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Peter Gabriel - Passion - Music from The Last Temptation of Christ CD (album) cover


Peter Gabriel


Crossover Prog

4.08 | 496 ratings

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Matthew T
Prog Reviewer
5 stars I originally came across this album listening to world music and not from a progressive viewpoint. The album is a who's who of international artists with Peter Gabriel the lead artist, composer and arranger. As you all know this is the Soundtrack to the Last Temptation of Christ. Never seen the movie but this soundtrack is a one off. There is not another production that I would say is similar in sound and this is what a Soundtrack should be and not a collection of songs from certain eras put together.

The International artists supporting Peter Gabriel are stunning. Youssou N'Dour who was singing professionally at 17 in Dakar for the great Senegalaise Star Band, Baaba Maal and his Tama Player Massamba Diop from his Band Daande Lenol, Bill Cobham the Jazz drummer, Manu Katche and Hossam Ramzy doing percussion on various tracks and the renowned Pakistani Qawwali singer Nusret Fateh Ali Khan who passed away a few years ago. During the recording of the one track that he performed it was mentioned that he spoke to Peter Gabriel concerning the text because it made no sense to him but after he had performed it he was supposed to have been quite happy with the outcome.

Peter Gabriel uses Synthesizers, Fairlight, Audio Frame, Loops and other electronic instrumentation or format; eg. loops but the album does not sound electronic at all as they are mainly kept at the back of the compositions. The album has a distinct middle eastern sound yet there is not one Arabic singer used in the production. He also does a lot of the vocals and has a go at any other instrument he seems to get his hands on bass, whistles, flute, percussion and any thing else I think he found around Real World studios.

I have a preference for West African music so I will give a desciption of the tracks where those artists particapated in and a one of the others as there is 21 tracks on the album. I am sure you breathed a sigh of relief with my last sentence.

The album starts off on track 1 with a the double violin being used and then the track slowly builds. On track 5 where Baaba Maal appears the double violin appears again the vocals are only a very small part of the commposition. When Youssou N'Dour sings on track 7 this is the highlight of the album for me with Peter Gabriel sharing vocals. The singing is basically a chant over a really good rythmn. The best track for me this one just listen to Youssou N'Dours voice One more quick track description which is 15. Nusret Fateh Ali khan opens proceedings and then a choirboy with a soprano voice enters. This is all over a slow rthymn Youssou N'Dour enters later. What sounds spectacular is when the choirboy and Youssou N' Dour's vocals are together.

This album would have to be my favourite Peter Gabriel Album and this really is something original and even though the music is a combination of modern electronics and traditional instruments it does sound 2,000 years old even as we know in that time that this type of complex music did not exist.


5 Stars because this really is a one off.

Matthew T | 5/5 |


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