David Bowie’s 2002 album Toy, which his record company refused to release, has found its way on to file sharing websites this week; with representatives of the Thin White Duke refusing to comment, suggesting that Dame David himself may have given his blessing to the leak.

Conceived as an accompanying release to his 2002 long player Heathen, the album featured reworkings of many of his earlier songs dating back to his time in bands in the 1960s, but it appeared securing the rights to some songs was too difficult and after a dispute over royalties, record label Virgin shelved the record. Some of the songs recorded for the album appeared as B-sides to singles off Heathen, but fans, starved of new Bowie releases since 2003, have often wondered what might have been on the album.

This all appeared to change last weekend when a five star Australian based ebay seller named ‘stuarta001’ placed a purported copy of the album up on the site which ended up selling for $US100. As you can imagine it was a case of ‘wham bam, thank you ma’am’ as the album has now spread like wildfire over the net.