David Bowie’s new album reportedly features song written about ISIS

New album 'Blackstar' will be released in January 2016

One of the songs set to feature on David Bowie‘s new album was written about terror group ISIS, according to a collaborator on the LP.

‘Blackstar’ is Bowie’s 25th studio album and will be released on his 69th birthday (January 8, 2016). It follows on from 2013’s ‘The Next Day’.

Rolling Stone has spoken to various Bowie collaborators about the record, with saxophone player Donny McCaslin stating that Bowie revealed to him that the title-track was inspired by ISIS.

The song’s lyrics include the lines: “How many times does an angel fall? / How many people lie instead of talking tall? / He trod on sacred ground, he cried loud into the crowd / (I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar, I’m not a gangstar)”.

“He told me it was about ISIS,” McCaslin alleged. However, Bowie’s fellow album contributors interviewed claimed to not know what the song was about.


Bowie’s producer Tony Visconti meanwhile confirmed that the previously revealed track ”Tis A Pity She Was A Whore’ would feature on the album, stating that the lyrics were inspired by A Clockwork Orange.

Elsewhere in the interview, Visconti also said that the record was in part inspired by rapper Kendrick Lamar. “We were listening to a lot of Kendrick Lamar,” Visconti said. “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. He threw everything on there, and that’s exactly what we wanted to do. The goal, in many, many ways, was to avoid rock ‘n’ roll.”

Visconti described Bowie as being “in fine health”, having “just made a very rigorous album”, but he said that he doubts that the star will ever play live again: “If he does, it will be a total surprise.”

Visconti also revealed that the album will be 42 minutes long and features percussion from LCD Soundsystem‘s James Murphy. There had been initial plans for Murphy to produce the LP.

Read the full Rolling Stone feature here.