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Peter Gabriel|So (Remastered)

So (Remastered)

Peter Gabriel

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Peter Gabriel introduced his fifth studio album, So, with "Sledgehammer," an Otis Redding-inspired soul-pop raver that was easily his catchiest, happiest single to date. Needless to say, it was also his most accessible, and, in that sense it was a good introduction to So, the catchiest, happiest record he ever cut. "Sledgehammer" propelled the record toward blockbuster status, and Gabriel had enough songs with single potential to keep it there. There was "Big Time," another colorful dance number; "Don't Give Up," a moving duet with Kate Bush; "Red Rain," a stately anthem popular on album rock radio; and "In Your Eyes," Gabriel's greatest love song, which achieved genuine classic status after being featured in Cameron Crowe's classic Say Anything. These all illustrated the strengths of the album: Gabriel's increased melodicism and ability to blend African music, jangly pop, and soul into his moody art rock. Apart from these singles, plus the urgent "That Voice Again," the rest of the record is as quiet as the album tracks of Security. The difference is, the singles on that record were part of the overall fabric; here, the singles are the fabric, which can make the album seem top-heavy (a fault of many blockbuster albums, particularly those of the mid-'80s). Even so, those songs are so strong, finding Gabriel in a newfound confidence and accessibility, that it's hard not to be won over by them, even if So doesn't develop the unity of its two predecessors.

© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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So (Remastered)

Peter Gabriel

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1
Red Rain (Remaster 2012)
00:05:40

Peter Gabriel, Producer, Piano, Vocals, Synthesizer, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - KEVIN KILLEN, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Chris Hughes, Programmer - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Levin, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - David Rhodes, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Jerry Marotta, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Stewart Copeland, Cymbals, AssociatedPerformer - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

2
Sledgehammer (Remaster 2012)
00:05:11

Wayne Jackson, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Peter Gabriel, Producer, Piano, Vocals, Synthesizer, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - KEVIN KILLEN, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, Guitar, Tambourine, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Levin, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - David Rhodes, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Manu Katche, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Coral Gordon, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Dee Lewis, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Mark Rivera, Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Don Mikkelsen, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - P.P. Arnold, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

3
Don't Give Up (Remaster 2012)
00:06:33

Simon Clarke, Chorus, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Tee, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Peter Gabriel, Producer, Piano, Programmer, Vocals, Synthesizer, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - KEVIN KILLEN, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kate Bush, Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Tony Levin, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - David Rhodes, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Manu Katche, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

4
That Voice Again (Remaster 2012)
00:04:53

Peter Gabriel, Producer, Percussion, Piano, Vocals, Synthesizer, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - KEVIN KILLEN, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Levin, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - David Rhodes, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Manu Katche, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - L Shankar, Violin, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

5
Mercy Street (Remaster 2012)
00:06:22

Richard Tee, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Peter Gabriel, Producer, Piano, Vocals, Synthesizer, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - KEVIN KILLEN, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - LARRY KLEIN, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Mark Rivera, Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

6
Big Time (Remaster 2012)
00:04:29

Wayne Jackson, Cornet, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Simon Clarke, Hammond Organ, Participant, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - Peter Gabriel, Producer, Programmer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - KEVIN KILLEN, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Levin, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - David Rhodes, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Jimmy Bralower, Drum Programming, AssociatedPerformer - Jerry Marotta, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Stewart Copeland, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Coral Gordon, Voices, AssociatedPerformer - Dee Lewis, Voices, AssociatedPerformer - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Mark Rivera, Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Don Mikkelsen, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - P.P. Arnold, Voices, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

7
We Do What We're Told (Milgram's 37) (Remaster 2012)
00:03:22

Peter Gabriel, Producer, Piano, Vocals, Synthesizer, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - David Rhodes, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Jerry Marotta, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - L Shankar, Violin, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

8
This Is The Picture (Excellent Birds) (Remaster 2012)
00:04:22

NILE RODGERS, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Peter Gabriel, Producer, Vocals, Voices, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Laurie Anderson, Voices, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Manu Katche, Drum, AssociatedPerformer - Bill Laswell, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

9
In Your Eyes (Remaster 2012)
00:05:30

Michael Been, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Tee, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Peter Gabriel, Producer, Piano, Vocals, Synthesizer, Background Vocalist, Participant, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - David Bottrill, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - KEVIN KILLEN, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daniel Lanois, Producer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Levin, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - Youssou N'Dour, Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - LARRY KLEIN, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal) - David Rhodes, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Manu Katche, Drums, Percussion, Drum, AssociatedPerformer - Jerry Marotta, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Jim Kerr, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - David Stallbaumer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Ronnie Bright, AssociatedPerformer, Bass (Vocal)

℗ 2012 Peter Gabriel Ltd

Album review

Peter Gabriel introduced his fifth studio album, So, with "Sledgehammer," an Otis Redding-inspired soul-pop raver that was easily his catchiest, happiest single to date. Needless to say, it was also his most accessible, and, in that sense it was a good introduction to So, the catchiest, happiest record he ever cut. "Sledgehammer" propelled the record toward blockbuster status, and Gabriel had enough songs with single potential to keep it there. There was "Big Time," another colorful dance number; "Don't Give Up," a moving duet with Kate Bush; "Red Rain," a stately anthem popular on album rock radio; and "In Your Eyes," Gabriel's greatest love song, which achieved genuine classic status after being featured in Cameron Crowe's classic Say Anything. These all illustrated the strengths of the album: Gabriel's increased melodicism and ability to blend African music, jangly pop, and soul into his moody art rock. Apart from these singles, plus the urgent "That Voice Again," the rest of the record is as quiet as the album tracks of Security. The difference is, the singles on that record were part of the overall fabric; here, the singles are the fabric, which can make the album seem top-heavy (a fault of many blockbuster albums, particularly those of the mid-'80s). Even so, those songs are so strong, finding Gabriel in a newfound confidence and accessibility, that it's hard not to be won over by them, even if So doesn't develop the unity of its two predecessors.

© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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