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Peter Gabriel – 'Back to Front' Movie review

If ever Peter Gabriel’s imminent induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame needed justification (which it certainly doesn’t), Back to Front did exactly that.
Delivered with such art and showmanship, Gabriel invites the audience into the musical family behind the Back to Front tour. The recorded concert is accompanied by intimate interviews with both Gabriel and the other band members.

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the success of his  album SoBack to Front is a concert recording of the seminal album, filmed in October 2013, in its entirety. A comparatively simple show (lest we forget that Robbie Williams’ recent Take the Crown tour included a giant metal sculpture of his own head, fitted with personal flamethrowers – handy), the sheer skill, chemistry, and talent of the musicians are the main highlights. Punctuated by the classic, self-proclaimed “dad dancing” (Gabriel’s sporadic and spontaneous shimmies and jumps), we are treated to an absolutely roaring performance of the iconic album. The set is pretty minimal, but the real innovation is in the incorporation of mobile 4K Ultra High Definition cameras (ooer) that not only serve to capture more intimate shots of the musicians, but also serve as a somewhat interactive feature for them. These HG Wells-esque companions create a new dimension of experience, whilst also giving a dystopian twist to the production. It is rare to find a concert documentary that so completely brings the audience into the musical family in the way that Back to Front achieves. The sense of fellowship and artistry is all-encompassing, but Gabriel’s collaborative attitude also allows each individual’s talents to complement one another and to shine individually. Every single person on that stage is phenomenal at what they do, and this is made clear from beginning to end.

Back to Front really is a feast for the senses, whether you’re a diehard Gabriel fan, or simply have ears. More than a concert documentary, this production is truly visually immersive and impactful. It does not fail to entertain and engage, and is an innovative production from first to last. Back to Front really serves as a professional triumph, further bolstering Peter Gabriel’s reputation for innovation in music and visual art. Deeply enjoyable for all.

Back to Front is released nationwide on 20th March 2014.

© Phoebe Person

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Peter Gabriel "Back to Front" Tour Compilation yesgalaxy

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