Thursday, February 23, 2012

peter gabriel

After taking time off with his new family, Peter Gabriel made his triumphant solo debut with the first of four eponymous albums. Gabriel decided to leave Genesis before the tour for 'The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway'; but didn't tell the rest of the band until the tour was over. He felt that he needed to stay at home with his new daughter Anna and his wife Jill rather than go back into the studio or on the road.

The vehicle we had built as a co-op to serve our songwriting became our master and had cooped us up inside the success we had wanted. It affected the attitudes and the spirit of the whole band. the music had not dried up and I still respect the other musicians, but our roles had set in hard. To get an idea through "Genesis the Big" meant shifting a lot more concrete than before. For any band, transferring the heart from idealistic enthusiasm to professionalism is a difficult operation. I believe the use of sound and visual images can be developed to do much more than we have done. But on a large scale it needs one clear and coherent direction, which our pseudo-democratic committee system could not provide. As an artist, I need to absorb a wide variety of experiences. It is difficult to respond to intuition and impulse within the long-term planning that the band needed. I felt I should look at/learn about/develop myself, my creative bits and pieces and pick up on a lot of work going on outside music. Even the hidden delights of vegetable growing and community living are beginning to reveal their secrets. I could not expect the band to tie in their schedules with my bondage to cabbages. The increase in money and power, if I had stayed, would have anchored me to the spotlights. It was important to me to give space to my family, which I wanted to hold together, and to liberate the daddy in me. Although I have seen and learnt a great deal in the last seven years, I found I had begun to look at things as the famous Gabriel, despite hiding my occupation whenever possible, hitching lifts, etc. I had begun to think in business terms; very useful for an often bitten once shy musician, but treating records and audiences as money was taking me away from them. When performing, there were less shivers up and down the spine. I believe the world has soon to go through a difficult period of changes. I'm excited by some of the areas coming through to the surface which seem to have been hidden away in people's minds. I want to explore and be prepared to be open and flexible enough to respond, not tied in to the old hierarchy. Much of my psyche's ambitions as "Gabriel archetypal rock star" have been fulfilled - a lot of the ego-gratification and the need to attract young ladies, perhaps the result of frequent rejection as "Gabriel acne-struck public school boy". However, I can still get off playing the star game once in a while. My future within music, if it exists, will be in as many situations as possible. It's good to see a growing number of artists breaking down the pigeonholes. This is the difference between the profitable, compartmentalized, battery chicken and the free-range. Why did the chicken cross the road anyway? There is no animosity between myself and the band or management. The decision had been made some time ago and we have talked about our new direction. The reason why my leaving was not announced earlier was because I had been asked to delay until they had found a replacement to plug up the hole. It is not impossible that some of them might work with me on other projects. The following guesswork has little in common with truth: Gabriel left Genesis. 1) To work in theatre. 2) To make more money as a solo artist. 3) To do a "Bowie". 4) To do a "Ferry". 5) To do a "Furry Boa round my neck and hang myself with it". 6) To go see an institution. 7) To go senile in the sticks. I do not express myself adequately in interviews and I felt I owed it to the people who have put a lot of love and energy supporting the band to give an accurate picture of my reasons."

Genesis decided to continue without him. Gabriel took a year off after the tour and then began work on a solo project with producer Bob Ezrin. 'Peter Gabriel' was recorded at the Soundstage in Toronto, Canada with additional sessions at Morgan Studios, and Olympic Studios in London with guitarist Robert Fripp, bass player Tony Levin, drummer Allan Schwartzberg, percussionist Jimmy Maelen, guitarist Steve Hunter, keyboardist Jozef Chirowski, and Larry Fast on synthesizers and programming. Michael Gibbs did the arrangements for the London Symphony Orchestra on 'Down the Dolce Vita' and 'Here Comes the Flood'. 'Peter Gabriel' reached number thirty-eight in the US; thirty in Canada; number thirteen in Sweden; number nine in Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands; number eight in Norway; number seven in the UK; and peaked at number five in France. Due to the album cover by Peter Christopherson, the album is often referred to as 'Car' or 'Rain'.

'Moribund the Burgermeister' tells an allegorical story of an epidemic of madness.

"This thing's really outrageous, I tell you on the level
It's really so contagious must be the work of the devil
You better go now, pick up the pipers, tell them to play
Seems the music keeps them quiet, there is no other way.
Ah, close the doors!
"We've tried potions and waxen dolls,
But none of us could find any cures,"
Mother please, is it just a disease,
That has them breaking all my laws,
Check if you can disconnect the effect
And I'll go after the cause
No-one will tell what this is all about
But I will find out"

'Excuse Me' features Tony Levin on tuba and as leader of the Barbershop Quartet.


'Peter Gabriel' 
full album:

All songs written by Peter Gabriel, except where indicated.

Side One
1. "Moribund the Burgermeister" 4:20
2. "Solsbury Hill" 4:21
3. "Modern Love" 3:38
4. "Excuse Me" (Gabriel, Martin Hall) 3:20
5. "Humdrum" 3:25
Side Two
6. "Slowburn" 4:36
7. "Waiting for the Big One" 7:15
8. "Down the Dolce Vita" 5:05
9. "Here Comes the Flood" 5:38

No comments:

Post a Comment