Reason #361 Why The ’80’s Didn’t Suck: Peter Gabriel III (Melt)
While his old band mates were busy releasing their last truly great album, Duke (see #363), former Genesis front man Peter Gabriel was unleashing his third solo album and one that would pretty much define his career from this point forward. “Melt” was unique in many ways, but the one groundbreaking fact everyone knows is that the whole album was recorded sans symbols, making for a wholly unique and desolate musical landscape. There were two minor ‘hits’ off this album; Games Without Frontiers and I Don’t Remember, and the fact these bleak rockers even made it to the mainstream charts speaks volumes how diverse the record buying public was around this time. Games Without Frontiers is the very first time I ever heard Gabriel, Genesis included (granted I was, like, 12 when this was originally released), and it remains my favorite PG song to this day.
The rest of the album, especially album opener Intruder, and Family Snapshot, is equally top notch stuff. All except for…Biko. Biko on it’s own is a fine song, I just don’t think it fits in very well here, which may be the reason it’s sequenced last. Who knows, and who cares, it’s inclusion doesn’t take away the fact this will always be the peak of Peter Gabriel s solo career, and one of the first great albums of the 1980’s.