Geffen Records


Peter Gabriel UP.jpg (18856 bytes)

 This is not a rock record. This is not pop. It's art. Sure, it's in an audio format, but it's no less art. Throughout, pain is pumped into the tracks like blood through veins. "Darkness" proves Gabriel is still "Digging In The Dirt." On this brilliantly tense and cathartic song, he mumbles, screams and transcends humanity to become insecurity in search of release from fear. With heart wrenching personal confessions like "I'm afraid of loving women, and I'm scared of loving men," there's an emotional sparseness not heard on record since John Lennon's Plastic Ono Band. This song alone is worth the purchase price. It's simply one of the best recordings of the past decade. Of course, the rest of Up can't compare, but it's still incredibly strong. "The Barry Williams Show" is a dark, realistic take on the Jerry Springer phenomenon. Playing the title role, the singer is both ominous and funny as hell. If it had lyrics like "Steam" or "Sledgehammer," this could be huge, but these lyrics are far too deep and intense for mainstream acceptance. Near the end of Up, is an impassioned plea for human connection. "Signal To Noise" slowly swells up into an overblown, orchestrated crescendo that amply demonstrates why Peter Gabriel is who he is. Up is not up. It's not down. It's exploratory without noodles. It's deep without drowning. It's darkness with a ray of light. It's real. It's worthwhile. (2220 Colorado Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90404)

 (Chris McKay/