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David Bowie's Newest Outer Space Adventure

There's new music from David Bowie, a song called "Blackstar" but represented by the image of a large black star. It's accompanied by an odd and ritualistic film by the director Johan Renck. He's known for his work on Breaking Bad and has made music videos with Beach House.

Bowie often likes to draw imagery from the dark and cold of space. Here, we're on a rocky planet with little sign of life. There's a skeleton, a skull, an eclipse and a woman in a dress who has a tail. "On the day of execution, only women kneel and smile," Bowie sings. It's the sort of imagery best seen and self interpreted. The music is eerie and at times jazzy and spooky — it's not until five minutes in that we get some sense of more familiar song structure, a verse and a chorus. I like this and am happy to find one of the most adventurous living artists still pushing himself — and asking a lot of the listener.

Blackstar the album will be released on Jan. 8, 2016, Bowie's 69th birthday. The song "Blackstar" was also used in a British television crime show called The Last Panthers, which was also directed by Johan Renck.

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