Thursday, February 28, 2013

David Bowie: 'The Next Day' Review

The Next Day
David Bowie's new album The Next Day is easily going to go down as one of the best albums of 2013, and one of the best of Bowie's long career.

The first single, 'Where Are We Now?' is a melodic and hypnotic tune that goes down easy and had people wondering if that would be the direction of the album. Well, just listening to the songs that come before and after, 'Love is Lost' & 'Valentine's Day', is enough to convince you that this album is about much more than that. 'Where Are We Now?' is more of an anomaly, a nice way to take a break from the harder edged songs that come before it, such as 'The Stars (Are Out Tonight)'.

The rest of the tracks have blistering guitars and fast drum beats, with some even having a slight electronic dance influence ('Dancing Out In Space', 'If You Can See Me'). Don't worry though, those songs rock just as much as the rest of them. 'I'd Rather Be High', one of the album standouts, sounds like a more upbeat version of 'Where Are We Now?', hypnotic in a faster way. 'How Does the Grass Grow?' will pulse in through your headphones/speakers like nothing else, and features some of the best guitar work on the album along with '(You Will) Set The World on Fire', one of the hardest rockers in his entire catalog. It's also quickly becoming a favorite of mine. 'You Feel So Lonely You Could Die' follows that and brings in the piano with some nice soulful backing vocals to create a nice transition from such a loud rocker.

The standard album closer, 'Heat', slowly builds up with a dark & mysterious vibe running throughout it, fitting for the album closer. The Deluxe Version adds three additional tracks after this though if you need a little more.

The Next Day gives you everything you want from a David Bowie album, and stands with his best works. In terms of the vocals, they don't sound all that different from his earlier albums. So much for all those reports about if he was healthy of not, because he sounds outstanding here. The album can be streamed on iTunes now. It will be released on March 11 in the UK and March 12 in the USA, and is obviously a must buy.

*Update* His wife Iman has let slip Bowie may be going on tour at some point. Speaking to a magazine and talking about their daughter, she stated, "We are stuck, we can’t travel. Our schedule is around her, so I don’t know. We’ll have to go visit him, but we won’t be on tour with him because she’s in school."

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