David Bowie set to release ‘The Next Day,’ his first album in a decade

Jan. 8 is David Bowie”s 66th birthday and he”s handing out a huge present: Ten years after his last studio album and well into a self-imposed retirement, David Bowie shocked his fans by releasing a new single Monday night and announcing a new album.

“Where Are We Now,” produced by longtime collaborator Tony Visconti, precedes the March 12 release of “The Next Day,” Bowie’s first studio album since 2003″s “Reality.” The new song/video is embedded below, but since that video is sometimes cutting out, you can also  hear the new song here. It’s available for sale on iTunes now.

The standard album, according to Bowie’s website, is 14 tracks with a 17-track deluxe edition also available. Both are available for pre-order on iTunes. “The Next Day,” on Iso/Columbia, is Bowie’s 30th studio recording.

The mid-tempo song is  low-key, but passionate and the good news is Bowie still sounds, well, like Bowie. There’s a certain lilting poignancy to the track and a bit of a fragility. The video features Bowie”s face on top of a furry stuffed animal sitting in a chair. He looks, well, older. Stick around toward the end, when we see the full Bowie, looking much like we remembered. Anyone know who the women beside him in the video is? The video, directed by Tony Oursler,  also features footage of an auto repair shop beneath the apartment Bowie lived in in Berlin.

*And by the way, Bowie fans, Monday marked the 41st anniversary of the release of “Changes.”

[More after the jump…]

“The Next Day” track listing

1. “The Next Day”
2. “Dirty Boys”
3. “The Stars (Are Out Tonight)”
4. “Love Is Lost”
5. “Where Are We Now?”
6. “Valentine”s Day”
7. “If You Can See Me”
8. “I”d Rather Be High”
9. “Boss of Me”
10. “Dancing Out In Space”
11. “How Does the Grass Grow?”
12. “(You Will) Set the World On Fire”
13. “You Feel So Lonely You Could Die”
14. “Heat”
15. “So She” (Bonus Track)
16. “I”ll Take You There” (Bonus Track)
17. “Plan” (Bonus Track)