by David BowieDavid Bowie


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Since David Bowie spent the '90s jumping from style to style, it comes as a shock that Hours, his final album of the decade, is a relatively straightforward affair. Not only that, but it feels unlike anything else in his catalog. Bowie's music has always been a product of artifice, intelligence, and synthesis. Hours is a relaxed, natural departure from this method. Arriving after two labored albums, the shift in tone is quite refreshing. "Thursday's Child," the album's engaging mid-tempo opener, is a good indication of what lays ahead. It feels like classic Bowie, yet recalls no specific era of his career. For the first time, Bowie has absorbed all the disparate strands of his music, from Hunky Dory through Earthling. That doesn't mean Hours is on par with his earlier masterworks; it never attempts to be that bold. What it does mean is that it's the first album where he has accepted his past and is willing to use it as a foundation for new music. That's the reason why Hours feels open, even organic -- he's no longer self-conscious, either about living up to his past or creating a new future. It's a welcome change, and it produces some fine music, particularly on the first half of the record, which is filled with such subdued, subtly winning songs as "Something in the Air," "Survive," and "Seven." Toward the end of the album, Bowie branches into harder material, which isn't quite as successful as the first half of the album, yet shares a similar sensibility. And that's what's appealing about Hours -- it may not be one of Bowie's classics, but it's the work of a masterful musician who has begun to enjoy his craft again and isn't afraid to let things develop naturally.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/08/2016
Label: Rhino / Parlophone
UPC: 0825646507528
catalogNumber: 553042
Rank: 163472

Album Credits

Performance Credits

David Bowie   Primary Artist,Keyboards,Vocals,Guitar (12 String Acoustic),Roland 770
Everett Bradley   Percussion
Sterling Campbell   Drums
Reeves Gabrels   Synthesizer,Electric Guitar,Rhythm,Drum Loop,Guitar (12 String Acoustic),Lead
Chris Haskett   Rhythm Guitar
Mike Levesque   Drums
Mark Plati   Synthesizer,Bass,Mellotron,Guitar (12 String Electric),Guitar (12 String Acoustic)
Holly Palmer   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

David Bowie   Composer,Producer,drum programming,Slipcover Concept
Reeves Gabrels   Composer,Producer,drum programming
Mark Plati   Engineer,drum programming,Additional Production
Rex Ray   Image Manipulation
Alex Grant   Composer
Kevin Paul   Engineer
Tim Bret Day   Cover Photo,Inside Photo
Frank W. Ockenfels   Inside Photo

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