Sting has never been afraid to try new sounds, but with this fall’s 57th & 9th he is actually doing something he did a long time ago: making pop music. Since 2003’s Sacred Love, the Rock Hall Of Famer’s studio recordings have focused on Renaissance music, Celtic show tunes, and orchestral covers of his catalog. That left a lane for folks like Bruno Mars (“Locked Out Of Heaven“), Gotye (“Somebody That I Used To Know“), Ellie Goulding (“On My Mind“), and others to revive the hybrid reggae/new wave sound the Police perfected over three decades ago. Sting’s new album’s first single “I Can’t Stop Thinking About You” is a chugging and uncharacteristically unfussy rocker with distorted vocals and hooks more straight-forward than his highfalutin recent work. It’s pretty good! He played it live on KROQ this morning with rising Tex-Mex band the Last Bandoleros, and longtime collaborators Josh Freese and Dominic and Rufus Miller. Sting says it was inspired by looking at a blank page and waiting for inspiration. So a song about trying to write a song. Check out both the album version and this morning’s performance of tune, along with album info, below.
01 “I Can’t Stop Thinking About You”
03 “Down, Down, Down”
04 “One Fine Day”
05 “The Pretty Young Soldier”
06 “Petrol Head”
07 “Heading South On The Great North Road”
08 “If You Can’t Love Me”
10 “The Empty Chair”
Here’s the album cover:
57th & 9th is out 11/11 via Cherrytree/Interscope. The Studio Collection, an 11-LP vinyl box set collecting all his previous solo albums, comes out 9/30.
This clip from another song on the album, incidentally, sounds a lot like the Police.