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Peter Gabriel - Up CD (album) cover


Peter Gabriel


Crossover Prog

4.00 | 573 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
1 stars Growing Up, Rating Down

Considering UP being released in 2002, Peter Gabriel's voice is about the same as it ever was throughout his career which is amazing considering his solo career spans for 25+ years. He has this quality of consistency and easiness in his voice that few other singers carry. Unfortunately, the singing is almost negligible when the music backing it does very little.

That's exactly my problem with UP; it never really establishes itself musically. Peter Gabriel seems to have jumped on the trip-hop-bandwagon and fully immersing his music in it. That itself isn't bad, but my little experience with the genre leads me to this conclusion; if the beat is interesting, I'll follow along. Else, it's torture. More often than not, I'm completely bored with the established beat and less impressed with the tempo picked. ''Darkness'' is a perfect example of my frustration; whatever genius other reviewers see in this song is completely lost on me as from the out-of-place noises to the incredibly sluggish tempo make me eager to find the skip button.

If you're like me and find that the album has little of a pick-me-up, you'll be even more uneasy with the song average being about 7 minutes (throwing out the ''not-that-bad-not-that-good'' ''The Drop''). The lone exception to everything is ''Growing Up''; the tempo isn't neckbreak, but it keeps me awake and it is the one song on here that really achieves something (can't say what) that the other songs only attempt to do. There's some interesting tongue-and-cheek subject matter in ''The Barry Williams Show'', and parts of others (notably ''Signal to Noise'') made me notice.

UP is nothing more than a frustrating experience coming from an artist whose past shouldn't be. The trip hop genre from a prog rock perspective was tackled better by Paatos around this time (''Quits''). I prefer the Peter Gabriel that pretended to be a lawnmower. I wouldn't start the Peter Gabriel solo journey here unless trip hop is your kind of music.

Sinusoid | 1/5 |


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