This is utterly breathtaking. Beck and an orchestra of 167 musicians have reworked David Bowie’s Sound and Vision from 1977’s seminal Low album into a dazzling arrangement worthy of Bowie’s legacy and the album’s colossal importance.
Conducted by his father, the distinguished David Campbell, the sprawling nine-minute work was crafted as a part of the Lincoln Motor Company’s “Hello, Again” marketing campaign to revive the sleepy Lincoln brand.
Astonishingly, even marketing is now capable of creating great art – or recruiting great artists to create great art at least.
Sound and Vision, along with Low, is among Bowie’s most harrowing pieces. It is layered with beautiful walls of sound, while underneath, the song’s bare and despondent narrator, withers in his own cracked nature. The record is also one of Bowie’s most personal, making no room for gimmickry and show, and simply letting listeners glimpse into the cracked psyche of the artist’s frightening downward spiral in the 1970s.
Now, Beck and his behemoth of an orchestra have re-imagined this song of despair into a work of triumph, and have done Bowie great justice in the process.
The reclusive Bowie himself will be releasing his first studio album since 2003’s Reality in March – have a listen to the first single, the scenic Where Are We Now?