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Genesis - A Trick of the Tail CD (album) cover

A TRICK OF THE TAIL

Genesis

 

Symphonic Prog

4.27 | 1803 ratings

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clarke2001
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Gabrielless prog's masterpiece.

Well, no, it's not bad at all, said I, after a few listenings. No Peter here. OK, this is just another band. Listen and enjoy. I will. Actually, it's not. What? Another band. I don't have that impression. So, you're trying to tell me that Phil guy actually can sing.

But we knew that already.

After the first seconds of listening of those crazy diminished guitar chords on "Dance On A Volcano", we are aware that the guys didn't lost the plot. And production is very good; Nursery Cryme days are gone for good. This is focused, but not conceptual; mature, but not boring; brilliant but not a masterpiece. Hm. I really should leave that sentence for the end of the review. But it is, it's obvious. Actually it is a masterpiece - a masterpiece of between-Gabriel's-presence and Hackett's-unpresence period.

What is going on?

Two brilliant tracks. Two very good tracks. One very significant track. A lovely overture. And the rest, with its ups and downs, but filling the album perfectly. Actually, "filling" is not a good word because it will leave a bad impression. And there is no song here that left a bad impression on me. Some are weaker, but still very enjoyable.

The weakest one is, perhaps, "Squonk". I find it a little bit boring. Actually, quite boring. I am fed up with that one. Lovely lyrics though. About a small pool of tears. No. If you just read the comments attached to each song written in the inner sleeve you'll get the idea. The song is a perfect bridge - perfect, I said - between two Genesis' era. Traces of Phil's 80's are here, and 70's are still present.

"Robbery, Assault And Battery". What a lovely title it is. That is important because if you agree with me on that, you might agree with me on the other points as well, and find my impressions valuable for your young, intact, roseing musical knowledge. Knowledge. Guys from the band know how to do it better than that. Cheesy chorus and cheddar lyrics. Robbery, assault and battery. A felon and his felony. The rest of the songs is good. I assure you.

"Los Endos". Now, this number can won in competition for the most stupid song title in the history of progressive rock. Maybe not. If you know any others, feel free to inform me; I'm curious and I don't know why. That's because I'm a masochist I guess. The song is actually an overture and it consists excerpts of other songs on this album. Spooky at the moments, brilliant all the time.

Are the emotions changing over the years and decades? Of course they are changing. I didn't mean that. I mean, is it possible that an emotion, let's say love, anger, melancholy is not globally the same in the different decades. Anger of the seventies is not anger of the nineties? Love in the sixties is not love in the eighties? Well, that's the case with "Ripples". It's lovely song, and it's pure melancholy. But seventies melancholy, not this modern one. Listen to the Emerson Lake and Palmer's "Take A Pebble", for example. You will find the same example of the feeling. Actually it reminds me more of Pavlov's Dog.

I'm often wondering if it's possible to be 100% polite. I mean, if I wrote the word puka, that means nothing. Right. I speak three languages (and I wave my hands in several more languages) but I can't remember if the word puka is insulting, offensive expletive in any of these languages. On the other hand, there are several thousands languages around the globe, so that word must be offensive somewhere (or if applied) to someone. Quite possible; "A Trick Of The Tail" is maybe to worst possible swearing somewhere on Earth. On a second thought, "A Trick Of The Tail" could be even in English interpreted quite kinky. I apologise if anyone ever got offended by Genesis' song. It's quite nice epic, actually.

I hate when my brain tries to explain to my heart that it's wrong. I hate when I'm wrong. For example, I absolutely adore the song "Entangled". It contains some dreamy, floydian feeling. That's strange, I'm not fan of Pink Floyd. But I love The Stranglers. And this song, in a same way as "Golden Brown" does it, contains slow waltzer tempo, with one bar added at the end of the verse. Just too good to be true. After the pathos of last verse (I don't want to spoil the party, you have to hear it to believe it), the song flows into the seas and shore of lovely string-like keyboards. That part of the song is maybe a little bit too protracted and it should have been more developed. See? That's what I was talking about! I like the song as a whole! What's the use of phrases like should have been more developed? Sorry, I left the question mark inside italic. Now it's corrected: "?".

Anyway, what's the use of using of loads of italicized or bolded fonts inside a review? It gives a certain significance. It looks more mature and analytical. It's proving that you're a smart guy capable of using the text codes. If you didn't noticed yet (didn't noticed? I never knew if that's correct perfect tense. Alas, my English!), the point of a review is to get your attention on a certain album, and I am doing it with a good reason, because this is good album. What else should I do? Maybe I should start writing reviews with Irish accent? How would ya loike that? On a second thought, I'm writing in Irish way already; Joyce was Irish. Or maybe I should explain in a old-fashioned, conventional way, that "Dance On A Volcano" is an astonishing song, with excellent keyboard solos within the 7/8 time measure, a lovely collage of different parts ranging from dreamy to furious? It is. Even the lyrics are, good, although I never liked Collins' "ho ho ho" somewhere in the middle of the song. This is not Jethro Tull's Christmas album, mind you.

The number of the stars this album deserves is equal to the number of progressive rock fans worldwide who are actually glad that Collins replaced Gabriel. And there's no Gabriel here, and this is an excellent progressive rock album. There something to think about. Or not. Thanks, Hackett. And everyone else.

clarke2001 | 4/5 |

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