Daniel Lanois helped make this the biggest album of his career
Rock and Pop, Art Rock, World
The combination of crowd pleasers and inspired songs made So a global hit that sounds incredible to this day.
30 years after its release So was given the half speed remaster treatment and issued on double 45rpm vinyl, and it is truly something to behold. It avoids many of the pitfalls of eighties albums with a rich, powerful sound and real depth of image. Red Rain fills your living room with power and majesty – while the crowd pleaser Sledgehammer is a lot better than its video. Then there are the duets, Kate Bush on the moving Don’t Give Up, Youssou N’Dour on In Your Eyes and album highlight, This Is The Picture (Excellent Birds), with Laurie Anderson.
One of the albums lesser-praised triumphs is That Voice Again where Gabriel wants “to be with you” but he hears that judge and jury in his head again. The soft sensuality of Mercy Street beautifully blends the voices of Jim Kerr from Simple Minds and Youssou N’Dour.
Big Time mercilessly lampoons success with huge rhythms and almost comical brass jabs, and the barren We Do What We’re Told (Milgram’s 37) is a dreamlike yet threatening floater. It took 15 years for Peter Gabriel to go global – but it was worth the wait. So is accomplished, groundbreaking music presented in a sublime way – intelligent rock with a witty twist.