November 23, 2015


Kendrick Lamar Partly Inspired David Bowie's 'Blackstar' Album

Getty Images
Getty Images

Rolling Stone has a big new piece delving into David Bowie's forthcoming 25th album, Blackstar, and we learned some damned tantalizing stuff. Producer Tony Visconti—whose Bowie credits stretch as far back as 1969's Space Oddity and include Young Americans, Low and 2013's The Next Day, Sir Stardust's first album after a decade away—dropped the following tease:

"We were listening to a lot of Kendrick Lamar. We wound up with nothing like that, but we loved the fact Kendrick was so open-minded and he didn't do a straight-up hip-hop record. He threw everything on there, and that's exactly what we wanted to do. The goal, in many, many ways, was to avoid rock & roll."

Based on the first bit we've heard (and seen, in short film form), they nailed it. The surreal, 10-minute title track is everything except standard rock music.

If you were fretting about 68-year-old Bowie's health, by the way, as some have been doing in recent years, don't. "He's in fine health," Visconti tells RS. "He's just made a very rigorous album." The Blackstar sessions frequently ran for seven hours, with the mag writing that "Bowie sang at full force throughout the entire day."

One last note to grow on: LCD Soundsystem mastermind James Murphy played percussion on a pair of tunes.