Peter Gabriel Shares New Song “Road to Joy” [Bright-Side Mix]: Listen

Peter Gabriel performs at the Accor Arena in Paris May 23 2023.

Peter Gabriel performs at the Accor Arena in Paris, May 23, 2023. (Photo by Christophe Delattre/AFP via Getty Images)

Peter Gabriel Shares New Song “Road to Joy” [Bright-Side Mix]: Listen

Brian Eno co-produced the latest full-moon release from Gabriel’s forthcoming LP I/O

Peter Gabriel has shared “Road to Joy” [Bright-Side Mix] the latest of six singles from his forthcoming LP I/O. The song was recorded at Real World Studios in Bath, the Beehive and British Grove in London, and High Seas Studios in Johannesburg, South Africa. Check out the “Bright-Side Mix”—helmed by Mark “Spike“ Stent—of the track below.

Gabriel co-produced the song with Brian Eno, inviting contributions from the Soweto Gospel Choir and members of Gabriel’s touring band: Tony Levin (bass), David Rhodes (guitar), Manu Katché (drums), Don E (bass keys), and Josh Shpak (trumpet). It also includes a string arrangement by John Metcalfe.

Gabriel detailed the album’s scope and the new song in the song’s YouTube description: 

“I’m working on a project which is partly a story focused around the brain and how we perceive things and this song connects to that. It deals with near-death experience and locked-in syndrome situations where people are unable to communicate or to move. It’s an amazingly frustrating condition. There have been some great books and films about this subject, but at this point in our story the people looking after our hero manage to find a way to wake him up. So, it’s a lyric about coming back into your senses, back to life, back into the world.

The song is one of the last tracks to emerge for the I/O record, but it has some DNA from an earlier project; ‘It was actually very late in the record that we got to this. There had been a song that musically I’d started, I think, around the OVO project called Pukka. It was very different to this, but it was actually the starting point for coming back to this song. I just felt there was a good groove there, and I wanted something else with rhythm and so we tried a few things when I was working with Brian Eno. The excitement and energy in the song was something that I was getting off on. I felt we didn’t have enough of that for this record.”

For several months, Gabriel has released songs from I/O on each full moon. He released the title track in April, and collaborated with XL Recordings boss Richard Russell for last month’s “Four Kinds of Horses.” Each release is paired with a new artist and artwork; this month’s is Ai Weiwei’s “Middle Finger in Pink.”

Gabriel is currently on tour in Europe; he arrives in North America in September. 

Read Pitchfork’s Sunday Review of Peter Gabriel’s 1986 album So

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