Artist: Lena Hall
Title: “Obsessed: Peter Gabriel”
Label: Ghostlight Records
Release Date: 2/2/2018
Last month offered up an overview of a brand-new musical EP series by Tony Award winning singer Lena Hall with her “Obsessed: Hedwig and the Angry Inch”. It was the first in her series of “Obsessed” released which pretty much amount to artists or material that she herself is obsessed with. I loved the idea and as a fan of Hall’s for a number of years was glad to support this effort. Folks who missed that summary can click HERE to check it out. While I was relatively new to those songs, her latest EP focuses on the legendary Peter Gabriel, an artist that I am much more familiar with so let’s discuss “Obsessed: Peter Gabriel”.
Lena begins the album with her take on “Come Talk To Me” from Gabriel’s “Us” album. Now I should stress that she has stripped these songs down to the core elements and while guitar (Justin Craig), bass (Matt Duncan) and drums (Brian Fishler) are present, there is a very understated vibe to the tracks and it should be viewed as an acoustic album. I hadn’t heard this song in quite some time and love the way she delivers it. It was a poignant song in the first place given Gabriel’s life happenings at the time and Hall handles this with great respect. “Sledgehammer” follows and I don’t think I know anyone who doesn’t know this particular song since it was once in heavy rotation on radio and that video music channel that only used to play clips like this back in the day. It’s remained a favorite song of mine by Peter and I enjoyed Halls take on it.
I didn’t know “Lay Your Hands On Me” from Gabriel’s fourth eponymously named album but I liked the power and resonance that Hall brings to the table on it. It’s best listened to at proper volume. The closing number is the best in my opinion and is probably even more a favorite of mine than “Sledgehammer”. As you know the original track has such a big sound to it but Lena’s bringing it down to core elements and using softer percussion brought the song to new worlds. Very nicely done and I think the only thing I would have wanted on this album was a version of “Solsbury Hill” from his first album.
Truth be told, I’ve known just how Lena handles the music of Peter Gabriel for some time because one of our earliest blogging adventures when I maintained “PiercingMetal Musings” found me attending a stage script reading where the show was using all Peter Gabriel music. It was a different kind of content for my website back in 2009, and now that blog is a part of the main PiercingMetal website in full and this sort of story would be laid out on “The Chronicles”. Interested readers can examine that narrative and its photos by clicking HERE.
The next EP in the “Obsessed” series will be an homage to the great Sir Elton John. I think that this is going to be a great one. Stay tuned.
1. Come Talk To Me
3. Lay Your Hands On Me
4. In Your Eyes
Official Website: http://www.lenahall.com
Official Website: http://www.lenahallobsessed.com
Official Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lenahallobsessed
Official Website: http://www.ghostlightrecords.com