Blackstar is a ground-breaker/game-changer/startling reinvention of Bowie’s own oeuvre/legacy/past that never/rarely/occasionally fails to astonish/enlighten/surprise, the sort of album the Thin White Duke/Ziggy Stardust/that bloke who appeared as an extra in Extras has not produced/managed/achieved since the last one/Scary Monsters/Station to Station. His band is the greatest/wildest/oldest one he’s had surrounding his muse/soundmystique since Spiders from Mars/Let’s Dance/Tin Machine II, and on this startling/incredible/world-changing new/new/new album Bowie does for jazz/hip-hop/the post-Adele blues what ‘The Laughing Gnome’/‘Boys Keep Swinging’/some cack from the 1990s or 2000s did for rock/R&B/folk music way back when.
Gone are the genial/friendly/Savile-scary wigs and face-paint/makeup/knuckledusters of the past 50/100/300 years, this is a brand new/invigorated/recharged/reborn refreshingly/pleasingly outward-looking/inward-looking Bowie as he tackles/creates/mumbles/whistles chirpily through songs like the title track/challenging new single, the haunting/rambling/drivel-laden Blackstar and the saucily-/provocatively-/smartly-/surprisingly-titled ‘Tis Pity She Was A Whore (a track/song/ode about Angie/Mick Jagger/David Cameron?). Blackstar is truly/totally/awesomely ominous/haunting/chilling/spine-tingling and also the longest/most extensive/dullest song he has recorded/done/puked out since 1976’s epic/mind-bending/old track Station to Station. The track itself feels like it could be two/10/millions of songs stitched/joined/hastily tacked together while simultaneously/conclusively/definitely not feeling/sounding/smelling like two songs stitched/tacked/welded together.
The music video meanwhile looks like Nirvana’s Heart-Shaped Box/The Residents’ Commercial Album/Robin Thicke’s ‘adult’ version of Blurred Lines crossed with Pan’s Labyrinth/Pirates of the Caribbean/Captain Pugwash as reimagined/made/directed by Alejandro Monteverde/David Lynch (of course)/Tom Cruise.
From the occasional/frequent/random blurtings/blarings/farts of the saxophone/sax/type of brass instrument I need to check up on, it is clear/apparent/pitifully obvious that Bowie has been mugging up/listening to/mainlining/ripping off jazz giants/stalwarts/figures such as Coleman/Basie/Sam Smith and absorbing/breathing/liquefying their inspiration/muse/licks 24/12/0.005 hours a day/week. Not to mention Scott Walker/Scott Walker/Scott Walker’s difficult/unlistenable/so soulful later/early/middle period.
Blackstar does not make for easy/pleasurable/happy listening (and we’re not just talking about the title track!). Songs like Sue (Or In A Season of Crime)/Dollar Days/check album sleeve for other song titles take multiple/many/numerous listens to become acquainted/familiar/conversant with – this is not a record/album/experience that will just/immediately/surreptitiously come over and lick your shoes/tickle your tonsils/butt-serve you vodka, although if you let it, it might. Multiple/compound/myriad listens in the serious moonlight/on drugs/on a tight deadline with a Bowie-loving editor to please will reap their own rewards/just desserts/25p a word, though. On Blackstar, Bowie has once more proven/displayed/verified/recognised his ability/chameleon-like charms/desire to go far beyond his brawling/mewling/sheep-like fan-base and their dull/undemanding/useless expectations and create/mumble/whistle chirpily a whole new style/genre/gender-bender of music, and style/fashion/genius. But you need to stay/remain/persist with it or you will just not understand/recognise/comprehend the genius of his genius on songs/tracks/musical milestones like Lazarus/Dollar Days/check album sleeve for another song title.
God/Christ/Ziggy above, this is such a marvellous/wonderful/incredible record, the best I/we/the general populace as a whole have/has heard since his last/the one before that/Station to Station, a total/real/genuine/authentic game-changer/ground-breaking/reinvention of his legacy/past/oeuvre (you’ve done this already – Ed) that shows most/all/more than all of today’s pop/rock/zydeco swing stars up for the shallow/torpid/money-chasing fakes/losers/stupid vacuous cunts they really are. A real ground-breaker of a ground-breaker. (You’ve done this one too – Ed)
A genius from a genius.