Iggy Pop releases his new album 'Free' on the 6th September via Loma Vista. It's his first new solo LP since 'Post Pop Depression', Rough Trades Album of The Year 2016.
After a brief set of 'Tea Time Dub Encounters' with his Underworld collaboration back in 2018, and a recent fine re-issue of lost classic 'Zombie Birdhouse', our old friend Iggy returns, with perhaps his finest work...
Key collaborators include American trumpeter, sound designer, vocalist and composer Leron Thomas and Brooklyn/Austin-based guitarist, composer and filmmaker Sarah Lipstate, who works under the name Noveller. Her solo electric guitar project was the support act for the infamous Royal Albert Hall show of Iggy Pop in 2016.
Free is a Jazz-tinged film noir soundscape, coupling soft brass arrangements with Talking Heads hooks and grooves, amidst underwater city soundscapes with a sonic palette reminiscent of latter David Bowie and Brian Eno solo records. The talents of Iggy's new collaborators are in full flow throughout the ten tracks, providing him with a broad and cinematic mise en scène, not unlike the world created for Jade Vincent by David Holmes and Keefus Ciancia's Unloved project. It's a musical immersion, one that seems to occupy the space somewhere between past and present.
The 1 minute 48 slow noir Jazz introduction of Free sets the tone, before we're hit with the direct low-slung bass drive of Love Missing. The cinematic Jazz sweep of Sonalil guides us in to the cheeky jangle groove of James Bond. TV on the Radio-esque Mexican big-beat number Dirty Sanchez hits you hard, before Glow In The Dark and 'Page' go somewhere deep in to Iggy's soul. By which time you realise this is a special record.
The poetic trio of We Are The People, Do Not Go Gentle In To The Good and The Dawn seal the deal, as three statements of intent. Iggy finds a full freedom delivering a fresh, honest, challenging and sincere attempt to be Free with this album.
On the process that led Iggy and the principle players Leron Thomas and Noveller to create this "uniquely somber and contemplative" 10 track piece, Iggy says:
“This is an album in which other artists speak for me, but I lend my voice…
“By the end of the tours following ‘Post Pop Depression,’ I felt sure that I had rid myself of the problem of chronic insecurity that had dogged my life and career for too long.
“But I also felt drained. And I felt like I wanted to put on shades, turn my back, and walk away. I wanted to be free. I know that’s an illusion, and that freedom is only something you feel, but I have lived my life thus far in the belief that that feeling is all that is worth pursuing; all that you need – not happiness or love necessarily, but the feeling of being free. So this album just kind of happened to me, and I let it happen.”