Listen Closer: Peter Gabriel, Joe Henry

My musical journey through 2014 begins with a bunch of my favorite artists together on one record performing Peter Gabriel covers. And right off the bat, I’m impressed. David Byrne’s version of “I Don’t Remember” is fantastic.

And there’s more:

Arcade Fire performs “Games Without Frontiers” — which makes sense, since the song has lines in English and French.

Randy Newman sings “Big Time.”

Elbow — a band that frequently earns Peter Gabriel comparisons — turns in an imaginative new version of “Mercy Street.”

And lo and behold… Lou Reed rises to perform a version of “Solsbury Hill” that only he could have cooked up.

NPR First Listen is offering a limited-time preview of …And I’ll Scratch Yours in its entirety. But here’s the David Byrne piece…

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Also, KEXP has posted a video of Joe Henry’s recent visit to the studio.

Get a preview of two songs from Joe’s extraordinary upcoming album Invisible Hour: “Swayed” and “Plainspeak.”

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I’m hoping to blog more often about music in 2014. Look for posts called “Listen Closer.”

I’m excited about so many upcoming releases, so stay tuned for news and links related to Joe Henry’s brilliant new record, as well as new releases from Beck, Bruce Springsteen, U2, St. Vincent, and Suzanne Vega. (By the way, her next album looks likely to take the Album Title of 2014 award: Tales from the Realm of the Queen of Pentacles.)

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About Jeffrey Overstreet

Jeffrey Overstreet has two passions: writing fiction, and celebrating art — music, cinema, photography, literature — through writing and teaching. He is the author of a “memoir of dangerous moviegoing” — Through a Screen Darkly. And his four-novel fantasy series, The Auralia Thread, which begins with Auralia's Colors, was published by Random House. He speaks at universities and conferences around the world about understanding art through eyes of faith. He is earning his MFA in Creative Writing at Seattle Pacific University, where he has worked for 11 years as an editor, writer, and communications project manager. His work has been recognized in The New Yorker, TIME, The Seattle Times, IMAGE, Ravi Zacharias International — and Christianity Today, where he served as a film journalist for more than a decade. He recently began a weekly column called "Listening Closer" for Christ and Pop Culture.