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Genesis - Selling England by the Pound CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.64 | 4261 ratings

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5 stars Genesis's 'Selling England By The Pound' is, in my humble opinion, the finest piece of progressive rock ever crafted, and possibly one of the finest records from any genre of music. It has stood the test of time remarkably well and become the yardstick by which all other progressive works are to be measured. If ever there was a record to begin a journey into progressive rock with it is this one.

It was entirely by chance I discovered 'Selling England By The Pound', and I owe it all to a friend of mine at university who was obsessed with Gabriel era Genesis and would play Genesis at all hours of the day! Through him I discovered this classic, as well as the other early Genesis albums. It was this record which turned me from a heavy metal listener into a classic 70's prog-rock fan, and I'm not sure anything else would have succeeded in doing that. I was mesmerized and entranced by the music on here, and to this day I still hold it in the highest respect.

In this album we find Genesis at their absolute peak both creatively and musically. Everyone is in superb form throughout; it is truly majestic to behold and listen to these utterly timeless songs. Simply put this album has some absolutely gorgeous musical compositions and hugely memorable moments, both vocally and instrumentally, throughout the entire running. The mood shifts around from song to song, from the upbeat opener 'Dancing With The Moonlit Knight' through to the reflective 'Firth Of Fifth' and onto the melancholic 'The Cinema Show'. Over the fifty minute running you are taken through an emotional journey.

Everyone is given plenty of room to shine on this record. Peter Gabriel leaves enough space for everyone to play their part, something which was sorely missing on their follow-up. Here we find Peter Gabriel in phenomenal form, perhaps the finest vocals he has ever laid down. Steve Hackett delights us with his beautiful and soaring guitar lines. Tony Banks is perfect in here, restrained when needed and bombastic at the right moments. Mike Rutherford and Phil Collins are equally important to this music, driving the songs forward with powerful bass and drums. I've often thought Phil Collins doesn't get the respect he deserves in regards to his drumming capabilities. Sure he may have divided opinion when he stepped up to replace Gabriel at the microphone, but behind the drum-kit he is an absolute powerhouse and so creative.

I consider 'Selling England By The Pound' to have the two greatest Genesis songs ever written, 'Firth Of Fifth' and 'The Cinema Show' (with the third being the legendary 'Suppers Ready' from 'Foxtrot'). With all that said there is no other rating possible other than 5-stars. A perfect album for any lover of music, progressive or otherwise! This is an absolute essential album that deserves a place in any music collection.

AndyJ | 5/5 |


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