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Genesis - From Genesis to Revelation CD (album) cover

FROM GENESIS TO REVELATION

Genesis

 

Symphonic Prog

2.59 | 806 ratings

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slipperman
Prog Reviewer
2 stars Unlike some other poor Genesis albums (which would come much later), 'From Genesis To Revelation' is less than exemplary due to outside influence. Then pop-mogul Jonathan King not only named the band and got them their record contract, but he had huge influence in shaping this album's arrangements, adding horns and strings to the band's disapproval, as well as snipping their tendency toward longer pieces.

There isn't a lot you'd call real prog here (or real Genesis either!), other than the interesting linking of one song to another by themed musical segues--and the insanely ambitious concept: the history of man's evolution in 12 pop-length songs. 'From Genesis To Revelation' is wrapped in a somewhat ethereal production (maybe "muddy" less kindly describes it), and the band's latent creative abilities are hugely dampened. Little of the forthcoming Genesis sound is heard, Tony Banks hardly audible but for the thin tinkling on what sounds like a child's plastic piano. Mellow acoustic harmonies and melancholy melodies offer a mere glimpse into what would become a large part of the Genesis approach. Peter Gabriel is instantly recognizable. He takes command confidently enough, despite his fairly unobtrusive presence. His voice carries otherwise average songs like "Where The Sour Turns To Sweet" and "Am I Very Wrong?", showing a good degree of maturity and command. When the band gets to flex its muscles a bit and go for heavier textures and relatively ambitious playing--as heard on wonderful songs like "The Serpent", "In The Wilderness" and "The Conqueror"--things reach a sublime level. (An interesting note: the opening segue into "The Serpent" incorporates what seems to be a foreshadowing of "Twilight Alehouse".) Then there's the dull plod of the rest of the album. "Fireside Song" sounds uncomfortably close to Spinal Tap's flower-power parody, and many other moments are mired in hokey brass enhancements. "In Hiding", "In Limbo", "The Silent Sun" and the nauseating boys-choir stylings in "Am I Very Wrong?" are pretty much abysmal. Too bad they didn't replace one of these songs with the hypnotic "Let Us Now Make Love", which found release on the first 'Archives' box set much later.

This album was licensed to the point of ridiculousness by Jonathan King, and goes by other titles like 'In The Beginning', 'The Silent Sun', 'Where The Sour Turns To Sweet', '. And The Word Was', and geez, about 20 others. (Collect 'em all!) It's not a great album by any name, thanks in large part to a (well-meaning) visionary who saw this band's potential but not its purpose. A footnote in the Genesis discography, a mere curiosity dotted by a few worthwhile tunes and a lot of flat-out crap.

slipperman | 2/5 |

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