18 April 2013

The Buddha of Suburbia (1993), Outside (1995) and Earthling (1997)

Each of these projects saw the inquisitive, experimental Bowie that had struggled in the 80's bounce back with a series of innovative albums that tapped into Bowie's fascination with industrial rock and dance music.
'The Buddha of Suburbia' was inspired by the novel of the same name by Hanif Kureishi and came about when Bowie was asked to produce a theme song for the BBC's adaptation of the novel.
The title song was used but Bowie recorded an albums worth of songs that spun out of the book's themes and transpontine setting.
It also featured a couple of instrumental tracks, 'The Mysteries' in particular, that are reminiscent of the soundscapes he collaborated on with Brian Eno in the 'Berlin' period.

Eno himself returns for 'Outside' and brings his Oblique Strategy Cards with him.
An incredibly dense concept album that revolves around the idea of 'Art Murder' it may well be best known for 'The Heart's Filthy Lesson' which played out over the credits of David Fincher's 'Se7en' later in the year.

'Earthling' saw Bowie's fascination with Electronica take form although he eschewed the more familiar route of sampling and synthesizing his music, instead using his band to create the sounds he needed and then manipulating them into recognisable Jungle and Drum 'n Bass shapes.
'Dead Man Walking' is a great example of the evolution of the music on the album, featuring a guitar riff that Jimmy Page taught Bowie in the 60's and Bowie had previously used on the 1970 track 'The Supermen' from 'The Man Who Sold The World.'

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