Scratch My Back
In the eight years since the release of his last LP, Peter Gabriel's indie cred has grown significantly, partly due to a number of namedrops from the likes of Vampire Weekend and Hot Chip. So, it's fitting that Gabriel chose to release a covers LP designed to bring together fans both old and new. Reunited with famed Canadian producer Bob Ezrin, Scratch My Back features a dozen tracks performed alongside the London Scratch Orchestra. Gabriel manages to reposition the stock material on Bowie's "Heroes," Paul Simon's "The Boy in the Bubble" and the Magnetic Field's "The Book of Love," stripping them of their quirk and leaving them sounding moody and sacred. But it's when Gabriel attempts to pour extra emotion into glass-half-empty tearjerkers like Bon Iver's "Flume," Arcade Fire's "My Body is a Cage" and Radiohead's "Street Spirit" that Scratch My Back loses its innovation, coming off as nothing more than one of those A String Tribute to… releases.
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