October 31st, 2004

South Park

5.1

One of the fun things about DVDs with surround sound is that they're giving perfectly good older music a new lease of life through surround re-mixes.

A recent addition to the list of such revivals is Play, which contains the videos of Peter Gabriel.

The main track listing consists of 23 videos dating from the 1970s up to 2002, and the range of performances included emphasis how difficult it is to pigeon-hole Peter Gabriel musically. Maybe "white funk" would cover more tracks than anything else, but by no means all. It's also obvious from the videos that Gabriel's artistry isn't just musical, though he makes it clear in the accompanying booklet that some of the videos are others' visions.

As an aside, it's also interesting to see what a chameleon Gabriel is in terms of his own appearance: at different times he resembles Craig Ferguson, Mel Gibson, Nicolas Cage, Jonathon Ross and a future-fascist tramp-hippy Kojak Catweazle.

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Play is available on Gabriel's RealWorld label, also home to a variety of world music artists such as Sheila Chandra and the Afro Celt Sound System.

One of the fun things about a dual monitor setup is I can view the videos on one screen while typing the review on the other one.