At LAT, "Pop culture dominance is a fickle thing, even for Bowie and Kanye":
On Jan. 8, his 66th birthday, David Bowie surprised music fans around the world with the announcement that he'd secretly completed a new studio album.Well, you gotta keep feeding the beast, just like blogging!
This was a big deal — the first record in a decade from a legendary rock star more or less thought to have retired — and wall-to-wall media coverage over the months to come reflected a pent-up desire to have Bowie back in our lives. When "The Next Day" hit stores on March 8, many critics called the album one of the singer's best, helping it along to an impressive debut at No. 2 on the Billboard 200. The man once known as Ziggy Stardust, it seemed, had risen once again.
Or had he?
Less than six months after its release, "The Next Day" — with a title that suggests moving ever forward into the future — seems almost to have disappeared.
Last week the record was nowhere to be found on the iTunes album chart. It hasn't really taken hold on the radio. And though a music video for the album's lead single, "Where Are We Now?," quickly racked up millions of views online, more recent clips from the record have made smaller impressions.
For the week ending Aug. 3, Google Trends rated Bowie's worldwide search interest at 19 on a scale of 0 to 100, well below youngsters like Miley Cyrus and Skrillex as well as peers such as Bruce Springsteen.
But Bowie isn't alone. This year a number of high-profile albums, movies and songs — pop-cultural properties that each appeared with the fanfare of an event — have had trouble gaining the kind of long-term traction that artists and their backers crave.