Muruch and EMI Records are happy to give Peter Gabriel fans an opportunity to win one of three So – 25th Anniversary Edition 3-CD boxsets! You can read my review and description of the boxset here and the giveaway details are below…
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Note: This giveaway is open to everyone, but all entrants must supply a valid email address to qualify. The winners of the giveaway will also be required to provide me with their full names and postal addresses for shipping purposes.
The giveaway will end on Friday, November 16th. The winners will be chosen at random and contacted via email.
It’s hard to believe Peter Gabriel’s landmark album, So, is 25 years old. So is the rare ’80s album that sounds as if it could be a new release. In fact, it wasn’t until I listened to the new 25th Anniversary Edition that I realized just how much of Peter Gabriel’s influence can be heard in the moody music of bands like Gotye and Fun. as well as the worldlier sound of Xavier Rudd. Peter Gabriel’s remastered and expanded So – 25th Anniversary Edition will be released in several formats (see below for details) on October 23rd.
So opens with the brooding, dramatic “Red Rain.”
The hit single “Sledgehammer” follows. It remains an unusually constructed pop song and the quasi-Gospel crescendo of voices at the end still feels like a surprise.
Yet it’s the quiet, heart-stirring ballad “Don’t Give Up” that remains my favorite. A duet with guest vocalist Kate Bush, the song is a moving examination of someone at the end of their rope and an emotional plea for them to hold on to hope.
Strange as it may be, “Big Time” was one of the first songs whose lyrics I memorized (the first was Starship’s “We Built This City,” yes I was an ’80s child). The catchy pop song enjoyed similar success to “Sledgehammer,” most likely due to its similarly semi-animated video.
The album’s final ballad, “In Your Eyes,” may forever be remembered for its use in Say Anything‘s iconic boombox scene, but it’s still a beautiful love song in its own right.
So – 25th Anniversary Edition will be released as a stand alone remastered CD, a deluxe edition 3-disc boxset with 2 additional live discs, and a limited edition “Immersion” boxset with all of the above as well as an extra CD of song drafts, a vinyl LP of the album and 2 DVDs.
I received the 3-disc boxset version (pictured above) of the So – 25th Anniversary edition for review. The 3-CD boxset includes the original album and liner notes, postcard pictures of Gabriel from the era and a two-disc live album from the final So tour concert in Athens in 1987. The live discs include such other Peter Gabriel hits as “Shock the Monkey” and “Solsbury Hill.” I’m not usually fond of live albums, but the sound quality of the concert recording is remarkable and confirms Gabriel puts on a great show.
Beninese singer-songwriter Angélique Kidjo’s cover of “Mysterious Ways” was the stand out track on the recent tribute collection In The Name Of Love: Africa Celebrates U2. The music on her 2007 release Djin Djin has a similar rhythmic African pop style. The title of the album refers to a bell that sounds at daybreak in parts of Africa. Joss Stone, Carlos Santana, Branford Marsalis, Josh Groban, Alicia Keys, Peter Gabriel, Amadou and Mariam, and Ziggy Marley join Kidjo on the disc.
The opener “Ae Ae” is fiercely jubilant, as Kidjo’s unparalleled wails and the joyous chants of her South African backing choir bounce along with the buoyant arrangement. “Djin Djin” is a slower, mellow groove that blends a touch of jazz – courtesy of Branford Marsalis’ saxophone and Alicia Keys’ soulful vocal accompaniment – into Kidjo’s signature African rhythms.
British singer Joss Stone duets on a cover The Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter”, but her voice seems glaringly out of place amid the heady mix of exotic percussion and horns accented by Angélique’s keens. Peter Gabriel does a much better job of holding his own on “Salala”, as his raspy vocals harmonize well with Kidjo’s on the track that he co-wrote with her.
The peals of Carlos Santana’s guitar caress Kidjo’s voice throughout “Pearls”, which also features operatic crooner Josh Groban. Groban’s otherwise lovely voice initially seems as ill-fitting as Stone’s, but finally falls into place as his howls rise to meet Angélique’s toward the end.
Ziggy Marley adds some Reggae flare to “Sedjedo”, but again it is the Beninese diva and her backing chorus that steal the scene before fully taking the spotlight on “Papa” and the strikingly beautiful “Arouna”. Kidjo’s haunting cries rip into “Emma” before the song softens into a balmier melody. The album closes with “Lonlon”, Angélique’s mesmeric African metamorphosis of Ravel’s “Bolero”.
Angélique Kidjo (feat. Peter Gabriel) – Salala (mp3 expired)