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




Symphonic Prog

4.65 | 4667 ratings

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5 stars Their Masterpiece.

No doubt about it, this is their most musical album. The album is brilliant. Genesis had learned from their earlier travails how to stitch together quite different passages, and they apply that perfectly on this album. It flows so beautifully, and although it changes direction and feel very often, those transitions seem totally natural here. Every track works very well. Even the short Phil Collins acoustic number, "More Fool Me", the clear outlier (musically and otherwise) seems to fit naturally into this order. The Selling England theme - a guitar-based theme that first appears on the opener "Dancing with the Moonlit Knight" and closes the album at the end of "Cinema Show/Aisle of Plenty" - seems to hold the album together emotionally and musically. This album contains some of Genesis best compositions, including the aformentioned "Dancing..", the quirky but very musical single "I know What I like", the wonderful "Firth of Fourth" (with lovely flute and then guitar solos), and "The Battle of Epping Forest" which sees Gabriel once again take up a number of different character roles in an English tale of a priest and warring gangs. Those are all amazing, and they showcase each member of Genesis (Tony Banks' wonderful piano solo at the beginning of Firth of Fourth, and brilliant playing in "Battle..", Steve Hackett's awesome fast guitar picking, etc). But the closer goes one step further. Not only is "The Cinema Show" a great song, but this was the tune that cemented the reputation of Phil Collins as a brilliant drummer. That Genesis (and particularly Collins) could play such beautiful music so effortlessly over such complex difficult time signatures (without most lay people ever noticing how complex and difficult they were) instantly woke up any musicians listening to this album. One of the early musical wonders of the world. I could go on here, but I think the other reviewers have probably said everything else there is to say. I give this album 9.7 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which (of course) translates to 5 PA stars. Absolutely essential.

Walkscore | 5/5 |


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