Scott Walker: A Dandy Slips Away
The pop crooner revered by Bowie, Thom Yorke and many others has just died at the age of 76
To name just a few, Nick Cave, Thom Yorke of Radiohead, Neil Hannon of The Divine Comedy, Jarvis Cocker of Pulp, Alison Goldfrapp of Goldfrapp, Morrissey and even David Bowie owe him a lot. Even though he only left the planet on March 25, 2019, Scott Walker was never really earthly to begin with…
In 1967, after leaving The Walker Brothers (which picked up some orchestral pop hits but, like the Ramones, were not brothers at all), the singer born on January 9, 1943 in Cleveland, Ohio, embarked on an incredible solo career of Sinatra pop. He was a kind of solemn crooner revisiting Jacques Brel, Michel Legrand, Burt Bacharach and Tim Hardin.
Scott Walker would mature enough to compose all the songs of his 1969 masterpiece, Scott 4, considered by many to be his biggest album. Voluptuous instrumentation - light years away from the era obsessed with electric guitars - melodies full of sensuality and lyrics flirting with poetry or disillusionment; nothing really rock'n'roll nor fundamentally pop in the travels of this brilliant and incomparable renegade.
Since the mid-80s, the man was difficult to keep up with, as his albums surprised even his most hardcore fans. As with Bish Bosch released in December 2012, his art was extra-terrestrial. This was followed two years later by Soused for which he collaborated with the experimental group Sunn O))). Living as a hermit, Scott Walker became a cult icon a little more each year and without doubt was one of the most original singers of his generation.
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