This morning, David Bowie’s official website pointed visitors to a second preview track from his first album in 10 years, the Next Day (Support the Independent Ethos, purchase direct through Amazon via this link). “The Stars (Are Out Tonight)” makes its official debut on the web in the form of a more conceptual music video than the first preview track almost two months ago (David Bowie returns to music with new song on his 66th birthday). Like the first teaser track, “Where Are We Now?”, I cannot help put notice the self-referencing in this new Bowie song.
Directed by Floria Sigismondi, who began making music videos for Bowie in the mid-1990s, the video features actress Tilda Swinton. In the video, Swinton, long considered by some as a sort of female doppelgänger of Bowie, plays house with Bowie, grocery shopping and cuddling on their couch at home. The couple is stalked and terrorized by a younger couple who could also be considered another mirror image layer of Bowie. The “female” is played by none other than Andrej Pejic and the “male” Saskia De Brauw, a pair of models known for their androgynous looks who have posed as Bowie clones in many a fashion magazine. The short reeks of dualities that have long obsessed Bowie since he adopted characters to perform on stage, very early in his career. The near 6-minute clip is smart, funny and just a little twisted, as can be expected by rock’s great alternative artiste.
As far as the song’s tone… Indeed, as promised by Bowie’s longtime producer Tony Visconti, the song “rocks out” (read the “Rolling Stone” interview). So stream it above, as we continue to anticipate an early listen o Bowie’s March 8 release of the Next Day. His US rep has promised me preview by March 1, so stay tuned. In the meantime, please share any thoughts and feelings in the comments below. Is this a stronger return for Bowie since the Jan. 8 preview?