Peter Gabriel explores his back catalog in the album ‘New Blood,’ reinventing some of his classic hits and deep album cuts in an orchestral setting. One of the songs that made the cut, ‘Solsbury Hill,’ has become the go-to track for “uplifting” film trailers over the last few years. In fact, it was even used when an enterprising YouTube prankster re-cut the trailer for ‘The Shining’ to make it look like a romantic comedy.

“Yeah, maybe I’ve let it go too much,” Gabriel admitted during a recent interview. “I’ve started to take the attitude that it was harder getting on the radio, and trailers and film music and synchs are a good alternative. But I know some people feel that song is overexposed and I let it be used too many times.” 

According to Gabriel, the idea for ‘New Blood’ came out of his last album, ‘Scratch My Back,’ which found him covering other artists’ songs with an orchestra. “When we brought ‘Scratch My Back’ on the road we wanted to have two hours of music and I only had one hour with ‘Scratch,’ so we started working up my own stuff,” Gabriel recalled. “It was opening up something and I wanted to explore it a bit more. I was really pleased with the ‘Scratch My Back’ portion of the show, but people seemed to really like the second half better. I was really enjoying it too. I felt that we were discovering something special. It wasn’t just an orchestral version of an old hit.”

Gabriel is out promoting ‘New Blood’ now, but he says he hasn’t forgotten about ‘I/O,’ the album of new material that he’s been talking about for more than five years. He claims he has more than 130 “ideas” in various stages for the record, but “They’re still sitting there and I haven’t done much work on ‘I/O.’”

“Some I’d probably like now and quite a lot I’d just leave by the wayside,” he added. “A lot of them are starting points and some more are fleshed out recordings…I definitely want to look at that stuff. But having just done something that’s been seen as so serious, adult and difficult, it would be quite fun to do the opposite. So I’m going to explore a bit of that too. Maybe something lighter, rhythmic, more electronic maybe…into acoustic and dark.”

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