Pope Francis is releasing a rock album called ‘Wake Up!’

28 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Amid US fanfare, Pope Francis plans rock album.

With Pope Francis on a historic visit to the United States, His Holiness is planning to spread his message of hope, faith and unity with the rock-tinged material.Reports that a progressive rock album featuring Pope Francis doesn’t mean the pontiff is fronting a reunion of ‘70s prog-rock stalwarts Gentle Giant or UFO.NEW YORK, US: Pope Francis has been called a rock star among religious leaders and soon that will be true literally, with the pontiff out soon with an album. Approved by the Vatican, the album is a collaboration with Believe Digital and features the Pontiff delivering sacred hymns and excerpts of his “most moving speeches in multiple languages paired with uplifting musical accompaniment ranging from pop-rock to Gregorian chant”.

Forward! features Pope Francis addressing a South Korean audience in English last year amid “atmospheric synths, trumpeting horns and skyscraping electric guitars reminiscent of Godspeed You! The Pope can be heard saying, “Wake up, wake up / The Lord speaks of a responsibility that the Lord gives you / It is a duty to be vigilant / Not to allow the pressures, the temptations and the sins to dull our sensibility of the beauty of holiness.” On Wake Up!, Pope Francis speaks to the listener in Italian, English, Spanish and Portuguese over 11 tracks to address issues like peace, dignity, environmental concerns and helping those most in need.

To the pope’s voice and the crowd’s applause, the song builds on rock guitar and keyboards akin to 1970s rock, as well as trumpets more reminiscent of The Vatican. ”No one who sleeps can sing, dance and rejoice,” the pope says on the track. The Argentinean-born Pope Francis, speaking to the US Congress last week, asked the leaders of the most powerful and wealthiest nation to mend the “open wounds” of a planet ripped apart by hate, poverty, weapons and climate change. “I know that you share my conviction that much more still needs to be done, and that in times of crisis and economic hardship, a spirit of global solidarity must not be lost,” the Pope told Congress. “At the same time, I would encourage you to keep in mind all those people around us who are trapped in a cycle of poverty. Forward!” certainly sounds like an enthusiastic call-to-action kind of lead single (the title itself has a very EDM way of demanding the listener to move their body), we also got a track list for Wake Up!, and thus our first window into possible follow-up singles. Don Giulio Neroni, the producer and artistic director of the album, told Rolling Stone that contemporary music worked well for Francis’ words. ”I tried to be strongly faithful to the pastoral and personality of Pope Francis: the Pope of dialogue, open doors, hospitality,” he was quoted as saying. Of these, “Laudato Sie” translates to “You Praised…”, which should be a contender for single status if only because it could really capitalize on social media trends via the praise-hands emoji. “Licua” means liquid, so this could be Pope Francis’ smooth, liquid, trance-y beat.

Francis, the first pope born outside Europe in modern times, has won a wide following even outside the 1.2 billion-strong Catholic world for his emphasis on social justice rather than conservative sexual mores. While the rock approach is non-traditional, successive popes have recorded albums based on their words, often combined with chants or other devotional music. Blige’s “Family Affair,” which can’t be a bad thing. “Salve Regina” is obviously a cover of the song made famous by Whoopi Goldberg, Kathy Najimy, and company in the film Sister Act. Most intriguingly, “La Iglesia No Puede Ser Una Ong!” appears to translate to “The Church Cannot Be an NGO.” This feels a little dense to be a pop hit, but if Hozier could make songs about church work…

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