Scratch My Back and I'll Scratch Yours (Gatefold Sleeve) [2LP Vinyl]
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180 gram audiophile vinyl / Gatefold Sleeve / Printed inner sleeves
About the Artist
'Rather than make a traditional covers record, I thought it would be much more fun to create a new type of project in which artists communicated with each other and swapped a song for a song, i.e. you do one of mine and I'll do one of yours, hence the title 'Scratch My Back - And I'll Scratch Yours'. Peter Gabriel, 2013 'Scratch My Back…And I'll Scratch Yours' is a series of song exchanges in which Gabriel and other leading artists reinterpret each other's songs. The ﬁrst half of this double album, titled 'Scratch My Back', was originally released in 2010. Gabriel covers work by seasoned superstars like David Bowie, Paul Simon and Lou Reed, but he also took on marvelous interpretations of work by younger acts like Arcade Fire, Bon Iver and Radiohead. In 2013, most of these artists returned the favour on '…And I'll Scratch Yours'. The reciprocating artists opted for differing approaches to Peter's songs. A few chose to radically reinterpret the original material, in the process leaving it barely recognisable - Lou Reed's snarling 'Solsbury Hill' or the frighteningly futuristic version of 'Mother Of Violence' by Brian Eno, co-writer of David Bowie's 'Heroes' covered by Gabriel on 'Scratch My Back'. Other contributors include Arcade Fire ('Games Without Frontiers'), Elbow ('Mercy Street') and Regina Spektor ('Blood Of Eden').
Top Customer Reviews
I honestly wanted to love this album. Peter Gabriel is a national treasure and I am sadly old enough to admit to seeing Genesis at Bristol's Colston Hall in 1973 where Gabriel was mesmerizing. When I saw them next at Knebworth in 1978 he wasn't in the band and I preferred Devo (unlike the majority of the crowd!). Gabriel has always ploughed his own furrow and his development of WOMAD deserves a knighthood. He has a great sense of humour and his recent cover with Hot Chip of "Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa" by Vampire Weekend is a wicked gem.
"Scratch my back" is not just a covers album it's about song exchange with the different artists covered pledging to return the favour. I had hoped that Gabriel's album could do a "Joni Mitchell". When the great lady revisited her standards the mature reading that she produced through a voice that was no longer angelic but infused with a life of experience and backed by a stirring orchestra was superb. Songs like "Both Sides Now" sounded better than the originals.
Gabriel's covers are certainly well chosen and show impeccable taste (although "My Body is a cage" is a least favourite Arcade Fire song), the problem is that some work incredibly well while other fall flat. Thus Gabriel's version of Bon Iver's "Flume" for instance is workmanlike and misses the mark. His reading of Neil Young's "Philadelphia" never quite captures the quiet desperation and sheer sadness to be found on the original. When we finally get a cover like Radiohead's "Street Spirit" that is so radically reworked that it is almost unrecognizable to the original, you punch the air. The trouble is that it just does not work and is mournful and dreadfully dull. Indeed my dog gave me a dirty look when I played it!Read more ›
I played the album a few days later. "The boy in the bubble", and "Mirrorball" sounded quite nice, I then heard "The Book of Love" for the second time and my knees went weak, what a gorgeous song, it makes me feel so good. Every time I play the album it seems to get better. Flume is beautiful, "The Power of the Heart" "Philadelphia" lovely. There is not a bad song on the album. "Heroes" and "Street Spirit" are probablly my least favourites. But i'm sure i'll get to like them eventally. I have since bought "69 songs by Magnetic Fields (The book of Love) on the strengh of this Album- But thats another story.
Iv'e never written a review before, but I love this album so much. Please ignore the poor reviews, If you have given the Album a poor review Listen to it again, and again. You wont be sorry.
One of the highlights here is "Heroes" as it provides a majestic opening to the album with a full blown orchestra and powerful strings. "The Boy In The Bubble" is much gentler and emotionally intense with a simple piano and a gentle soothing cello playing in the background. This contrast of classical arrangements works in the context of this release. "Mirrorball" is another beautifully constructed song with intense and captivating string arrangements providing exciting variation in the melody. "Flume" represents the quiet before the storm with soft vocals from Peter in the verses and the use of his more plaintive tone in the chorus, helping to build the song to a crescendo. "Listening Wind" is very dark and sombre, adding magic and an element of bitter sweet passion so present in Peter's own compositions. "The Power Of Your Heart" has a very sentimental and spine tingling orchestral arrangement which suits Peter like a glove and is another highlight. "My Body Is A Cage" is another dark and atmospheric track which builds into a a mini symphony of sounds combined with deep hypnotising vocals. "The Book Of Love" is very endearing with a sweet melody and arrangements and ends up being the third highlight. "I Think It's Going To Rain Today" is a very quiet and gentle piano led ballad focussing on the beauty of the lyrics and melody.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The book of Love is a stand out track. I just didn't like the tracks, depressing.Published 18 months ago by Albert Reilly
On initial listening this album is a bit hit and miss, but stick with it and it grows on you.It is like Marmite you either love it or hate it , but is worth coming back to.Published on 21 April 2014 by Mr. I. Ringstead
Thankfully, this is no carbon-copy cover-song album. Gabriel has stripped each song down to its bare bones, banned guitars and drums, and made his vocals as raw as possible. Read morePublished on 24 Jan. 2014 by Nicholas Casley