Genesis

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Matt Wilson
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Re: Genesis

Postby Matt Wilson » 19 Sep 2021, 23:41

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Peter Gabriel 1980
The ne plus ultra of his solo career in my always-humble view. I mean this is it - virtually every song counts. Peter is fully competing in the post-punk world of 1980. This album is as good (better?) as Scary Monsters, Get Happy!! (maybe), better than Iggy's Soldier, Pete's Empty Glass, Lou's Growing Up in Public, McCartney II, Graham's The Up Escalator, Jackson Browne's Hold Out, Jeff Beck's There and Back, Paul Simon's One Trick Pony, Tom Waits' Heartattack and Vine, Joe Jackson's Beat Crazy, Neil's Hawks & Doves, etc. - Just to pick some other solo LPs by artists who may or may not have been hustling for Gabriel's LP dollars/pounds.

Peter Gabriel – vocals, piano; synthesizer on "Start", "I Don't Remember", "Games Without Frontiers" and "Not One of Us"; drum pattern on "Biko"; backing vocals on "Intruder", "Family Snapshot" and "Not One of Us"; whistle on "Games Without Frontiers"
Larry Fast – synthesizer on "Intruder", "No Self Control", "Start", "Games Without Frontiers" and "Biko"; processing on "No Self Control", "I Don't Remember" and "Not One of Us"; bagpipes on "Biko"
David Rhodes – guitar on all tracks except "Start"; backing vocals on "Intruder", "I Don't Remember" and "Not One of Us"
Robert Fripp – electric guitar on "No Self Control", "I Don't Remember" and "Not One of Us"
Dave Gregory – electric guitar on "I Don't Remember" and "Family Snapshot"
Paul Weller – electric guitar on "And Through the Wire"
John Giblin – bass guitar on "No Self Control", "Family Snapshot", "And Through the Wire", "Games Without Frontiers" and "Not One of Us"
Tony Levin – Chapman Stick on "I Don't Remember"
Jerry Marotta – drums on "I Don't Remember", "Family Snapshot", "Games Without Frontiers", "Not One of Us", "Lead a Normal Life" and "Biko"; percussion on "Games Without Frontiers" and "Not One of Us"
Phil Collins – drums on "Intruder", "No Self Control" and "And Through the Wire"; drum pattern on "Intruder"; snare on "Family Snapshot"; surdo on "Biko"
Morris Pert – percussion on "Intruder", "No Self Control" and "Lead a Normal Life"
Dick Morrissey – saxophone on "Start", "Family Snapshot" and "Lead a Normal Life"
Kate Bush – backing vocals on "No Self Control" and "Games Without Frontiers"
Steve Lillywhite, Hugh Padgham – whistles on "Games Without Frontiers"
Dave Ferguson – screeches on "Biko"

All tracks are written by Peter Gabriel.

1. "Intruder" 4:54
Yes, love those funky drums and the weird synths. A creepy vibe permeates this track. Gabriel always started out his LPs with good songs and here is no exception. Only here the quality control holds up for most of the album as I will attempt to prove. Wiki - "Intruder" is a song written and performed by English musician Peter Gabriel. The song was the first to use the "gated reverb" drum sound created by Hugh Padgham and Phil Collins, with Collins performing the song's drum part. The gated drum effect was later used in Collins' own "In the Air Tonight", and appeared frequently through the 1980s, on records such as David Bowie's "Let's Dance" and The Power Station's "Some Like It Hot". The gated drum sound - which features heavily throughout the song - was stumbled upon by accident by Hugh Padgham when working with an early SSL Console at The Townhouse, which had noise gates and compressors built into every channel. It was due to a reverse talkback mic, which had heavy compression - the unbelievable sound came out when Collins was playing drums once he’d been talking."

2. "No Self Control" 3:55
Gabriel is definitely exploring some dark themes with this material - but that tendency was always there in his music, wasn't it? He can combine these uncomfortable images with cool music though. Gotta say, I love it.

"No Self Control" is a song written and performed by English rock musician Peter Gabriel. It was inspired by Steve Reich's composition Music for 18 Musicians. The song features guest musicians Robert Fripp (guitar), Phil Collins (drums) and Kate Bush (backing vocals).Prior to being recorded for Gabriel's 1980 album, the song was performed live under the working title "I don't know how to stop". Later live performances, such as on Plays Live, were slower and more subdued than the studio recording." Gabriel and his China 1984 touring band performed "No Self Control" on BBC One's Top of the Pops in May 1980." - Wikipedia

3. "Start" 1:21
Another short number functioning as a bridge or link to the next tune. Lots of recording artists did this. A showcase for Dick Morrissey's sax, really.

4. "I Don't Remember" 4:42
Heard this on the radio quite frequently in the eighties. Funky rhythm almost in a Talking Heads vein, and a catchy chorus make this one of the best tunes on the record.

Wiki: "I Don't Remember" is a song written and recorded by English rock musician Peter Gabriel, released as the fourth and final single from his third eponymous studio album in 1980. Although originally only released as an A-side single in the United States and Canada, a live version released with the album Plays Live (1983) reached No. 62 on the UK Singles Chart and remained in the Top 75 in Britain for 4 weeks. The song was included in Gabriel's compilation album Shaking the Tree (1990) and two different versions were included in Flotsam and Jetsam (2019).

The song was performed by Gabriel on the tour to promote his second eponymous studio album, having debuted on concert on 23 August 1978.

A studio recording of "I Don't Remember" was first made at Trident Studios, London in Autumn 1978 during a day off on the tour, by Gabriel and his backing band - which consisted of bassist Tony Levin, drummer Jerry Marotta, guitarist Sid McGinnis and synthesizer player Larry Fast. This marked the beginning of work on his third studio album. This early studio version of the song was originally planned to be released as the A-side of the first single from the album in Europe and Japan, however a Charisma Records executive thought the guitar solos were not radio-friendly. This version was later used as the B-side of the single "Games Without Frontiers" from Peter Gabriel (3: Melt) in those territories."

5. "Family Snapshot" 4:28
If I'm not partial to the slower Genesis numbers, then I feel the same way about Peter's dirges. My least fave thing on side one, even if the tempo does pick up. Wiki has plenty of background on it though. Typically, Pete is putting a darker spin in the words:

"The song was inspired by An Assassin's Diary, published in 1973 and written by Arthur Bremer, who, on May 15, 1972, attempted to assassinate George Wallace, a politician who supported racial segregation. Gabriel talked about the book in a 1988 authorized biography: An Assassin's Diary was a really nasty book, but you do get a sense of the person who is writing it. Bremer was obsessed with the idea of fame. He was aware of the news broadcasts all over the world and was trying to time the assassination to hit the early evening news in the States and the late night in Europe to get maximum coverage.

Gabriel stated in the introduction to the song during his concert at the Paramount Theatre, Seattle, 10 August 1983, that the song is, "partly taken from the writings of Arthur Bremer and The Diary of an Assassin and mixed with a few images of Dallas twenty years ago".

The musical transition reflects the progress and emotions throughout the story. It starts off as a slow, understated piece, where the killer goes through his plan, becoming more intense as the target unwittingly comes closer to the assassin. Finally, the song transitions back to a quiet, mournful climax as the shooter, having just shot his target, remembers his childhood loneliness and thirst for attention that led him to where he now is.

The recording features Gabriel's first use of the Yamaha CP-70 Electric Grand Piano." - Wikipedia

6. "And Through the Wire" 5:00
I like this one a lot too. He kept it up for most of the songs on the first side. More background: "Gabriel's ex-bandmate Phil Collins, who succeeded him as Genesis's lead vocalist, played drums on several of the album's tracks. "Intruder" has been cited as the first use of Collins's "gated drum" sound. This effect, as created by Steve Lillywhite, Collins and Hugh Padgham, was featured on Collins's and Genesis's recordings throughout the 1980s. The distinctive sound was identified via experiments by Lillywhite, Collins and Padgham, in response to Gabriel's request that Collins and Jerry Marotta not use cymbals during the album's sessions.

"Artists given complete freedom die a horrible death", Gabriel explained to Mark Blake. "So, when you tell them what they can't do, they get creative and say, 'Oh yes I can,' which is why I banned cymbals. Phil was cool about it. [Marotta] did object and it took him a while to settle in. It's like being right-handed and having to learn to write with your left." In an interview for Genesis: The Sum Of The Parts, Collins confirmed he was amenable to the request, but admitted asking Gabriel what he was supposed to do with his other hand.

So significant and influential was the sound that it has been claimed by Gabriel, Padgham, Collins, and Lillywhite. It was cited by Public Image Ltd as an influence on the sound of their album The Flowers of Romance, whose engineer, Nick Launay, was in turn employed by Collins to assist with his solo debut, Face Value. Paul Weller, who was recording with his band the Jam in a nearby studio, contributed guitar to "And Through the Wire". Gabriel believed Weller's intense guitar style was ideal for the track.

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7. "Games Without Frontiers" 4:06
One of his epic tunes and one clearly associated with his name too. Probably the second song I ever heard from Peter Gabriel on the radio after "Solsbury Hill."

Wikipedia - "Games Without Frontiers" is a song written and recorded by English rock musician Peter Gabriel. It was released on his 1980 self-titled solo album, where it included backing vocals by Kate Bush. The song's lyrics are interpreted as a commentary on war and international diplomacy being like children's games. The video includes film clips of Olympic events and scenes from the 1951 educational film Duck and Cover, which used a cartoon turtle to instruct US schoolchildren on what to do in case of nuclear attack. This forlorn imagery tends to reinforce the song's anti-war theme.

The single became Gabriel's first top-10 hit in the United Kingdom, peaking at No. 4, and – tied with 1986's "Sledgehammer" – his highest-charting song in the United Kingdom. It peaked at No. 7 in Canada, but only at No. 48 in the United States. The B-side of the single consisted of two tracks combined into one: "Start" and "I Don't Remember".

The song's title refers to Jeux Sans Frontières, a long-running TV show broadcast in several European countries. Teams representing a town or city in one of the participating countries would compete in games of skill, often while dressed in bizarre costumes. While some games were simple races, others allowed one team to obstruct another. The British version was titled It's a Knockout—words that Gabriel mentions in the lyrics.

"It seemed to have several layers to it", Gabriel observed. "I just began playing in a somewhat light-hearted fashion – 'Hans and Lottie ...' – so it looked, on the surface, as just kids. The names themselves are meaningless, but they do have certain associations with them. So it's almost like a little kids' activity room. Underneath that, you have the TV programme [and the] sort of nationalism, territorialism, competitiveness that underlies all that assembly of jolly people." The lyrics "Adolf builds a bonfire/Enrico plays with it" echo lines from Evelyn Waugh's V-J Day diary ("Randolph built a bonfire and Auberon fell into it").

Musically, "Games Without Frontiers" opens with a sliding guitar line followed by a mixture of acoustic and electronic percussion and synth bass. Additional guitar figures enter with Kate Bush's vocals. These elements create the "dark sonic environment" as described by AllMusic reviewer Steve Huey. Following the final chorus, the song segues into a percussion breakdown punctuated by synth and guitar effects."

8. "Not One of Us" 5:22
Solid deep cut which sounds like it could have been played on the radio had not other songs from this album been used for that purpose. This is the way Stephen views people who aren't prog goons on BCB. Just kidding, C!

"The album, produced by Gabriel and Lillywhite, was Gabriel's first and only release for Mercury Records in the United States, having been rejected by Atlantic Records, which had handled U.S. distribution for Gabriel's first two solo albums and his last two albums with Genesis. Upon hearing mixes of session tapes in early 1980, Atlantic A&R executive John Kalodner deemed the album not commercial enough for release, and recommended Atlantic drop Gabriel from its roster.

"Atlantic Records didn't want to put it out at all", Gabriel told Mark Blake. "Ahmet Ertegun said, 'What do people in America care about this guy in South Africa?' and 'Has Peter been in a mental hospital?' because there was this very weird track called 'Lead a Normal Life'. They thought I'd had a breakdown and recorded a piece of crap ... I thought I'd really found myself on that record, and then someone just squashes it. I went through some primordial rejection issues."

By the time the album was released by Mercury several months later, Kalodner – now working for the newly formed Geffen Records label and having realised his mistake – arranged for Geffen to pursue Gabriel as one of its first artist signings. Geffen (at the time distributed by Atlantic sister label Warner Bros. Records) reissued the album in 1983, after Mercury's rights to it lapsed, and marketed it in the United States until 2010, when Gabriel's back catalogue was reissued independently by Real World Records. Coincidentally, Mercury is now a sister label to Geffen after Mercury's parent PolyGram merged with Geffen's parent Universal Music Group in 1999." - Wiki


9. "Lead a Normal Life" 4:14
Enjoy those percussive sounds used in the beginning juxtaposed with the piano. Naturally, Gabriel can't create a pleasant story to go along with his sonic landscape, so this number is about being in a mental institution. LOL. I don't want to give the wrong impression though - I like it. "Gabriel jokingly summarised the album's themes as "The history of a decaying mind". He added: "State of mind was definitely an area of interest at the time of writing it, but I never really set out with a concept. It was merely different songs, which perhaps have fitted into one particular slant." Of "No Self Control", he said: "That's something which I've observed in myself and in other people… In a state of depression, you have to turn on the radio, or switch on the television, go to the fridge and eat, and sleeping is difficult." - Wikipedia

10. "Biko" 7:32
Easily my favorite thing on this disc. A masterpiece, in fact - and a song that Genesis couldn't have written because these lyrical concerns don't trouble them it seems.

Wiki - "Biko" is an anti-apartheid protest song by English rock musician Peter Gabriel. It was released by Charisma Records as a single from Gabriel's eponymous third album in 1980.

The song is a musical eulogy, inspired by the death of the black South African anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko in police custody on 12 September 1977. Gabriel wrote the song after hearing of Biko's death on the news. Influenced by Gabriel's growing interest in African musical styles, the song carried a sparse two-tone beat played on Brazilian drum and vocal percussion, in addition to a distorted guitar, and a synthesised bagpipe sound. The lyrics, which included phrases in Xhosa, describe Biko's death and the violence under the apartheid government. The song is book-ended with recordings of songs sung at Biko's funeral: the album version begins with "Ngomhla sibuyayo" and ends with "Senzeni Na?", while the single versions end with "Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika".

"Biko" reached No. 38 on the British charts, and was positively received, with critics praising the instrumentation, the lyrics, and Gabriel's vocals. A 2013 commentary called it a "hauntingly powerful" song, while review website AllMusic described it as a "stunning achievement for its time". It was banned in South Africa, where the government saw it as a threat to security. "Biko" was a personal landmark for Gabriel, becoming one of his most popular songs and sparking his involvement in human rights activism. It also had a huge political impact, and along with other contemporary music critical of apartheid, is credited with making resistance to apartheid part of western popular culture. It inspired musical projects such as Sun City, and has been called "arguably the most significant non-South African anti-apartheid protest song".

High fucking praise, indeed.

More: "The lyrics of the song begin in a manner similar to a news story, saying "September '77/Port Elizabeth, weather fine". The next lines mention "police room 619", the room in the police station of Port Elizabeth in which Biko was beaten. The English lyrics are broken up by the Xhosa phrase "Yila Moja" (also transliterated "Yehla Moya") meaning "Come Spirit": the phrase has been read as a call to Biko's spirit to join the resistance movement, and as a suggestion that though Biko was dead, his spirit was still alive.

The tone of the songs shifts after the first verse, growing more defiant, and the second verse of the song criticises the violence under apartheid, with Gabriel singing about trying to sleep but being able to "only dream in red" because of his anger at the death of black people. The lyrics of the third verse seek to motivate the listener: "You can blow out a candle/But you can't blow out a fire/Once the flames begin to catch/The wind will blow it higher", suggesting that though Biko is dead, the movement against apartheid would continue. The lyrics express a sense of outrage, not only at the suffering of people under apartheid, but at the fact that that suffering was often forgotten or denied.

Gabriel incorporated three songs by other composers into his recording. The album version of the songs start with an excerpt from the South African song "Ngomhla sibuyayo" and ends with a recording of the South African song "Senzeni Na?", as sung at Biko's funeral. The 7- and 12-inch single versions ended instead with an excerpt from "Nkosi Sikelel iAfrika", a song which would later become South Africa's National Anthem. The German version of the song began and ended with "Nkosi Sikelel iAfrika". The recording ends with a double drum beat reminiscent of gun shots that cuts off the singers at the funeral, seen as representing a repressive government.

The recording at the beginning of the song fades into a two-toned percussion, played on a Brazilian Surdo drum, described by Gabriel as the "spine of the piece". "Biko" makes use of a "hypnotic" drum beat throughout the song, influenced strongly by African rhythms Gabriel had heard. In particular, Gabriel would credit the soundtrack LP Dingaka with influencing the percussion of the track. Music scholar Michael Drewett writes that Gabriel tried to create an "exotic" African beat "without really approximating the sound he imitated", thus creating a "pseudo-African" beat. The tune is punctuated with vocal percussive sounds that have a "primordial" feeling, combining Gaelic and African influences. The drums are overlaid with an artificially distorted two-chord guitar sound, which fades out briefly during the vocal percussion, before returning during the first verse.

The first verse describing Biko's death is followed by a distinct chord change before the Xhosa invocation "Yehla Moya". The sound of bagpipes, created with a synthesiser, enters the song during the interlude between the verses. Played in a "mournful" minor key, they have been variously described as creating a "funeral" and a "militaristic" atmosphere. The bagpipes continue alongside the drums and guitar through the second verse, followed by an interlude identical to the first. A snare drum is also added to the sound for the second and third verses. The third verse concludes with a non-verbal chant following the chord progression of the song, while the climax is a chorus of male voices, accompanied by bagpipes and drums."

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Last edited by Matt Wilson on 20 Sep 2021, 20:38, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Genesis

Postby Neil Jung » 20 Sep 2021, 09:33

Duke. Nice review. Makes me want to listen to it again.
I remember phoning in sick from my first job so I could buy this album on day of release. I wasn’t disappointed. The disappointment, the betrayal, started with the next album.
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Re: Genesis

Postby Neil Jung » 20 Sep 2021, 16:01

I played Duke. It was ok. Maybe over familiarity lessens its merits.
I then put on a much later Genesis CD single featuring former Stiltskin vocalist Ray Wilson and realised I now much prefer the latter’s vocals to Collins’.
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Re: Genesis

Postby Neil Jung » 21 Sep 2021, 20:18

I’m surprised nobody here has posted about last night’s opening of the Genesis tour in Birmingham. I didn’t go, but I’ve watched the documentary and as many YouTube clips from the gig as I could stand. The light show looked fabulous, the set list wasn’t as bad as it might have been, Daryl Stuermer made his usual hash of the Firth Of Fifth solo, and Phil Collins…. Well, Phil had to sit down and sing with a raspy voice that had lost access to the higher notes. He was helped out by a couple of backing singers but I found it to be a painful and sad watch.
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Re: Genesis

Postby The Slider » 23 Sep 2021, 08:08

I just watched a couple of clips and it was pitiful
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Re: Genesis

Postby Lord Rother » 23 Sep 2021, 10:44

The Guardian seemed to like it.

https://www.theguardian.com/music/2021/ ... birmingham
Collins is drily funny between songs, and whatever else has happened to him, his voice still sounds strong;

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Re: Genesis

Postby Mike Boom » 23 Sep 2021, 19:21

The Slider wrote:I just watched a couple of clips and it was pitiful


Yeah, the clips Ive seen Phil has completely lost his vocal range , just as painful as watching Ian Anderson trying to sing these days, very sad really.

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Re: Genesis

Postby Matt Wilson » 23 Sep 2021, 21:48

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Face Value - Phil Collins 1981
For most people, Phil's divorce album is the only one of his you need, and for some of us, they don't even need this one. My ex-wife told me this was her fave Collins LP, so I bought an Atlantic gold disc for her and she never played it. I've got it sitting in a closet somewhere - but I'm not about to spend time looking for something it would take me twenty minutes to find. I'll listen to it here at work (it's after school) on youtube and get paid for writing and cutting and pasting from wiki. Some background on the making of the LP: ”By 1978, Phil Collins had been a member of English progressive rock band Genesis for almost eight years. After spending the first five as their drummer, he reluctantly accepted the role of front man of the group in 1975 following the departure of the band's original singer, Peter Gabriel. Three years later, after departure of guitarist Steve Hackett, Genesis' nine-month world tour to promote ...And Then There Were Three... (1978) became problematic for Collins's wife Andrea who complained that he was not at home enough and that should he commit to the full tour, she would not be there when he returned. Collins, however, maintained that the band were on the cusp of international breakthrough and the tour would pay dividends for the future. However, at the end of the tour, Andrea decided to take their two children to her parents in Vancouver, Canada. In an attempt to save his marriage, Collins moved to Vancouver, but it failed and returned to England in April 1979 with Andrea having agreed to return with the children.” - Wiki


Phil Collins – vocals, drums (1, 3, 6, 7, 9–12), Roland VP-330 vocoder (1, 6, 10), CR-78 drum machine (1, 6, 12), Prophet-5 synthesizer (1, 2, 5–7, 10–12), Fender Rhodes (1, 2, 9, 11), percussion (2, 10), piano (4–8, 10), handclaps (5, 9), congas (5), marimba (6), acoustic guitar (13)
Daryl Stuermer – guitars (1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 11, 12), banjo (4), 12-string guitar (5)
Eric Clapton – guitar (4, 11)
Joe Partridge – slide guitar (4)
John Giblin – bass guitar (1, 9, 10, 12)
Alphonso Johnson – bass (2, 3, 6, 7, 11)
L. Shankar – violin (1, 5, 7, 12), tamboura (5), "voice drums" (5)
J. Peter Robinson – Prophet-5 (3)
Stephen Bishop – background vocals (2)
Arif Mardin – string arrangements (8, 11)
EWF Horns – horns
Don Myrick – tenor saxophone (3, 6, 7, 9, 12), alto sax solo (11)
Louis Satterfield – trombone (3, 6, 7, 9, 12)
Rahmlee Michael Davis and Michael Harris – trumpets (3, 6, 7, 9, 12), flugelhorns (11)
Ronnie Scott – tenor saxophone solo (7)
Music preparation – Maurice Spears
Other background vocals on tracks 6 and 12 by several children’s choirs in Los Angeles
Strings on tracks 8 and 11 conducted by Martyn Ford
Violins – Gavyn Wright (leader), Bill Benhem, Bruce Dukov, David Woodcock, Liz Edwards, Irvine Arditti, Ken Sillitoe, Peter Oxen and Richard Studt
Viola – Roger Best, Brian Hawkins and Simon Whistler
Cello – Tony Pleeth, Clive Anstee and Nigel Warren-Green
Double bass – Chris Lawrence

All tracks are written by Phil Collins, except where noted.

1. "In the Air Tonight" 5:34
If you could pick one solo-Phil song to encapsulate his appeal, I guess this would be it. It would have made a fine Genesis cut on either Duke or Abacab, but had he saved his best cuts for the mother-group, we wouldn't have had such fine numbers as "Sussudio." Just kidding, folks. No, really, it's great, and who can forget that drum break, eh?

"In the Air Tonight" remains one of Collins' best-known hits, often cited as his signature song, and is especially famous for its drum break towards the end, which has been described as "the sleekest, most melodramatic drum break in history" and one of the "101 Greatest Drumming Moments". Collins wrote the song amid the grief he felt after divorcing his first wife Andrea Bertorelli in 1980. In a 2016 interview, Collins said of the song's lyrics: "I wrote the lyrics spontaneously. I'm not quite sure what the song is about, but there's a lot of anger, a lot of despair and a lot of frustration." In a 1997 BBC Radio 2 documentary, the singer revealed that the divorce contributed to his 1979 hiatus from the band Genesis, until they regrouped in October of that year to record the album, Duke. Originally, Collins was going to include the song on Duke, but it was rejected by the band; Tony Banks later regretted the decision.

It has been described as being "at the vanguard of experimental pop" in 1981 and "a rock oddity classic", having been influenced by "the unconventional studio predilections of Brian Eno and Peter Gabriel". Musically, the song consists of a series of ominous chords played on a Sequential Circuits Prophet-5 over a simple drum machine pattern (the Roland CR-78 Disco-2 pattern, plus some programming); processed electric guitar sounds and vocoded vocals, an effect which is increased on key words to add additional atmosphere. The mood is one of restrained anger until the final chorus when an explosive burst of drums finally releases the musical tension and the instrumentation explodes into a thunderous crescendo.

Collins has described obtaining the drum machine specifically to deal with personal issues relating to his divorce through songwriting, telling Mix magazine: "I had to start writing some of this music that was inside me". He improvised the lyrics during a songwriting session in the studio: "I was just fooling around. I got these chords that I liked, so I turned the mic on and started singing. The lyrics you hear are what I wrote spontaneously. That frightens me a bit, but I'm quite proud of the fact that I sang 99.9 percent of those lyrics spontaneously". - Wikipedia

2. "This Must Be Love" 3:55
Another slowly-paced song where Phil gets to use his ballad voice. Interesting percussion (of course), but I can see how this wouldn't be a Genesis track. Pleasant, as far as these things go - and I don't mind it at all.

Wiki: "Collins produced the album himself with assistance from Hugh Padgham, who would co-produce several of Collins and Genesis's subsequent albums in the 1980s. Initially he considered George Clinton, Maurice White, or Phil Ramone until he realized that he merely wanted someone to endorse his own ideas. Assistant recording engineer Nick Launay was hired after Collins was impressed with his work with Public Image Limited. Collins was dissatisfied with initial test cuts of the album, describing them like a Queen album, "big, British and upfront". He then listened to several black albums including ones by The Jacksons and a collection of soul artists in his own collection, and noticed a common link with technician Mike Reece who worked at a Los Angeles mastering lab. Reece prepared a cut which Collins was satisfied with."

3. "Behind the Lines" (lyrics by Mike Rutherford; music by Tony Banks, Phil Collins and Rutherford) 3:53
Collins recut this Genesis number as a funky, more R&B-flavored cut - which certainly sounds more like something you'd hear on one of his solo LPs than a Genesis record. I like it fine but generally prefer the Duke version. Wiki - "Behind the Lines" was originally recorded by Genesis on the Duke album as a progressive rock number. Collins worked up a horn-driven R&B/funk-inspired arrangement after speeding up the tape on the Genesis version and thinking that the sped-up version sounded like a Michael Jackson song.”

4. "The Roof Is Leaking" 3:16
Probably the least of the tunes on side one. Wiki says it has "Delta blues and country elements,” but I'm not so sure about that. He's definitely depressed about things as he is on so many songs from this period, but for some reason this one doesn't stick with me.

5. "Droned" 2:49
Instrumental track serving as a link to the next cut, which is also sans vocals. Together they are possibly the most experimental music on the record, but hardly a threat to Genesis during their '70 - '76 heyday.“Four songs that Collins wrote during the Face Value sessions were ultimately omitted: "Misunderstanding" and "Please Don't Ask" which appeared in the Genesis album Duke, "How Can You Just Sit There" (which evolved into his 1984 single "Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)"), and what would become "Don't Lose My Number", which would not appear until Collins' third album No Jacket Required in 1985.” - Wikipedia


6. "Hand in Hand" 5:20
Wiki says "Droned" and "Hand in Hand" are progressive rock instrumentals, with the first featuring an Indian raga sound, while "Hand in Hand" features jazz elements, a black children's choir from Los Angeles humming the music, and improvisational instrumentation by Collins and the Phenix Horns.”

And there you have it.

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7. "I Missed Again" 3:41
A hit on both sides of the Atlantic, and a great side-opener which almost rivals "In the Air Tonight" (but not really) in its ubiquity on US radio stations in the eighties. Catchy as hell, and I can't help but contemplate taking out one of Abacab's lesser numbers in favor of this little ear worm. Alas, 'twas not to be. Wikipedia: "Like many of the songs on Face Value, "I Missed Again" is about Collins's anger and frustration about his first wife leaving him. The original demo was entitled "I Miss You, Babe", with sadder lyrics - this demo version was later released as a B-side of "If Leaving Me Is Easy". He re-wrote the lyrics, gave the song a different tempo, and re-titled it "I Missed Again" in an effort to make it lighthearted instead of sad."


8. "You Know What I Mean" 2:33
Piano-led, with Phil's usual somber vocals and the divorce theme present. No better nor worse than most of these cuts.
Wikipedia: “The simple style of music on Face Value was reasoned by Collins as his fondness of Weather Report's simple melodies and for black music. Collins controversially included drum programming rather than just live drum instrumentation despite his reputation as a drummer. Collins said he wanted to experiment with different sounds and was inspired by the work of his former band mate Peter Gabriel, who had used drum programming on his last album; Collins was part of these sessions. Many of the songs' arrangements were done by Collins and session arranger Thomas "Tom Tom 84" Washington. He incorporated Indian-styled violins, played by L. Shankar, for additional textures.”


9. "Thunder and Lightning" 4:12
A bit faster tempo differentiates this from the norm. Not bad, and I can hear Genesis making more of this than Phil did.

“Robin Smith of Record Mirror highlighted the album's emotional restraint, commenting that it plays less like a statement of "raw emotion" and more like a "diary" of Collins' "disappointments, hopes and fantasies". In Sounds, Hugh Fielder said that it effectively captured Collins' "multi-faceted" musicality with songs ranging "from funky beat to melancholic ballads with occasional pop and avant garde twinges." Melody Maker's Allan Jones considered Face Value a compelling stylistic divergence from Collins' work in Genesis, writing that the album "delights in confounding the familiar parameters" of the band's music. Rolling Stone critic Steve Pond was more reserved in his praise. He complimented Collins for forgoing Genesis' "high-blown conceits" for a simpler sound rooted in "basic pop and R&B", but found that "[his] broken heart is too clearly on his sleeve, and musical missteps abound".] Pond nonetheless deemed it "unmistakably the most worthy Genesis product" since Peter Gabriel's 1977 debut album.” - Wiki


10. "I'm Not Moving" 2:33
Phil sings this in a higher register than normal, otherwise business as usual. Probably would have sounded good on the radio but there were other cuts used for that purpose. Wiki says: ”The album features songs of different genres. While technically a rock and pop offering, the basis of many of the tracks lies in R&B with light funk influences, especially in "I'm Not Moving", for which Collins sang his backgrounds with a vocoder.”

11. "If Leaving Me Is Easy" 4:54
With a title like this you can probably guess what the song is about. Starts with a sax, and goes on from there. A British hit, apparently. Though I've certainly never heard this on the radio."If Leaving Me Is Easy" is a song by Phil Collins from his 1981 album Face Value. Released as the third single from the album, it reached No. 17 in the UK, but was not released as a single in the United States. Collins sings in a high falsetto in its chorus. The song was later covered by The Isley Brothers for their 1985 album Masterpiece. This was the first of two Phil Collins singles that featured Eric Clapton. The other single was "I Wish It Would Rain Down" from Collins' final album of the 1980s, ...But Seriously. He also recorded some dobro for "The Roof Is Leaking", which was not used on the final recording." - Wikipedia


12. "Tomorrow Never Knows" (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) 4:15
Not a Beatles track that is covered much – or at least I haven’t heard too many. It’s pretty good, I guess, and I remember it served as a conversation piece at the time as not too many prog veterans were doing Fabs songs then. A nice way to end things, but then there was a little more to come…

Wikipedia: “Collins regarded Face Value as a highly personal project, which gave rise to the iconic cover art with Collins' face in extreme close-up, originally intended to symbolize the listener "getting into his head"; the reverse side of the sleeve shows the rear of his head, although the CD version of the album placed this image on the insert card instead. To emphasize the personal nature of the album, Collins also hand wrote all of the liner and sleeve notes, even down to the legal statements on the outer circumference of the center label of the disc itself. Both of the main visual elements of Face Value — the facial close-up, and the handwritten notes — would become a motif of Collins' subsequent albums until 1996's Dance into the Light. When crediting the musicians in the liner notes, rather than write "Phil Collins", Collins simply wrote "Me", although in future albums he would write his initials "PC".


13. "Over the Rainbow" (unlisted track, except on cassette release WEA 1981) (lyrics by E.Y. Harburg; music by Harold Arlen ) 0:37
”The cover of The Beatles' "Tomorrow Never Knows" includes instruments and vocals playing in reverse while Collins provided multi-layered background vocals and sparse drumming. After the song ends, Collins can be heard quietly singing "Over the Rainbow" in reference to the recent murder of John Lennon; this final song is unlisted on most releases of the album (the original US cassette version being an exception), and would be the only time Collins used a hidden track on one of his own releases.” - Wiki

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Neil Jung
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Re: Genesis

Postby Neil Jung » 23 Sep 2021, 22:39

My recollection of Face Value is that it was a surprise to many including me just how bloody good it was!
[indistinct chatter]

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Re: Genesis

Postby Lord Rother » 23 Sep 2021, 22:50

Mike Boom wrote:
The Slider wrote:I just watched a couple of clips and it was pitiful


Yeah, the clips Ive seen Phil has completely lost his vocal range , just as painful as watching Ian Anderson trying to sing these days, very sad really.


Yeah, I couldn’t watch it - despite the money that presumably is rolling in at those astronomical ticket prices, I suspect it hurts Phil as much as it does us which is very sad. :cry:

I’m not sure he’ll be able to get through the whole tour without breaking down.

Damn.

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Re: Genesis

Postby Lord Rother » 23 Sep 2021, 22:52

Lord Rother wrote:The Guardian seemed to like it.

https://www.theguardian.com/music/2021/ ... birmingham
Collins is drily funny between songs, and whatever else has happened to him, his voice still sounds strong;


WTF - that guy shouldn’t be writing about music if he thinks his voice still sounds strong.

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Re: Genesis

Postby bobzilla77 » 24 Sep 2021, 04:09

I think in these days, it's understood that the talent may not be quite as up to it as was once expected. If he hawked it up roughly in tune, and didn't forget too many words, well that's better what some of those geezers can still do.
Jimbo wrote:I guess I am over Graham Nash's politics. Hopelessly naive by the standards I've molded for myself these days.

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Re: Genesis

Postby C » 24 Sep 2021, 09:06

Neil Jung wrote:I remember phoning in sick from my first job so I could buy this album on day of release.


:o

No wonder the country is in the state it's in

Disgraceful behaviour!




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slightbreeze wrote:
C wrote:Will Barclay James Harvest feature well.....?

If we get as far as a top 100, I'd certainly consider it

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Re: Genesis

Postby C » 24 Sep 2021, 09:19

Mike Boom wrote:
The Slider wrote:I just watched a couple of clips and it was pitiful


Yeah, the clips Ive seen Phil has completely lost his vocal range


Very sad.

There is a time to stop.

I watched some clips too. Painful really and such a shame

What was to gain? (except sackfuls of dosh)

It wasn't just his voice though.It was his lack of presence - and it was nothing to do with the lad sitting down

Sad




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slightbreeze wrote:
C wrote:Will Barclay James Harvest feature well.....?

If we get as far as a top 100, I'd certainly consider it

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Re: Genesis

Postby C » 24 Sep 2021, 09:21

Incidentally, the boys tubs aren't a patch on his old man's!



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slightbreeze wrote:
C wrote:Will Barclay James Harvest feature well.....?

If we get as far as a top 100, I'd certainly consider it

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Re: Genesis

Postby The Slider » 24 Sep 2021, 12:04

Neil Jung wrote:My recollection of Face Value is that it was a surprise to many including me just how bloody good it was!


I loved it at the time and still hold it in high regard now.
He got better at the whole pop music thing on the second one though.
You could make an absolute 5 star album out of the two

In The Air Tonight 5:27
I Cannot Believe It's True 5:14
The Roof Is Leaking 3:15
Droned 2:49
Hand In Hand 5:20



I Don't Care Anymore 5:00
It Don't Matter To Me 4:12
Thru These Walls 5:02
The West Side 4:59
If Leaving Me Is Easy 4:54
Complete Prince Mp3 set - on a purple usb drive - available in the usual place if anyone wants it
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Re: Genesis

Postby Lord Rother » 24 Sep 2021, 13:47

Yes, I prefer Hello, I Must Be Going.

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Re: Genesis

Postby C » 24 Sep 2021, 15:32

I've never heard Face Value and don't think I want to.

The first four Gabriel albums are superb.

The order of preference has altered over the years - many times - but I thinkmthisis as it stands at the moment:

2
1
3
4

So is a dog's breakfast (although I enjoyed it at the time) and the rest never grabbed me and I don't own them




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slightbreeze wrote:
C wrote:Will Barclay James Harvest feature well.....?

If we get as far as a top 100, I'd certainly consider it

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Re: Genesis

Postby Mike Boom » 24 Sep 2021, 16:06

Face Value still sounds good to me, its a pity he didn't go more in the Droned , Hand in Hand, Tomorrow Never Knows direction , all of which have a slight Eno, Fripp type vibe to them, instead of the Motown route. Would have been much more interesting.

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Re: Genesis

Postby Hightea » 24 Sep 2021, 18:54

Matt Wilson wrote:Image
Peter Gabriel 1978
Not as interesting nor as diverse as the debut and also front-loaded in that the first few songs are probably the best. This is nonetheless, another brilliant burst of energy from our Pietro which - in its best moments, puts his old band to shame. I don't mind And Then There Were Three at all, and I'll get to that soon (today, hopefully), but Genesis was treading water after the loss of Hackett - going (like so many progressive rock bands who'd been in the game for a long time by the late seventies) in a more commercial direction rather than explore new territory. Seeing the success they achieved with this path, it's hard to fault them, but I admire Gabriel's willingness to reinvent himself so spectacularly and with such grand results.

Peter Gabriel – vocals; Hammond organ on 11; piano on 2; synthesizer on 5, 7
Robert Fripp – electric guitar on 1, 3, 5, 10; acoustic guitar on 5; Frippertronics on 8
Tony Levin – bass guitar on 1, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11; Chapman stick on 2, 4, 9; string bass on 6; recorder arrangements on 6, 9; backing vocals on 1, 4, 7, 10, 11
Roy Bittan – keyboards on 1, 3, 5, 6, 10, 11
Larry Fast – synthesizer, treatments on 1, 2, 5, 7, 10
Jerry Marotta – drums on all except 3; backing vocals on 1, 4, 10, 11
Sid McGinnis – electric guitar on 1, 4, 8, 9, 10, 11; acoustic guitar on 2, 3; steel guitar on 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 11; mandolin on 2; backing vocals on 7
Bayeté (Todd Cochran) – keyboards on 2, 4, 6, 7
Tim Cappello – saxophone on 10, 11
George Marge – recorder on 6, 8, 9
John Tims – insects on 3

All tracks are written by Peter Gabriel, except where noted.

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1. "On the Air" 5:30
The opening sounds are almost Genesis-like until the drums and guitar blast out of the speakers and Peter's new wave type (is that what this is?) fills the room. Love this track and if this is what writing a song for radio exposure sounds like, give me more. Pye Hastings and co. couldn't come up with something like this if you held guns to their heads. Fripp's up to his usual high standards with the guitar sounds (I really should get to a Crimson thread soon). Out-fucking-standing.

2. "D.I.Y." 2:37
What do you know - another kick-ass tune. He's promoting the do-it-yourself ethos that punks espoused at the time and it suits him just fine, thank you. After all, that's exactly what he's doing with this album. Separating himself from his old band and establishing a new persona on the English music stage during the era of punk couldn't have been easy.

3. "Mother of Violence" (Peter Gabriel, Jill Gabriel) 3:10
Beautiful track written with his then wife, Jill, this abrupt change of pace features nice piano by Roy Bittan of the E St. Band. I don't know why but I tend to pay attention to Gabriel's lyrics more on his solo albums than I did previously. A more down-to-earth approach suits these songs.

Wiki - "In the NME in 1978, Nick Kent wrote: "Its brazenly left-field veneer left me cold at first, and it's only now that its strengths are starting to come across ... once past the disarming non-focus veneer, there's a quietly remarkable talent at work – quiet in the manner of the slow fuse burn of 'Mother of Violence' with Roy Bittan's piano work outstripping anything he's turned out for either Bruce Springsteen or David Bowie. Closer to the root of the album, there's a purity, a strength to the songs individual enough to mark Gabriel out as a man whose creative zenith is close at hand."

4. "A Wonderful Day in a One-Way World" 3:33
Well, Peter's English, so cod-reggae had to be here somewhere, right? I do find myself singing along though despite myself. I've got the SACDs of these first four Gabriel discs because I wasn't satisfied with the way the CDs sounded. Come to think of it - I'm not too crazy about the sound quality of Genesis CDs either.

5. "White Shadow" 5:14
I guess this ballad might be my least fave cut on the first side, and if I had to choose, it sounds the most like Genesis. Nothing wrong with it, don't get me wrong, it's just not memorable to me. This album seems to be the runt of the litter of the first four of his LPs, and I guess I concur. But I give it points for originality, audacity, and staying power. Unless I change my mind when I play And Then There Were Three next, I think I prefer it to what his old bandmates were doing. Ooo, there's a nice Fripp solo playing at the moment.

Image Image

6. "Indigo" 3:30
Hmm, I wouldn't have opened up side two with a slow number, but I'm not the artist, so...

7. "Animal Magic" 3:26
Now this is more to my liking, but I've always gravitated to up-tempo tracks. Check out these song lengths. Our boy was prog no more.

8. "Exposure" (Peter Gabriel, Robert Fripp) 4:12
Peter's big number with Robert Fripp is interesting in its use of the soundscape. Wonder if the multis are still around and if any of his early albums could be presented in 5.1. This would sound great in that format. Wikipedia: "The album did not sell as well as the first Peter Gabriel, but reached No. 10 in the UK. In the US, the album was titled Peter Gabriel II. The album is also often referred to as Scratch, referring to the album cover by Hipgnosis. The influence of producer Robert Fripp is evident in the use of "Frippertronics" on the track "Exposure".

Having said all that - the track is interesting sonically, but goes nowhere as a tune. Just keeping it real, folks!

9. "Flotsam and Jetsam" 2:17
The record is running out of steam, and this little ditty should have been a rocker to pick up the momentum a bit as we near the finish line.

10. "Perspective" 3:23
And here is said rocker. Unfortunately, it's a tad mundane in its repetitiveness. The sax is nice though - why do saxophones always remind me of New York City?

11. "Home Sweet Home" 4:37
I like this one, but it starts out too slow and contains some shocking verses. Sometimes when Pete is trying something new musically, it works better than when he stays in his comfort zone.

Image Image

another nice write up but I disagree with your assessment of side two. Indigo, animal magic, exposure, flotsam and Jetsam (love) Perspective and Home Sweet Home are all good to great songs. I find the first 4 Gabriel solo albums all excellent and way better that anything Genesis did after Trick/W & W.