on 15 February 2012
Recently purchased this on CD, not having heard it for many years. Wow - what a treat. I'd forgotten just how good this CD is. No dud tracks, excellent songwriting throughout and powerful performances on every track. A really cohesive piece of work.
Peter Gabriel's first album caught everyone by surprise when it was released. His relief at shedding a heavy-soloing prog band is palpable, particularly to anyone who sensed his desire to exert total control over his later work with Genesis. Having heard the radio-friendly hit 'Solsbury Hill', however, most casual listeners I've met are stumped by the rest of the album. Not one track is representative of the work as a whole. Straight rock is covered by 'Modern Love' and 'Slowburn', though even the lyrics are typically oddball ('All I ever get is a spin in your washing machine'). 'Moribund The Burgermeister' and 'Humdrum' are both unique and quirky, 'Excuse Me' features barbershop harmonies, 'Waiting For The Big One' is parodic blues and 'Down The Dolce Vita' marries orchestra to funk rhythm and rock. The apocalyptic 'Here Comes The Flood' represents the big finish, complete with dramatic guitar solo and drum fills. I have always liked this a album a lot, though it seems to lack a little warmth at times. Even so, it remains one of his best.
on 2 May 2014
I bought a new turn table a week ago, and have been giving a few spins to some of my old vinyl, I bought this album probably about '79, ( would have been about 16), and loved it instantly, especially the first side, you get it all really, bone crunching hard rock in 'Modern Love' (a punchier version of Aunty Alice's 'Dept of youth'), shimmering beauty in 'Humdrum' , the awesomeness (and that is an overused word) of 'Solisbury hill' , the pathos of 'Here comes the flood'.
I am glad Gabriel used Ezrin and crew, could anybody imagine 'Solisbury hill ' without that massive slashing chord at the end, the other stand out for me is 'Humdrum', the 'out of woman comes the man' section at the end still sends shivers down my spine.
Oh... And great cover.
on 27 August 2015
After Gabriel quit Genesis, people wondered how the band would carry on without him. Then they turned out "A Trick of the Tail", one of their biggest successes to date, and people began to wonder how Gabriel would fare without THEM.
Well, he sure showed everyone. This is a startling debut, right from the first, unworldly notes of the opener, "Moribund the Burgemeister" (and has anyone ever written such a great song about St Vitus' dance?) and its dramatic, creepy vocals. Then follows the upbeat, glorious statement of intent that is "Solsbury Hill" and from then on, Gabriel rushes about with an incredible flare of creative energy, hitting every musical genre he can, from the hard-rocking "Modern Love" to a barbershop quartet cum-vaudeville turn on "Excuse Me" and the dissolute lounge blues of "Waiting for the Big One". I've always felt the second half of the album loses focus a bit, with too many different ideas crammed into each song, but it still generates a wonderful other-worldly, atmosphere and, after the bone-rattling "Down the Dolce Vita", ends with the breath-taking, bleak but beautiful "Here Comes the Flood". The production is epic and the roots are still very much in Gabriel's prog-rock past, but you can feel him reaching out for other horizons. Suddenly, he was no longer ex-Genesis. He was Peter Gabriel, and a force to be reckoned with.
on 6 June 2003
Peter Gabriels first Solo album, Car, remastered in SACD audio format. The disc is a Hybrid CD which means it will play on any CD player, but only the "old" 16 bit/44Khz PCM track on the SACD will be used. If u got a SACD player, it will take benefit of the new 1 bit/2,8Ghz DSD technology, from Sony/Philips, but only in Stereo mode.
Pros: Grate Stereo sound, and the price is fair.
Cons: Does not include a Multi channel (5.1) track.
on 31 July 2008
my favorite line must be: "...and I'm hovering like a fly, waiting for the windshield on the freeway... " The album is so original, beautiful and odd that for me it's one of his best. "SO" is more commercial, but still does not dretact from its greatness, but this first one, stands apart. Nothing like anyone had ever done before. His slightly cracked, yet perfect voice along with magical, humorous lyrics makes it a jewel. You need to listen to it a lot to appreciate it. The guy is a genius! And still is. His latest, "Down to Earth" (Wall-E sound track) is wonderful, and even more so once you've seen the movie. And for trivia buffs, he did not give titles to his first albums and also did not want to show his face clearly, and this to spite his mother (for fun!)
`Peter Gabriel' is Gabriel's first solo album after leaving Genesis and although that bands influence is still evident here, you can also hear Gabriel finding his own voice. Obviously `Solsbury Hill' is a stand out track here but it is surprising just how fresh it sounds after all this time, I truly never tire of hearing it. I also love `Here Comes the Flood' which has the most amazing poetry and although some of the lyrics seem confusing at first take, they sit together perfectly and weave a pattern of beauty every time I hear them. This is a slightly confused album and it feels less coherent than later releases but it shows how he was beginning to emerge from a band situation and find his own feet in the musical world. Some tracks are easily discounted, but others still sound rich and relevant now. Maybe don't come to this album for your first taste of what Gabriel has to offer (a best of compilation, `So' or `Us' may be a better first album) but definitely add it to your collection at some point and see where his solo work started out and track where it subsequently lead to.
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on 19 March 2004
Peter Gabriel volume 1 was Gabriel’s break for artistic freedom following the progressive heyday of Genesis, and the shift in popular music towards genres like disco and punk. The record reflects a time in Gabriel’s career (and popular music in general) when anything was possible; a time when collected ideas from the days of Genesis - as well as ideas that had been coming to fruition during Gabriel’s break from the lime-light - were allowed to develop into something bigger. Because of this, PG 1 is something of an inconsistent listen, more so than the majority of records I own. This is largely due to the very same overload of ideas that sets his work apart from his contemporaries. The problem here though is simply that Gabriel didn’t know how to harness these varying references and ideologies, and instead of crafting a changing and shifting musical landscape, decides to throw everything at the listener in the hope that something will stick...
As is par for the course with these kind of creative melting pots, some of the songs are indelibly classic, while others are merely interesting diversions. Nowhere is this more apparent than with the first two songs, Moribund the Burgermeister and Solsbury Hill. With Moribund... we have the same kind of industrialist noise and clever lyrics mumbled through distortion that Gabriel would recreate much more successfully on later tracks like Shock the Monkey and Burn You Up, Burn You Down. As album intros go, it’s a self-consciously strange affair, one that seems purposely created to demonstrate to the listener what a diverse and idiosyncratic record this is going to be. Meanwhile, Solsbury Hill reflects Gabriel at his very best, creating what could only be described as a progressive-rock folk song, complete with Robert Fripp’s classical guitar and banjo overdubs and Gabriel’s surreal, almost medieval flute/recorder solos. In terms of pastoral imagery, it’s up there with some of Van Morrison’s best ever Celtic-soul, and unsurprisingly, was chosen as the opener to Gabriel’s definitive best of collection, Hit!
Other songs like Modern Love and Slow Burn (not to be confused with the similarly titled Bowie songs) are basically straight rockers in the style of mid-period Genesis and Pink Floyd etc, whilst Excuse Me goes even further left-field by incorporating elements of jazz and even a barbershop quartet. They’re pleasant enough as standalone songs, but hardly warrant a masterpiece tag. Meanwhile, the closing numbers Going Down La Dolce Vita, and Here Comes the Flood represent Gabriel at a pinnacle... The former finds electric guitars wailing away alongside a bombastic brass orchestra to create a very-70’s rock epic along the lines of Rainbow or Survivor... whilst Here Comes the Flood starts softly with gentle pianos and keyboard effects, before metamorphosing into a similarly grandiloquent rock monster... (The low-key and, for lack of a better word, unplugged version of this song can be found on Gabriel’s 1989 best of collection Shaking the Tree).
Peter Gabriel volume 1 is still a better record than PG2, though it lacks the energy and brilliance of the later PG3, his masterpiece. This is a work of wild, exuberant creativity that doesn’t always result in a definitive listening experience. It’s a 50/50 scenario, with half the album featuring eclectic experimentation, and the other half featuring joyous, perfectly crafted pop/rock. A mixed bag admittedly, but one that Gabriel fans shouldn’t be without. If you’re new to Gabriel, it might be advised to start with one of the Greatest hits compilations before moving onto So or PG3.
on 19 October 2015
Its a wonderful album - always was and always will be - who at the time thought Gabriel without Genesis could come up with something so astonishing? This 2002 remaster really brings out the subtleties of the music , although I still play my battered old vinyl edition now and then as the sound on that - despite the surface marks - is raw and rustic in a fashion that CDs lack
on 24 January 2000
A rollercoaster of musical styles, this CD exemplifies Peter Gabriel's range of talents. He blends his music beautifully with the lyrics, notably in 'Moribund' and 'Here comes the Flood'. If you liked the ballad version of 'Flood' on Shaking the Tree, check out the stormy original here. 'Solsbury Hill' is one of his best songs, and its optimistic mood carries through to the playfulness of 'Modern Love' and 'Excuse Me'. The remaining tracks may sound a little epic but they were in tune with, if not ahead of, their era. This is an excellent starting point for those who want to explore Peter Gabriel's musical power.