“Iggy’s 18th solo album sees the rock’n’roll icon take control of his legacy with a contemplative and liberating collection that unshackles him from his past” ★★★★ – NME
8/10 – Uncut
“The original proto-punk [is] pushing the bar higher with each new exploration… a moody, intelligent, downbeat exploration of some dark electronic moods” – STACK Magazine
“Exercising his desire for freedom by trying something entirely new.” – The Music
“‘Free’ is his most surprising record in decades, and one of his most collaborative… propulsive… his voice sounds rich and heavy, with a depth and fragility” – The New Yorker
Iggy Pop has today unveiled his anticipated studio album, Free, released via Caroline Australia.
While Free follows the highest charting album of Iggy’s career, 2016’s Grammy-nominatedPost Pop Depression, it has virtually nothing in common sonically with its predecessor—or with any other Iggy Pop album. Iggy says, “This is an album in which other artists speak for me, but I lend my voice.”
In the album’s liner notes, Iggy reflects on the process that led him to create this uniquely sombre and contemplative entry in the Iggy Pop canon, alongside principal players Leron Thomas andNoveller:
“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 by 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.
For me as a music listener, this meant that I began to recoil from guitar riffs in favor of guitarscapes, from twangs in favor of horns, from back beat in favor of space; and, in large part, from the effluent of my own mind and problems, in favor of trying to interpret the poetry of others.
So this album just kind of happened to me, and I let it happen. The two principal players, Leron Thomas and Noveller, I discovered through searching for artists to play on the radio. The poetry by Lou Reed and Dylan Thomas came by serendipity; Don Fleming sent me a book of Lou’s poetry published by the Lou Reed archive, and I immediately recognized today’s USA, my own feelings and experience, and a world of emotion and keen articulation previously unknown to me. The Dylan Thomas piece was something I’d read a few years ago as a charity performance and it stuck with me. So through a process of flirtation, which involved admiring other people’s work, and yearning to be involved, but not wanting to get my feet encased in the cement of the industry, I made most of these recordings before any decision to form and release them as an album/collection was made. Basically I’ve always been kind of a groupie for fine musicians, and I still am.
But having made the decision to take the leap, I now try to put best foot forward and present this stuff to you, if you’re someone who is at all interested.”