Gabriel Juggling New Album With Array Of Projects

Peter Gabriel has resumed work on his next studio album while juggling an array of other projects. "There are some [new] things," the artist told Billboard last Friday in New York. "I've been very goo

Peter Gabriel has resumed work on his next studio album while juggling an array of other projects. "There are some [new] things," the artist told Billboard last Friday in New York. "I've been very good at distraction with some charitable things and some Internet things. But I'm now back in writing mode and I'm very much enjoying that."

Gabriel, however, wouldn't put a timetable on when the as-yet-untitled project would be ready. After all, a decade went by between the release of his last two albums, 1992's "Us" and 2002's "Up." "Autumn. Or spring," he said with a laugh when asked about a potential arrival date. "That usually suffices. In some year."

The artist isn't ruling out some kind of collaboration with his ex-Genesis bandmates, who enjoyed a successful reunion tour this year. There had been talk of presenting the 1970s concept album "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway" on stage, but Gabriel couldn't commit to clearing his schedule for the time necessary to do so.

"I'm hoping to see the show because I think they're going to do some more European dates, he said. "Nothing is excluded [in terms of a possible reunion]. We're still breathing and we don't need to be wheeled onto the stage. But I don't know. It's quite a time commitment to get it sounding right. When WOMAD started and got into heavy financial trouble, [Genesis] extremely generously agreed to do a benefit with me, performing. I learned then it takes a lot longer than you think to relearn what you think you knew."

Gabriel was in New York for the Audio Engineering Society convention, where he greeted attendees in a replica of the shed studio he often utilizes at home in England. The room houses a Solid Stage Logic analog mixing console which can also interface with a digital Pro Tools rig.

For Gabriel, the analog/digital debate mirrors his desire to draw inspiration from both sides of the brain. "If you look at the creative process, you really want to tickle both sides," he says. "When you're with a group of musicians and the red light is on, you're improvising. It's spontaneous. You're responding on the fly. With the analytic brain, you're going note by note, piece by piece to pull it all together. It's a different process and you'll get you a different result. The ideal process is one that can layer one on top of the other."

Of late, Gabriel has devoted time to the launch of TheElders.org, which aims to create a coalition of veteran leaders to inspire a younger generation to help solve global issues. In conjunction, Gabriel is hoping to organize a concert timed to the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in December 2008. "With any luck it will be the most significant bands of the new generation," he said. "I hope we can make it happen."