Peter Gabriel’s Passion (AKA the soundtrack for Scorsese’s The Last Temptation Of Christ) is back on vinyl for the first time in 15 years! Most hardcore Gabriel fans will tell you this is their favorite piece from his entire body of work, and a couple members of Team Sweat fall into that group. Gabriel was no stranger to incorporating world music elements into his pop/rock compositions, so Passion’s content wasn’t completely out of left field, but this was the first time he exposed listeners to these styles full-on. If you know Gabriel’s more-popular music but haven’t heard Passion, here’s your chance to check it out as a deluxe, 45 RPM, half-speed re-mastered version, overseen by Gabriel and released by his Real World label to assure highest quality. There’s a massive in-stock list this week as well, so don’t forget to scope that out! -MLE
Peter Gabriel – Passion 3LP
Listen: Full Album
“One of the most important records for me was the Passion record which was an opportunity really to try as a writer to do a whole different sort of job than I usually do. I wasn’t intending to sing on it, I ended up doing some sort of background singing but it was with the brief for The Last Temptation of Christ for creating something that had references to that time and that part of the world but really had it’s own character and was to be sort of timeless in a way. I was very fortunate to have some extraordinary performances from people Nusrat, Youssou N’Dour and I remember one night with Nusrat and Shankar and there was a sort of India and Pakistan working together effectively on the track that is called ‘Passion,’ I think, was an extraordinary evening to be in the studio and just watch as these very gifted musicians really emoting.
I was excited to be asked to work on the music. When I first discussed the project with Martin Scorsese in 1983 I wanted to find out how he was intending to film this controversial novel. He wanted present the struggle between the humanity and divinity of Christ in a powerful and original way, and I was convinced by his commitment to the spiritual content and message. He is an excellent and very musical director and working with him has been a great experience. After we finished mixing the film, there were some unfinished ideas that needed developing, and I took some extra time to complete the record. There are several pieces that were not able to be included in the film and I felt the record should be able to stand as a separate body of work. I chose the working title for the film – Passion.
We recorded some of the finest singers and soloists in the field of world music and set the score on a backdrop of traditional North African rhythms and sounds. It was a wonderful experience working with such different and idiosyncratic musicians. They came from Pakistan, Turkey, India, Ivory Coast, Bahrain, Egypt, New Guinea, Morocco, Senegal and Ghana. For many of them working with this material was something quite new and they were very enthusiastic. The soundtrack is full of the spirit of their performance.” Peter Gabriel (1989)
Passionate – new releases, reissues & restocks…