February 27, 2024

Opinion: Legendary David Bowie saves best album for last

Music Blogger, David Bradford discusses the late-iconic singer David Bowie’s last album and how it transcends his legacy.

Obtained via creativecommons.org

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To be completely honest, I am not the biggest David Bowie fan, but personal feelings aside, there is no denying that Bowie is an icon.

Musically, he consistently voyaged into unchartered rock-stardom waters, changing his sound and style numerous times. He was never the typical rock songwriter, bringing in sophistication as well as emotional depth to rock music that it sorely lacked.

Just like any icon, Bowie transcended his field. He didn’t simply create experimental rock music off the stage, he brought the meaning of rock stardom to life on the stage with his charismatic showmanship, bold fashion statements and ever-changing sexuality. He was enjoyable, yet shocking; a mainstream icon who could be consumed by the underground.

Sadly, a little over a week ago, Bowie passed away at the age of 69. Two days prior to his death, he released his 26th and final album titled “Blackstar.” Needless to say, after a number of classic albums, Bowie has saved his best for last.

Context is huge for this album, considering that Bowie had been dueling in an intense 18-month battle with cancer. Inherently, “Blackstar” is about facing one’s mortality face to face, knowing that the end is near. This theme echoes through the surreal lyricism and Bowie’s weary voice, which sounds as if it is just a few notes away from the afterlife.

Knowing that this album would be Bowie’s final statement just makes everything more haunting. It’s as if Bowie knew that once he released this album that his life would be tragically taken away. Every time I listen to the title track I just get these unsettling chills down my spin and this freakish feeling that the Grim Reaper is around ready to strike.

What makes this album even greater are the instrumentals, which sound experimental and modern, proving once again that Bowie does not believe in living in the past artistically.

Even though there are no territories he can venture in musically anymore, Bowie’s legacy will always live on. He will always be remembered for the great music he made as well as the shocking results of his persona and public appearance.

Rest in Peace, David Bowie.

Rating: 9.5/10

Recommended albums from Bowie’s discography: David Bowie, Hunky Dory, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, Aladdin Sane, Station to Station, Low, Heroes

The opinion of our writers/bloggers are not a reflection of the opinion of the Tennessee Journalist as a whole.

Photo courtesy of Sonia Golemme, obtained via creativecommons.org

Edited by Jessica Carr

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Follow me @DavidJBradford1 on Twitter, email me at dbradfo2@vols.utk.edu for any questions.