Peter Gabriel: UP (2002)
Rating: 9.5/10
Best Tracks: I Grieve; Signal To Noise; The Drop

If a Canine’s testicles were indeed worthy of praise, then this album would certainly earn the label ‘The dog’s bo*****s”.

As it is, I will describe it sensibly. This is an outstanding piece of work.

I aimed to review Eminem’s Relapse album this week, but after obtaining UP and playing the first track, it was obvious I wouldn’t be listening to anything else for some time to come. This simply demands to be listened to, and doesn’t stop until the final piano chord of The Drop fades into silence. Even then, this is just a cue to go back to track 1 and start all over again.

From the second the crashing, frantic drums punctured the ambient noises of  Darkness, I was hooked. The production on this album is so well-considered and perfectly constructed that it’s little wonder that a decade passed between Gabriel’s previous studio release, US, and this. Every bar seems to have been put under the microscope, and the end result is pure musical brilliance.

Production aside; all the other components of a great album are evident too: the dark, fairytale-like lyrics, stirring melodies, faultless vocals, and top-class instrumentation.

I could spend all day talking about how good this album is and it still wouldn’t do it justice. Get it. Play it. Love it.

P.S. Pernickety as this may be; I refrained from giving UP a perfect rating due to Gabriel sounding slightly like Phil Collins on the track More Than This. Phil Collins and 10/10 should never appear in the same sentence, so 9.5/10 it is.