As many fans still reel from the palpable loss of David Bowie from the music world, Columbia Records has seen fit to release a posthumous EP entitled No Plan. Featuring four songs recorded during the Blackstar sessions, including “Lazarus,” “No Plan,” “Killing A Little Time” and “When I Met You,” the tidy extended play is a gift to those who wish Bowie was still here to receive some gifts of his own in honor of what would have been his seventieth birthday.
To coincide with the release, a video to accompany the rueful sounding “No Plan” offers an homage-heavy motif, specifically geared toward The Man Who Fell to Earth. Opening on the exterior of Newton Electrical (let us not forget that Bowie’s name in the aforementioned film was Thomas Newton), an appliance store with that sort of 60s display of TVs going on, the video keeps it simple, yet poignant.
The vocals of Bowie lamenting, “Here, there’s no music here” go hand in hand with the staticky, blue-screened televisions. And yes, it does feel as though there’s no music here without the Starman to bring it to us as though from some other planet. As the first passerby comes to look at what might appear on the screen, he is soon joined by others, and, gradually, images of New York start to break through the static as the lyric “Just out of view” is projected.
Soon, images of earth and Bowie himself make an entrance onto the screen, as those in front of it remain transfixed by what they see, and, even more likely, what they hear–Bowie’s voice a constant source of hypnosis.
At the end, a full crowd has formed and the screen has illuminated to a pink, space-age static color. But all in an instant, the crowd vanishes, the screen goes back to blue and then simply fades out. It’s a fitting if not melancholic metaphor for Bowie’s own end. Through it all, however, his music will always be “here.” And “No Plan” is the perfect birthday present to both Bowie and his many enthusiasts from all walks of life.