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World Music CD Reviews North American


By David Nubbins


This 1989 soundtrack to Martin Scorsese's controversial retelling of the life of Jesus scored Peter Gabriel a Grammy that same year, for best New Age album. But don't let that throw you, since Passion remains Gabriel's most significant exploration of traditional global sounds to date. Drawing on the resources of his Real World label, he called up the likes of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Youssou N'Dour and Baaba Maal to add earthy vocal grit to the ethereal tracks. Gabriel was trying to approximate the music of Jesus' world, and even nonbelievers found themselves converts to Gabriel's powerful sound.