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Genesis - Genesis Live CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.98 | 869 ratings

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3 stars If the definition of three-star rating is as it says (good, but not essential), then this album is the ideal example of such a rating. It is good, but unlike a more engaging live album, most of the songs don't sound to dissimilar to their studio counterparts. I do have a soft spot for this album. My brother taped it for me for a long bus ride and it served not just as my introduction to Genesis but marked the beginning of my love of progressive rock. That being said, I feel this points out this album's truest virtue; it is a great introduction to the Genesis canon. Featuring some of the great Gabriel-era cuts while avoiding 'Supper's Ready', which may be too much for first time listeners, but obviously well worth looking into later. As for the songs presented here, the first three are likeable, serviceable, energetic versions of the studio incarnations but, as I said are neither better, worse or even very different from the originals. Perhaps the only appeal might be the more strongly felt keyboard work of Tony Banks. But on the same token, Hackett's guitar work is relegated to the back, especially on 'Watcher of the Skies', where it sounds like Hackett is still backstage. 'The Musical Box', in addition to being preluded by a bit of whimsy, doesn't get a real facelift per se, but it does "rock" a little bit harder in the middle and the end. The version here I prefer slightly to the original, but isn't essential to those who aren't Genesis Fanatics or those who enjoy the more subtle studio version. The final track, 'The Knife', is the only track from Trespass and, perhaps by virtue of this, is the one which gets the biggest change. And it is certainly a change for the better. Anthony Phillips, though talented, is better represented on the gentle acoustic tracks of Trespass, and not the surging monster that Hackett and co. transform the Knife into here. The Knife is the only cut on this album that I would dub essential. One further note of interest on this recording is the lack of pre-song narration that Gabriel often exhibits in other live recordings and bootlegs. Though I am obviously too young to have been to a show of this era, everyone knows of Gabriel's legendary showmanship and one would've liked to here the interesting little snippets he comes up with, but oh well. Also, I feel this is the album wherein Phil Collins comes into his own as a powerful prog rock drummer.
gunmetalsky | 3/5 |


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