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Sting to Release First New Album in a Decade

Marissa Baecker, Getty Images

It’s been a decade since Sting last released a project with original material, and his upcoming album may actually stop short of being a true Sting album. ‘The Last Ship’ is scheduled for Sept. 24. It will be a collection of songs Sting helped write for a musical of the same name.

It’s not clear where or when the musical will be produced — Sting has been working to find investors to bring it to Broadway — but the plot follows action set in a shipyard in Wallsend, Eng., near a town Sting (Gordon Sumner) spent time in during his youth. The New York Times reports that the songs were written to advance the play’s plot, so each will contain a fair amount of story telling. Previously they reported the music was inspired by Sting’s 1991 ‘The Soul Cages’ album.

One song called ‘And Yet’ is a funky track sang by a sailor arriving home with thoughts of the woman he left behind. ‘Dead Man’s Boots’ is a difficult conversation between a father and his son who doesn’t want to work in the ship yard. The title-track is a waltzy folk song with Christian imagery that tells of the launching of the last ship from the yard.

The 61-year-old collaborated with John Rogan and Brian Yorkey over the last three years to write the music. “It is a homecoming story set against the backdrop of the decline of the shipbuilding industry in Newcastle during the ’80s,” the Times reports. Many of the songs were used in the musical, but some from Sting’s album have been cut from the production. Early buzz for the plot and songs has been positive, however some wonder if it has commercial appeal.

2003 marked Sting’s last full-length release of original material (‘Sacred Love’). He’s focused mostly on live albums and reworkings of his previous hits and albums since.

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