Concept albums have always been a curiosity in the pop music world, even in their 70s heyday there was something quite unnecessary and indulgent about them. In a post-LP, download-friendly, iTunes dominated landscape it seems even more so.
Not that such concerns would bother musical demi-god David Byrne, and why should it? The former Talking Heads frontman and all around good egg is releasing a concept album this Spring whose narrative centres around that ever popular staple of pop songwriting, former Philippine first-lady Imelda Marcos, who, if I scanned her Wikipedia page right, seems to be a sort of modern-day Marie Atoinette type tragic figure. And this isn’t any half-arsed affair either, it’s a four act (plus prologue), two-disc, rock opera-styled behemoth complete with accompanying hard-back book and all-star cast which is pretty much the who’s who of female pop world. Fatboy Slim also lends some of his talents, too.
We’ve already heard Santogold’s offering, Please Don’t and Florence from Florence and the Machine’s Here Lies Love which serves as the piece’s prologue. Now you can check out the entire album, or at least 30-seconds from each track if you so wish, by going here.
David Byrne & Fatboy Slim: “Here Lies Love” (featuring Florence Welch)
David Byrne & Fatboy Slim: “Please don’t”(featuring Santogold)