everything you write, even the silliest little clickbait news-blurb, with some stark, fatalistic sentence that's like a lingering sigh of pain and resignation. You know, just in case.

Don Van Gorp, midwest regional VP, marketing (誤訳侮辱), Sunday, 11 December 2016 12:44 (one year ago) Permalink

Come to think of it, Chris O'Leary pointed out on the Bowiesongs blog a while ago that if Bowie had passed in the late 2000s or at the turn of the decade, his 'last song' would have been that goofy-ass ditty for Ricky Gervais's Extras. And I'm sure people would have read THAT through a lens.

― Ned Raggett, Saturday, December 10, 2016 3:43 PM (yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Haha, I did genuinely think for a time that was going to be his last public act as a performer.

Pheeel, Sunday, 11 December 2016 13:47 (one year ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

No idea who did this but it's wonderful. Heard it on Sweeney's 2016 best of set on beats in space.
https://soundcloud.com/thisisthenumbernineteen/i-cant-give-everything-away-farewell-mix

willem, Thursday, 5 January 2017 10:45 (one year ago) Permalink

That's really lovely.

Eyeball Kicks, Thursday, 5 January 2017 11:26 (one year ago) Permalink

Yeah that was making the rounds on FB via a producer friend who got a hold of it. Supposedly a rejected remix by a big name who has to remain anonymous for legal reasons. It's beautiful.

Acid Hose (Capitaine Jay Vee), Thursday, 5 January 2017 15:30 (one year ago) Permalink

Any takers on why you think it might be?

Four Tet? Panda Bear?

altony rightano (voodoo chili), Thursday, 5 January 2017 15:45 (one year ago) Permalink

Really nice. Wouldn't be surprised at all if it were Four Tet, but you would think he would have just put it on his Soundcloud (he's done it before).

sam jax sax jam (Jordan), Thursday, 5 January 2017 15:50 (one year ago) Permalink

It was Tiesto.

dan selzer, Thursday, 5 January 2017 15:55 (one year ago) Permalink

I love my friends and love the fact that every now and again i get the chance to share something truly beautiful with you all. Here's a gorgeous unreleased remix of Bowie's 'I Can't Give Everything Away', an Xmas gift to you all.
Can't disclose who did it (I didn't) so please download it now before someone at EMI decides to arrest me. X

dan selzer, Thursday, 5 January 2017 15:56 (one year ago) Permalink

James Murphy?

vmajestic, Thursday, 5 January 2017 16:09 (one year ago) Permalink

How can you download from soundcloud? Do you need to be logged in?

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Thursday, 5 January 2017 16:14 (one year ago) Permalink

They have it enabled for download, so just click More > Download. Otherwise you need to rip it (there are somewhat shady sites that do this, or use Audacity).

sam jax sax jam (Jordan), Thursday, 5 January 2017 16:19 (one year ago) Permalink

David Bowie, "The Last Five Years" documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FjPcaiVWNRM

Everything Moves Towards The Sun (Ross), Sunday, 8 January 2017 20:15 (one year ago) Permalink

looks great, thanks for the heads up!

niels, Monday, 9 January 2017 07:42 (one year ago) Permalink

oh, this too

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIgdid8dsC8

(it's not that new, but first time it's officially released I think)

niels, Monday, 9 January 2017 11:13 (one year ago) Permalink

four weeks pass...

No Plan EP

Features The Single 'Lazarus' From Blackstar, As Well As The Three Final David Bowie Studio Recordings From That Album's Sessions

Pressed On 180-Gram Vinyl

Side B Features A Special Lazer Etching (No Music)

The No Plan EP was originally released digitally on January 8th, 2017 the day after would have been David Bowie's 70th Birthday. The release reached #1 on the iTunes charts of 11 countries including the UK, Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, Finland and Sweden, and broke the Top 20 in more than 30 territories. The No Plan EP is now being pressed on heavyweight 180g black vinyl that includes a special laser etching on side B and is housed in new artwork designed by longtime collaborator Jonathan Barnbrook.
The No Plan EP features the single 'Lazarus' from, and the three final David Bowie studio recordings during the sessions for his 28th and final album - "No Plan," "Killing A Little Time" and "When I Met You." The track "No Plan" was hailed by Rolling Stone who ranked it at #4 in their 50 Best Songs of 2016 as "a magnificent coda... one last transmission from the Bowie universe."

blonde redheads have more fun (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Tuesday, 7 February 2017 19:00 (one year ago) Permalink

not surprised they'r eputting these out by themselves, but none of those three "new" songs do much for me at all.

akm, Wednesday, 8 February 2017 00:22 (one year ago) Permalink

They grew on me, needed repeat listenings.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Wednesday, 8 February 2017 04:31 (one year ago) Permalink

five months pass...

No idea who did this but it's wonderful. Heard it on Sweeney's 2016 best of set on beats in space.
https://soundcloud.com/thisisthenumbernineteen/i-cant-give-everything-away-farewell-mix

― willem, Thursday, January 5, 2017 4:45 AM (six months ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

http://pitchfork.com/news/watch-nine-inch-nails-cover-david-bowies-i-cant-give-everything-away/

NIN played the remix in concert: Reznor said the band had processed Bowie’s death in the studio, working out their own version of Blackstar song “I Can’t Give Everything Away.” “We didn’t release it,” Reznor said, “but we will play it for you tonight.”

so that suggests the remix is actually a NIN cover???

na (NA), Thursday, 20 July 2017 13:57 (one year ago) Permalink

Oh wow, would never have guessed that!

change display name (Jordan), Thursday, 20 July 2017 14:08 (one year ago) Permalink

Several of the guys who played on this are on the recently released vocalese album The Passion of Charlie Parker, which sounds great on first listen.

Under Heaviside Manners (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 20 July 2017 14:12 (one year ago) Permalink

Lazerus still gives me chills every time.

chap, Thursday, 20 July 2017 14:58 (one year ago) Permalink

It's all about those drums on 'Sue'

The Anti-Climax Blues Band (Turrican), Thursday, 20 July 2017 15:18 (one year ago) Permalink

five months pass...

This secretly might've turned out to be my aoty of '17. About two years on the day of its release now, after Bowie dying soon after, it was this moloch I mostly avoided, in 2016. I dipped my toes in it, sure, but it wasn't until that I felt comfortable to really dive in, trod down the many dark alleys and stumble through the many dream/nightmare scenes hidden within. It's absurdly beautiful and brilliant.

And the 'New Career' harmonica part in 'I Can't Give Everything Away' gets to me every fucking time.

♫ very clever with maracas.jpg ♫ (Le Bateau Ivre), Wednesday, 10 January 2018 00:29 (nine months ago) Permalink

When we heard it, those few days before he passed, my girlfriend said after "I Can't Give Everything Away" that she felt like it was a farewell message, a departure. She called it.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 10 January 2018 00:45 (nine months ago) Permalink

As austere and coldly beautiful as a late Stevens poem, this album. I listened it to last week driving home from work.

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 10 January 2018 00:49 (nine months ago) Permalink

yeah I need to return to this

gbx, Wednesday, 10 January 2018 00:50 (nine months ago) Permalink

love this lyric

"I know something's very wrong
The pulse returns the prodigal sons
The blackout hearts, the flowered news
With skull designs upon my shoes"

commmunicates the awareness of his own impending death so well it's heartbreaking

kolakube (Ross), Wednesday, 10 January 2018 00:57 (nine months ago) Permalink

As austere and coldly beautiful as a late Stevens poem, this album. I listened it to last week driving home from work.

― morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, January 10, 2018 12:49 AM (nine minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

That's as beautiful as it is true, re Stevens. I need to spin this in the car, at night, too.

♫ very clever with maracas.jpg ♫ (Le Bateau Ivre), Wednesday, 10 January 2018 01:09 (nine months ago) Permalink

Listening for the first time in a while now. Still so chilling and awe-inspiring. The final WOO!'s in Tis a Pity. Can't make it thru Lazarus.

flappy bird, Wednesday, 10 January 2018 04:54 (nine months ago) Permalink

"lazarus" is fucking haunted, song and video

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Saturday, 13 January 2018 21:43 (nine months ago) Permalink

every time Bowie comes in with that baritone guitar, especially in the last minute (GA-RUNG) -- it's like bells in a churchyard.

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 13 January 2018 21:45 (nine months ago) Permalink

Listened to it yesterday, and it more than hold up. I love how the horns are like a distorted version of the Let's Dance ones.

... (Eazy), Saturday, 13 January 2018 21:54 (nine months ago) Permalink

...yeah I dunno about this.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05ss3sk

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 14 January 2018 15:31 (nine months ago) Permalink

he's not a film star

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 14 January 2018 15:39 (nine months ago) Permalink


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