Robbie Williams has announced his new album, ‘XXV’, marking 25 years as a solo artist.
The former Take That star has recorded orchestral versions of his greatest hits with the Dutch jazz and pop orchestra, Metropole Orkest, to celebrate a quarter of a century since the release of his debut solo album, 1997’s ‘Life Thru A Lens’.
The ‘Rock DJ’ hitmaker, 48, posed naked on a statue for the album’s striking artwork, which is an interpretation of The Thinker by French sculptor Auguste Rodin, with just his arms and legs covering his manhood.
In a press release, Robbie said: “I’m so excited to announce my new album ‘XXV’ which celebrates many of my favourite songs from the past 25 years. Each track has a special place in my heart so it was a real thrill to record them again with the Metropole Orkest. Can’t wait for you all to hear it.”
The career-spanning collection includes the hits ‘Candy’, ‘Angels’, ‘Millennium’ and ‘Let Me Entertain You’.
The ‘Supreme’ hitmaker – who has Teddy, nine, Charlie, seven, Coco, three, and 17-month-old Beau with wife Ayda Field – is planning to hit the road in support of the LP, however, he has admitted he doesn’t want to miss out on his young kids growing up, so he doesn’t want to tour extensively and go long periods without seeing his brood.
Speaking to the Daily Star newspaper’s Wired column at the album’s launch at Dover Street Arts Club in London, Robbie said: “I’m planning to tour the album, but I’m also figuring out how to be a dad.
“I saw a documentary with an actor talking about how he didn’t see his kids grow up.
“I’ve been thinking about that an awful lot, especially coming out of COVID where I’ve had two-and-a-half years with my kids.”
The ‘Let Me Entertain You’ hitmaker insists he’s tamed his “charlatan” side and he sees himself as a “daddy going to work” now.
He said: “I felt a charlatan when I was having massive success. That feeling is still there, but it takes a back seat. I’m more in control now.
“It’s about the work now, the feeling of, ‘Daddy is going to work now.’
“Happiness wise, I’m the best I’ve ever been.”
On posing in the nude for the eye-popping album cover, he quipped: “It’s amazing what they can do with computers now.
“The cover wasn’t my idea but, when it was put to me, I was well up for it.”
As well as the album, Robbie also has his Michael Gracey-helmed biopic ‘Better Man’ on the way.
But he confessed he doesn’t feel worthy enough to have a film about his life made, despite selling more than 77 million records worldwide and tying with the late King of Rock and Roll, Elvis, for the most UK number one albums.
He said: “I was filming my parts in Melbourne recently.
“I was in the make-up room with the actors playing my mum, my dad and my grandma.
“Even Jason Orange’s prosthetic chin and Howard Donald’s wig were there.
“My whole life was there. It was brilliant, but also as mad as you think it is. I don’t know if I deserve that film.
“But Michael is a heavy hitter and it has every chance of being a success.”
If ‘XXV’ goes to No1, Robbie will have beaten Elvis.
He commented: “Elvis doesn’t stay dead.
“He’s constantly putting more albums out.
“But I’m really ambitious and competitive and I’m so pleased having the record is a possibility.”
The album is released on September 9 and available to pre-order now via robbiewilliams.com.
The full track-listing for ‘XXV’ is:
1. Let Me Entertain You
2. Come Undone
3. Love My Life
5. The Road To Mandalay
12. No Regrets
13. She’s The One
15. Rock DJ
19. Nobody Someday
The deluxe album additions are:
20. Lazy Days
21. Hot Fudge
22. Sexed Up
23. More Than This
24. Disco Symphony
25. Better Man
26. Home Thoughts From Abroad
27. The World and Her Mother
28. Into The Silence
29. Angels (Beethoven AI)