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Passion:  The Last Temptation of Christ
by Peter Gabriel

Faith and Film Music - The Music and the Meaning

 

 

 

 

 

 

Passion:  The Last Temptation of Christ (Soundtrack) by Peter Gabriel

Passion: The Last Temptation of Christ
Composed by Peter Gabriel
Geffen Records (2002)

Rating: 7/10

Buy Passion:  The Last Temptation of Christ by Peter Gabriel  from Amazon.com

 

Listen to this soundclip of Passion:  The Last Temptation of ChristThe Feeling Begins

Listen to this soundclip of Passion:  The Last Temptation of ChristWith This Love

Listen to this soundclip of Passion:  The Last Temptation of ChristIt is Accomplished


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“Despite its non “authentic” soundtrack nature, this can hardly be seen as a failing point of the album. “Passion” is still a wonderful listen for those who enjoy film music, and its’ musical textures have inspired many composers aiming to recreate a similar score for a similar genre.”

Gabriel’s Temptation
Review by Steve Townsley


Peter Gabriel is more known for his eclectic contributions to pop music and the creative, innovative animated videos that would accompany some of his biggest hits, notably “Sledgehammer” and “Steam”. Gabriel certainly has a more spiritual side to his music, however, and is not afraid to pursuit it, whether or not it is perceived as “popular”, particularly in comparison to his bigger radio hits.

Likewise innovative and eclectic filmmaker Martin Scorcese chose Peter Gabriel to score his controversial 1988 film, THE LAST TEMPTATION OF CHRIST. The choice was a curious one, as Gabriel seemed unlikely to the task, but this is why both Scorcese and Gabriel are unique in their artistry, both seeing creative potential where others do not. The collaboration gave listeners a curious new album from Gabriel.

Because of his deep artistic attachment to the project, Gabriel continued to develop the music long after the film had been released. Not quite a soundtrack, at this point, the score became more of an instrumental album, released by Gabriel under the title “Passion”. (Sometimes the album is not found on the soundtrack shelves, but in pop and world music bins, depending on the retailer!)

The music on the album is a collaboration of performances by musicians and vocalists more noted for their contributions to the world music genre, but whom have since collaborated on many more recent film and television music projects. (Close listeners may recognize the backing vocals of Shankar, whose more recent projects have included the popular show “Heroes”.) Gabriel’s own personal touch to the music included a contemporary percussion track as well as his own vocalizations, which prevent this album from sounding like a too-deliberate attempt at first century music.

Despite its non “authentic” soundtrack nature, this can hardly be seen as a failing point of the album. “Passion” is still a wonderful listen for those who enjoy film music, and its’ musical textures have inspired many composers aiming to recreate a similar score for a similar genre. Composer Joseph LoDuca recreated a homage to Gabriel’s “A Different Drum” (track 7) for the series “Hercules: The Legendary Adventures”. “A Different Drum” is one of the album’s more recognizable compositions, for its’ catchy repetitive drum rhythm and Gabriel’s lyric-less vocals. Indeed, the entire album is a compelling arrangement of ethnic winds and beats gilded with the lightest touch of religious themes, climaxing in a rejoice of bells and drums in penultimate track 20, “It is Accomplished”, which is a pure celebratory track of music, as it should be. The closing track, 21, revisits the established joy-theme of “Accomplished”, but is much more reclusive and haunting, with a solitary woodwind and layered vocals, and slowly fades away to the album’s close.

The cons of this album are few, but if you are not an enthusiast of similar sounding film scores like the works of Vangelis, Lisa Gerrard, or even John Debney’s work on THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST, then album may not be worth your while. This is a very atmospheric album, and it’s one that the eager listener may find themselves revisiting many times.
 

Rating: 7/10

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Track

Track Title Track Time  Rating
1 The Feeling Begins 3:59  ****
2 Gethsemane 1:25  **
3 Of These, Hope 3:55  ***
4 Lazarus Raised 1:25  ***
5 Of These, Hope (Reprise) 2:44  ****
6 In Doubt 1:32  **
7 A Different Drum 4:40  ****
8 Zaar 4:53  ***
9 Troubled 2:55  ****
10 Open 3:27  ***
11 Before Night Falls 2:19  **
12 With This Love 3:39  ****
13 Sandstorm 3:02  ***
14 Stigmata 2:27  **
15 Passion 7:38  ****
16 With This Love (Choir) 3:20  ****
17 Wall of Breath 2:29  ***
18 The Promise of Shadows 2:13  *
19 Disturbed 3:35  **
20 It is Accomplished 2:55  ****
21 Bread and Wine 2:19  ****
  Total Running Time (approx) 67 minutes  

 

 
   

 

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