David Bowie's now-defunct rock-opera trilogy's first installment 1. Outside is filled with uncanny mediations of rock music's chameleon. The inner sleeve booklet is titled The Diary of Nathan Adler, or the Ritual Art-Murder of Baby Grace Blue: A non-linear Gothic Drama Hyper-Cycle. Behind this long-winded title, is the story of a murder, narrated by several characters through both text, music and images. Bowie, however, is the narrator of all these different voices, using technology to distort his voice into these different characters as separate entities. His voice and presence haunts the entire album in uncanny forms, just as all images in the booklet are distorted images of Bowie himself, made into uncanny doubles. The story begins with the murder of Baby Grace Blue, who is enacted by Bowie himself. Symbolically, Bowie is murdered by himself, while Baby Grace haunts the entire album's Gothic and labyrinthine structure. My paper will focus on the mediated double of David Bowie, his ventriloquist voice and simulacral presence as character, creator and ghost. I will problematize the notion of an outside to the album, focussing on what can be termed the album's hauntological status.
David Bowie; Hauntology; Gotik; Rock; Simulacra; Gothic