David Bowie – Earthling


Developing musical styles previously explored on Outside (1995), Earthling showcases an electronica-influenced sound partly inspired by the industrial and drum and bass culture of the 1990s, further exhibiting jungle and techno styles. Lyrically, the tracks express themes of alienation and spirituality. One of them, “I’m Afraid of Americans“, was remixed for release as a single by Nine Inch Nails‘ Trent Reznor, who appeared in its music video. The artwork depicts Bowie wearing a Union Jack coat co-designed by Alexander McQueen.

Earthling charted better than its predecessor and reached the top ten in several countries. Its accompanying singles featured numerous remixes and were supported with music videos. Bowie promoted the album through television appearances and on the Earthling Tour in 1997. Although the album was mostly received positively on release, later reviews find Earthling lacked innovation in a time when the drum and bass craze was well-established; others consider it a worthwhile addition to an underrated decade. It was reissued with bonus tracks in 2004 and remastered in 2021 for inclusion on the box set Brilliant Adventure (1992–2001).


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