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2017-06-22

Video “Blackstar”

The track was shot no less odious and interesting video clip, filled with the symbolism of death and religion, in which Bowie appears in the role of either a blind man, or a prophet (later, also a clip for the song ‘Lazarus’). The images created in it (dancing in ritual ecstasy of zombies, crucified human stuffed animals, a woman with a tail of a mouse that finds a shrine – a diamond-encrusted skull under the helmet of a space suit (hello, Major Tom!?), besides an unconditional aesthetic dignity Another – are the soil for a different kind of speculation on what the author wanted to tell his listener, shortly before his death.

 

Some note the visual similarity between ‘Black star’ and ‘Labyrinth’, a fantastic 1986 musical film in which Bowie played a major role. Some saw it as a reference to the Islamic state or the work of the English mystic writer Alcester Crowley.

Nevertheless, it seems to me that here Bowie once again appears before us, including as a great eccentric, master of odious staging, provocation, who enjoys his own work, the ability to surprise and shock.

‘Black star’ turned out to be a melodic album, consisting of only seven songs, the total sound time of which fits within short 40 minutes. The album cannot be called very “difficult” or “inaccessible” for perception, although on the whole, from the stream of modern pop music, it stands out unequivocally. You can even say that it sounds a bit ominous due to the combination of different rhythm sections, jazz harmonies and “uneven”, quirky-gaming vocals. Here, the musician needs to once again pay tribute, for the fact that he, in this case, acted as a real avant-garde from the music industry.

“Our goal in many, many ways was to avoid the Rock and Roll” – spoke about the album Visconti.

“Tis a Pity She Was a Whore” copies in its name the name of the tragedy of John Ford, an English playwright who lived like woman in the Middle Ages – early modern times. This composition is no less eccentric than the previous ones: bass, drums and saxophone, the jazz stylization predominates in the arrangement, against which the bizarre lyrics, a combination of strange, almost random words: “When she punched me like a dude / ‘Hold your man-hands! ‘, I cried. ”

I have heard that Bowie was interested in the work of William Burroughs and used the so-called “cut-up method” to write the texts. We cannot know if he followed this technique when preparing a new disc, but, perhaps, he managed to reach new heights in giving his lyrics a poetic “ambiguity”. ‘Seeing more and feeling less / Saying no meaning yes / this is all I ever meant / that’s the message that I sent.’

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