Music idol David Bowie has broken years of silence and speculation to release his first new single in a decade — with an album to follow.
The star, who shot to fame in the late 1960s with Space Oddity, surprised fans by suddenly releasing a new recording, Where Are We Now?, on his 66th birthday yesterday.
The track appeared on iTunes at 5am with the accompanying atmospheric video premiering on his website.
It was instantly well received by his devotees, with long-time fan Boy George declaring it “bloody gorgeous”.
Bowie's last album of new material, Reality, was released in 2003 and after touring the songs he largely withdrew from the public eye, concentrating on his family life in New York.
Unsurprisingly, 10 years since he was last heard, Bowie's voice sounds older and more world-weary.
In the video directed by Tony Oursler, with the musician's pensive face projected on to a puppet, he appears to be almost biting back tears as he looks back on his life.
A follow-up album called The Next Day is set to be released in March.