David Bowie, “‘Tis a Pity She Was a Whore” (2014): Something Else! sneak peek

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Dangerous, angry, relentless, David Bowie’s “‘Tis A Pity She Was A Whore” brings the awful suddeness of war into context at a particularly appropriate time, just as veterans remembrances arrive on worldwide calendars.

Bowie sits at its icy center point, recounting with a broken fragility the horror all around, even as the second of two new songs included in a forthcoming career-spanning set called Nothing Has Changed unleashes this torrent of Vorticist angles and shapes.

In that way, “‘Tis a Pity She Was a Whore” — named for an old John Ford play — shares a sense of post-modern edginess (if not the same free-jazz textures) with “Sue (Or In A Season Of Crime),” the earlier-premiered original that found Bowie collaborating with the Maria Schneider Orchestra. This, instead, is dance music for the end of the world, a song that hurtles along despite its obvious dismay.

More particularly, “‘Tis a Pity She Was a Whore” is a striking departure (once again) from the retrospective feel of The Next Day, David Bowie’s most recent studio effort — and all the more reason to be excited for what comes next after what promises to be another longing look back from Nothing Has Changed.

Both of David Bowie’s new songs will be released on November 18, 2014, the same day that retrospective arrives. A 10-inch vinyl version of “Sue (Or In A Season Of Crime)” backed with “‘Tis a Pity She Was a Whore” follows on November 28, for the Black Friday edition of Record Store Day.

Nick DeRiso

Nick DeRiso

Nick DeRiso has written for USA Today, American Songwriter, All About Jazz, and a host of others. Honored as columnist of the year five times by the Associated Press, Louisiana Press Association and Louisiana Sports Writers Association, he oversaw a daily section named Top 10 in the U.S. by the AP before co-founding Something Else! Nick is now associate editor of Ultimate Classic Rock.
Nick DeRiso
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