“We were listening to a lot of Kendrick Lamar. We wound up with nothing like that, but we loved the fact Kendrick was so open-minded and he didn’t do a straight-up hip-hop record,” longtime Bowie producer Tony Visconti explained to Rolling Stone. “He threw everything on there, and that’s exactly what we wanted to do. The goal, in many, many ways, was to avoid rock & roll.”
It seems the Compton native isn’t the only progressive act to influence Bowie’s new LP. A new article in Uncut magazine (via Pitchfork) notes that the Thin White Duke also took a cue from Death Grips — yes, the outfit known for its brash, industrial hip-hop and all-around DGAF attitude in terms of NSFW artwork, cancelled tour dates, and surprise albums.
The same Uncut piece also reports that Bowie references the Boards of Canada cut “Alpha and Omega” on a ★ song entitled “Somewhere”. Additionally, the tracklist features “Lazarus”, which is also the name of the off-Broadway production he’s co-writing and contributing new music to.
★, which also includes percussion from LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy, is due out on January 8th.
Below, revisit the accompany short film for the LP’s title track.