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Genesis - Genesis Live CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.98 | 867 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Gustavo Froes
5 stars This album's cover immediately drawed my attention at the record store.I had to listen to it right away.And so as the sleeve of an old vinil copy was opened,I was mind-blowed by the sinister story Peter wrote for this live album.To read it while hearing the opening song's mellotron introduction is something I'll never forget.Although I had some familiarity with the band already,this is the album that made me fall in love with Genesis.And so I find myself listening to it very oftenly nowadays.

But enough of my own history with the album.I don't think this live recording can be classified as a sum up' of that glorious early period.Although it's repertorie is consisted by songs from Trespass,Nursery Cryme and Foxtrot,Genesis Live is more fittable as an introduction than as a conclusion,considering the lack of some significant material as Supper's Ready,Fountain of Salmacis and Can-Utility and the Coastliners,all of which should be present in a true stage rendition of the band's work(as indeed happened in ELP's Welcome Back.... and Yes' Yessongs).Some remarkable enhancements over the original studio versions,however,must be mentioned.

The most important of all is the opening track,Watcher of the Skies,which is far superior to the Foxtrot version.There,it always sounded a bit silly to my ears,specially in the way Peter Gabriel sang the airy-fairy (and dare I say,dull) lyrics.Here,it is nothing short of a masterpiece(pay attention to Mike Rutherford's straight bass line).

The Knife is also improved over the studio original,mainly beacuse of Phil Collins' driving percussion,obivously not present in Trespass.This song suffered several changes compared to the original version in order to fit in the live set,but even though it is not the ideal closer(as indeed it didn't closed this show),the song's mood grants the album a powerfull climax in it's last minutes.

I don't feel inclined to offer great complains about the sound quality,even though the final mix sometimes gets a bit lost.

As much as I feel inclined to recommend the album as an introduction to the band(and coming to think of it,probably the best place to start),I do miss Peter's stories which usually were told in between the songs and gave the band much of their symbolic charisma.Then again the inner sleeve tale gives a taste of Genesis' theatrical act.Some may claim that the short set leaves you eager for more(unfortunately Supper's Ready was cutted from the final version so that the album could make it to the stores as a single LP),and they're right.It is nothing short of frustrating to here a fading as soon as The Kinfe is concluded,so if you're new to the band you should have in mind that this is but a brief invitation to the Genesis party.I can't take away a star from the final rating because as short as the set of Watcher of the Skies,Get'em Out by Fryday,The Return of the Giant Hogweed,The Musical Box(thanfully this one is included here)and The Knife may be,they're all played very passionately by a band in their prime.

Something curious concerning the '4:30 P.M....' story in the sleeve is that William Friedkin('The Exorcist' director)caught his eyes on it,around the time Genesis were about to record The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway.Fredkin contacted Peter Gabriel for some ideas for a Sci-Fi movie he was gonna produce,and as Peter (as it seems) was immediately delighted with the invitation,the band started to get divided in what about a year later would result in their frontman'a departure.

Though it doesn't offer a complete Genesis banquet,this album captures(in a magical way)the essence of Genesis' early work,months before they achieve worldwide recognition.And a fine introduction it is.

Gustavo Froes | 5/5 |


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