Bowie released ‘The Next Day’, his first album in a decade, in March and saw it debut at Number One on the UK’s Official Albums Chart. The album is now considered a leading contender for this year’s Barclaycard Mercury Prize, the shortlist of which is to be announced next week.
“People are always wondering what he’s up to,” McCartney said of Bowie, speaking in this week’s NME, available digitally and on newsstands from today (September 4). “You hear David’s in New York not doing much, then there are reports in the papers about health scares and that he might not be doing anything again. And then he comes out with that… and it really is a good album, with such freshness, and yes, it is inspiring.”
However, McCartney also explained that ‘The Next Day’ didn’t inspire him directly when he was making his forthcoming album ‘New’, which is due out on October 14, because he had begun working on the album some time earlier. “By the time he’d released it I was a year into my album, so it wasn’t a factor. I’m just in a very positive mood,” McCartney said.
McCartney’s ‘New’ album features collaborations with four producers: Mark Ronson, Paul Epworth (Adele, Florence and the Machine), Ethan Johns (Kings of Leon) and Giles Martin, son of The Beatles producer George Martin. Explaining why he decided to make the album with a palette of different producers, McCartney said: “There was a reason to work with each of these guys. Their age, well, it’s good working with younger people, but really I don’t think about it. Age goes away once you’re in the studio.”
He added: “I don’t think people sit around with Leonard Cohen and behave differently with him because of it,” McCartney continued, “and it’s the same with me. I’m more interested in playing than thinking about it.”