Due out on April 5, Spying Through a Keyhole: Demos and Unreleased Songs is a 4×7″ vinyl box set of some of Bowie’s earliest material. It will feature nine rare, monaural recordings, including mostly solo vocal-and-guitar versions of familiar songs (“Space Oddity” in its earliest known version, “London Bye Ta Ta,” “In The Heat Of The Morning”) as well as the heretofore-unknown “Love All Around,” a lyric of which gives the set its title.
According to the new press release, the photo that adorns the box front and the included print inside the set was taken by Ray Stevenson in Tony Visconti’s flat in the summer of 1968. Meanwhile, each of the singles’ labels are presented to reflect the way David sent out many of his demos to publishers and record companies, featuring his own handwritten song titles on EMIDISC acetate labels.
While very much a historical set – the press release admits these tracks were briefly released to streaming services last year, no doubt to retain copyright on them, and is also up-front that “the recording quality isn’t always of a usual studio fidelity” – it’s an exciting new move for posthumous Bowie projects, which have previously been limited to a series of album box sets, live shows and vinyl ephemera, much of it previously released.