Release of video for Bowie's No Plan

A concert at Brixton Academy in London pays tribute to the late David Bowie on the day the musician would have turned 70.
An image of the late artist David Bowie, by Berlin-based portrait photographer Gavin Evans, in the former Hansa Studios in Berlin, Germany.
An image of the late artist David Bowie, by Berlin-based portrait photographer Gavin Evans, in the former Hansa Studios in Berlin, Germany.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

NEW YORK • Just hours before what would have been his 70th birthday, David Bowie resurfaced.

A new video for one of the musician's final songs and a brief EP of previously released tracks were made available late last Saturday, almost exactly a year since the release of his final album, Blackstar, and days before the anniversary of his death on Jan 10.

The video for the song No Plan was directed by Tom Hingston, who also worked with Bowie on videos for the songs I'd Rather Be High (Venetian Mix) and Sue (Or In A Season Of Crime).

The clip features a ghostly row of television screens flashing the lyrics of Bowie's song, which explores themes of disembodiment and confusion.

Above the screens is a sign for Newton Electrical, a reference to Thomas Jerome Newton, Bowie's character in the 1976 film, The Man Who Fell To Earth.

That character was resurrected as the protagonist of Lazarus, a musical featuring Bowie's songs that began its run in late 2015.

All of the songs on the new EP were featured on the Lazarus cast recording released in autumn last year.

The EP, also called No Plan, includes Lazarus from Blackstar, as well as No Plan, Killing A Little Time and When I Met You.

The four songs, all of which were recorded during sessions for Blackstar, are Bowie's final studio recordings.

He recorded Blackstar with the Donny McCaslin Quartet, a jazz combo he had scouted in New York, from January to March 2014 at the Magic Shop in Lower Manhattan.

In David Bowie: The Last Five Years, a new documentary exploring the final period of his career that was broadcast on the BBC on Saturday night, Johan Renck, director of the Lazarus video, said Bowie had learnt his cancer was terminal during the filming of the clip, three months before he died.

Reacting to the new release on social media, fans celebrated and mourned the musician anew.

"Happy Birthday, Starman," one Twitter user wrote. "I miss you every single day."

NYTIMES

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 10, 2017, with the headline 'Release of video for Bowie's No Plan'. Print Edition | Subscribe