When Peter Gabriel started work on his fifth album in February 1985, in an old farmhouse called Ashcombe near Bath, he had no idea of the explosive and enduring impact this album would have. Released in 1986, So became one of the defining albums of the era, landing multitudes of awards, millions of sales and huge hits such as Sledgehammer, Don’t Give Up with Kate Bush, Say Anything, and In Your Eyes – the song immortalised by John Cusack in the film Say Anything.
Describing the time on his website, Gabriel notes: 'I think when we played the album back, we knew it was good. It wasn’t like I was an obscure artist; I’d had hits with Shock The Monkey, Games Without Frontiers and Solsbury Hill, but after each of them I’d purposefully retreated partially back into the shadows. With So this was the end of the idea of me being a sort of cult artist at the fringes of the mainstream, especially in America. There wasn’t an option to go and hide in the shadows any more.'
The 25th anniversary edition of So is the opportunity to explore how the album was made, the stories behind the songs, the evolution of each track and the outstanding live performance of the So tour.
As Gabriel says: 'Time leaves an indelible stamp on everything. When you revisit your past you can no longer live inside it, but you can walk around it, open up old memories and occasionally catch the scent of some place in which you lived'.
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