Pope Francis: Leader of the Catholic Church, Bishop of Rome, Rock Star

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Check out this > Pope Francis rock album ..

The current pope of the Catholic Church is certainly known for his humility and more modern approach to faith, and his newest endeavor is certainly something that none of his predecessors ever attempted. Ever since his induction in 2013 the world has been watching what this modern pope would do next, but no one quite expected him to become a rock star. On Friday November 27 the Vatican released an album featuring Pope Francis called Wake Up! With Believe Digital who also handles artists like Bjork and the Ghetts. It’s being promoted by a music PR firm that normally promotes metal releases, but don’t expect it to sound quite like a Megadeath or Rob Zombie album.

The album itself consists mainly clips of older speeches, masses, and prayers given around the globe between 2013 and 2015 layered with music and repurposed hymns. Along with the music there is also outbreaks of applause and cheers which have the effect of making the album feel more like a vintage 60s style “live album” that was really made in the studio and dubbed with screaming fans.
The tracks on Wake Up! are varied and range between an almost light rap feeling to a heavy metal sensation. Don’t expect Pope Francis to start head banging and wearing black, but you will be treated to some echoing a rap beats with deep synth hums, ascending piano chords, wailing guitar, and even an organ. Give it a minute and you’ll likely hear the sound of trumpets blaring out a tune reminiscent of a Bond theme. Arrangements of choirs pile upon soft rock and the rearrangements of hymns, though clearly an attempt to make what is old new again, comes off as simply rather odd. Throughout Pope Francis speaks in various languages over the music, sometimes replaced with a definite rock voice belting out a short tune. And no, despite our greatest hopes, prayers even, it is definitely not the Pope singing there.

The result of this almost odd album is a hodge podge that will be hard to categorize though Believe Digital is promoting it as Christian Rock. It’s not merely gospel, it’s not metal but sounds like it at parts, and it’s certainly not relaxing enough to turn it on and sit back while you flip through the good book. In the end this album will most likely appeal to sample seekers who will undoubtedly find some unique riffs and samples to use, as well as lovers of kitch.

So where to find Wake Up!? Well iTunes of course is selling it but for those that are looking for a hard copy for collectability you may have to look through some record stores or go online. The Vatican released Wake Up! sandwiched between the extremely successful launches of Adele and Coldplay’s new albums, giving them a boost in sales in what was one of the weakest pre-Christmas schedules. Not only did this give Wake Up! quite a bit of attention but it also was the perfect time for some Christmas sales.

While Wake Up! is probably the best album released by a leader of one of the world’s largest faiths, and while many will find it an interesting album to own and have in their collection it’s doubtful that many will be flocking to the stores to purchase.

References:
1. http://www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2015/nov/27/pope-francis-new-album-wake-up-rock
2. http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/biography/documents/papa-francesco-biografia-bergoglio.html
3. http://www.believedigital.co.uk/
4. http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/chart-beat/6805727/adeles-25-no-1-on-billboard-200-album-chart-third-week-coldplay-a-head-full-of-dreams
5. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/pope-francis-to-release-pop-rock-album-wake-up-20150925