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ABOVE: Video for James Bond from the new Iggy Pop Album, Free, due out on Friday, Sept. 6.
The Guru of Wild

Iggy Pop releases a new album on Friday, Sept 6. That isn't all he's been up to. He appears in a summer zombie movie, has his own signature coffee and is releasing a book of lyrics due out in October.

By Frances Brennan

Their music is loud, boring, tasteless, unimaginative and childish. I kind of like it," critic icon Lester Bangs wrote in Creem about Iggy's early band, The Stooges in 1970. In a 2003 review of the band's Coachella performance of "TV Eye," the New York Times accurately wrote "it was more than clear that in the 33 years since the song was recorded, the genre has largely been variations on a theme. And the first two Stooges albums are the theme." The band was inducted in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2010.

Iggy Pop, the coffee, a collaboration with Stumptown Roasters is currently available in cafes and online. The coffee, with notes of date, nutmeg and a long, choclatey finish, comes packaged in a black bag designed by Iggy. A 12 oz. bag of Iggy Pop will cost you $19 USD. The single origin Indonesian brew from the Bies Penantan community of Sumatra is assembled for distribution by the female-led Katawa Cooperative. A portion of proceeds from sales go to Girls Rock Camp Alliance, an international network of organizations working to use music to empower kids experiencing gender-based oppression. Wow.

In October, he will release a book of lyrics, "Till Wrong Feels Right" through Penguin/Random House. The career retrospective, timed to coincide with the 50th Anniversary of the first Stooges album, includes lyrics to more than 100 songs, original photographs, artwork, Iggy's reflections on his career and more.

Iggy worked with Queens of The Stone Age frontman Josh Homme for his last album, 2016's Post Pop Depression, and the tour that followed. During press appearances during the tour, he talked seriously about wanting to take a step back from music and performing. In the press announcing Free, he said that the album was a result of his extensive Post Pop touring, which he said helped him "rid myself of the chronic insecurity that had dogged my life and career for so long." He said it also left him feeling drained,"I felt like I wanted to put on shades, turn my back and walk away."

On their Jonesy's Jukebox appearance together during the tour, host Steve Jones (Sex Pistols) called it the best Iggy show he'd ever seen.

The jazz-themed sound of Free, a shift from Post Pop, is no surprise. Pop began his musical career as a jazz drummer. He has said that the unique, percussive aspects of The Stooges music was rooted there.

Post Pop Depression is the standout among a strong of jazz-flavored releases, including Loneliness Road, a 2017 collaboration with Jamie Saft, Steve Swallow and Bobby Previte. Pop released Apres independently in 2013. The album of Serge Gainsbourg, Edith Piaf, Beatles and Sinatra covers sung in English and French was rejected by his label. According to Pop, much of it was sung in French because "it is French culture which has most stubbornly resisted the attack of the Anglo-American music machine." 2009's Preliminaires was proclaimed by Pop to come "dangerously near jazz," influenced by Jelly Roll Morton and inspired by the Michael Houellebecq novel, La Possibilite d'une Ile (The Possiblity of an Island). Pop is a Houellebecq fan.

Free has been called "uniquely somber and contemplative" and a stark change in sound from its predecessor, Post Pop Depression, featuring collaborations with jazz trumpeter Leron Thomas and guitarist Noveller. Pop has released three teases from the album in anticipation of its release: the title track "Free" the single and official video for "James Bond" shown above featuring PINS singer Faith Vern, and the single "Sonali." Pop has described it as one in which "other artists speak for me, but I lend my voice.”

Free, Iggy Pop's 18th album, comes out on Friday, Sept. 6 on Loma Vista Caroline International.

Till Wrong Feels Right, a retrospective book of lyrics due out in October.
Iggy Pop, the coffee.
Trailer for The Dead Don't Die. Iggy Pop appears as a coffee crazed zombie in the Jim Marmusch comedy released in June starring Chloe Sevigny, Bill murray and Adam Driver. It also includes appearances by Selena Gomez, RZA and Carol Kane.