David Bowie’s twenty-fifth studio album Blackstar has been one of the most highly anticipated albums since it’s announcement in October of last year, and it’s finally arrived. The days have certainly been counted down with eagerness since news first broke of a new Bowie album and since then we’ve been gifted with two fantastic songs, Blackstar and Lazarus. But ever since the album was announced there’s been an unspoken level of excitement everywhere you go that only someone as well known and respected as David Bowie could produce. The album couldn’t be anything but fantastic, right? Keep reading.
Blackstar is the opening track and really gets things going perfectly. When this song was first released it took people by complete surprise, not only because it was totally unexpected but because of the song itself, the quality, the music, everything. At nearly 10 minutes in length it’s the longest song on the album but that doesn’t mean it gets boring or drags along at any point, it’s superb, and quite the introduction to the album as a whole. ‘Tis A Pity She Was A Whore is the second song which begins with a fast paced drum beat before other instruments are introduced. On first listen you instantly know it’ll be one one of the standout tracks on the album before you actually listen to the other songs, it’s that good. Bowie is on top form here and it could arguably be one of his best ever songs, certainly up there with anything he has produced since the 70’s.
- ‘Tis A Pity She Was A Whore
- Sue (Or In A Season Of Crime)
- Girl Loves Me
- Dollar Days
- I Can’t Give Everything Away
Lazarus is next up which was the second song released from the album and the first official single. The middle section contains some of the best chords and melody combo you’ll ever hear, certainly a goosebumps moment if there ever is one. The sax in the second half of the song is a nice touch and goes perfectly with the the rest of the music to the point where you really don’t want it to end. But when it does, and the song starts to come to a close, you eagerly await what’s next. Sue (Or In A Season Of Crime) contains some really dirty guitar playing over drums that don’t quit from start to finish. The drums continue to swirl around as the song builds and builds with an infectious riff to keep them company.
Girl Loves Me’s “where the fuck did Monday go?” lyrics sum off the general feel of this song. Slow, moody, excellent. Another highlight without a shadow of a doubt which is followed by Dollar Days which to my hears has a more classic Bowie sound to the rest of the album, helped along by a piano. The chords on this song in particular sound superb and a saxophone returns at the half way point before the song builds into mountain of noise to finish, but only until the song fades into the final track, I Can’t Give Everything Away. The presence of drum beats are a common feature on Blackstar and they return here for one final outing. The song itself almost has an 1980’s feel to it apart from the vocals but at the same time manages to sound as modern and relevant as everything else on the album. It’s a fantastic track to end the album on.
Released only eight days into 2016, Blackstar is already in contention for album of the year, it’s that good. The album as a whole is nothing short of magnificent and exquisite on every level. Each song adds something unique and all seven songs together form a majestic musical journey you want to embark on over and over again.