And I'll Scratch Yours

Want a killer tribute album? Put it together yourself. On 2010's Scratch My Back, Peter Gabriel crafted orchestra-assisted takes on tunes by his favorite songwriters, including Arcade Fire, Paul Simon and David Byrne. Now his chosen artists respond with excellent covers of Gabriel classics. Arcade Fire warp "Games Without Frontiers" with Reflektor-style dub, and Randy Newman's "Big Time" foregrounds the Gordon Gekko-era tune's satiric edge. Among the most striking transformations is Lou Reed's posthumous "Solsbury Hill," which surfs waves of sugar-rush distortion. The disc wraps with Simon's ecstatic "Biko," which yanks the heartstrings as hard as you'd expect.

From The Archives Issue 1200: January 16, 2014
x