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GENESIS

Genesis

 

Symphonic Prog

2.71 | 850 ratings

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Tom Ozric
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Genesis Self-Titled - 1983 - artistic or commercial ??? Same as asking the question 'to be or not to be ??' This release isn't half bad, nor is it an exceptional expression of early 80's Progressive music. What our Symphonic friends have displayed here is the fact that they can keep up with the demands of the music bizz and contemporary trends by sacrificing inspiration over aspiration. Collins and Co. seem to be catering for their newly established Pop-Rock fan-base (of which there were many to compliment their sales demographics), rather than pleasing ' ye olde faithfuls' (of which there were few by this stage ... the cash-cow would've turned into a bull....) Sure it's something of a winner on the charts, with mega- hits 'That's All', 'Illegal Alien' and 'Mama', of which only the semi-lengthy 'Mama' has any vague link to their past, with the slow build-up and haunting Keyboard work that is truly (Tony) Banksian. The track is actually a quality piece of music - quite the cut above most radio oriented drek at the time. Collins really puts on a chillingly powerful vocal, some of his best singing ever IMO. 'That's All' is a focused and simple tune, which, at least, features an organ sounding synth solo followed by a guitar solo. Pure Pop, but not a tune one is likely to forget, thanks to the highly melodic and catchy nature of the piece. 'Illegal Alien' has Phil putting on the accent of someone of Mexican decent, quite a daggy idea, to be honest. A slightly ethereal interlude is all the interest the song can muster. Elsewhere, most Proggers respect the 'Home By The Sea' suite, with its instrumental consideration and unusual lyric subject - apparently about ghosts - Collins letting loose on his Electric Drum-Kit, crunching guitars and Fretless Bass from Mike Rutherford, and varied, atmospheric Keys from Banks. A definate high-point of the album. Three 'take-it- or-leave-it' tracks in 'Taking It All Too Hard' (almost M.O.R. Collins solo material), 'Just A Job To Do' (pure commercial Pop music) and Silver Rainbow (a somewhat unusual track which I just don't appreciate) and the album closer 'It's Gonna Get Better', which again puts Banks in the fore-front with his tasteful Keyboard work and features some cleverly arranged rhythms. I must admit that this is one of the first Genesis albums I heard back in '86, courtesy of my sister, and it bought to my attention the existence of their vast back- catalogue, therefore I feel a generous score of 3 is justly deserved, good, but far from an essential purchase....... what ?? ....... of course Nursery Cryme is better !!!
Tom Ozric | 3/5 |

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