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WHEN IN ROME

Genesis

Symphonic Prog


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5 stars I assigned the 5 Star rating before starting this review. A message appears telling me to practically think about what im giving it. Im pretty sure when something is a 10 or a 5 star or an A+ or whatever you want to call it.

Im a big Peter Gabriel Era Genesis Fan, im also a fan of the Pop Genesis era. Of course they are two completly different bands, i think of them as two seperate entities. When i heard they were thinking of a reunion i was rooting for the Gabriel - Hatchet lineup, but of course, we all know that didn't happen (it's still open i hear), so the second best thing happend, a simple reunion of the 5 men group that made the band a pop 80's signature band.

I can tell you that the concert was far beyond what i expected. They played some songs from the past, and their top singles. To my surprise, the more enjoyable songs from their set list where from the Collins era: No son of Mine, Home by the sea and Domino come to mind. It's obvious that they would sound better, knowing that they were made for him to sing them. Ripples was a nicely done song, that also sounded very good.

One song in particular that caught my attention was I Know What i Like. I thought he sang it even better than Peter did, a lot more emotional, loved it. Of course, In the Cage sounds awfull with him in the lyrics, not to mention Carpet Crawlers UGGHHH! Totally ruins the song. Firth of fifth is another of the old songs that i didn't like that much. Daryl Stuermer totally destroys the beautiful solo made original by mr Steve Hackett. But hey, that's why we want him there so much. If we want those songs to sound as good as they are, we need Peter and Steve there. But hey! I wasn't that surprised by this. I expected it. Cinema Show's exerpt sounded brilliant, even though its altered.

Now, knowing all this, i expected a great Collins, Rutherford, Banks generation DVD replication of the live concert i attended. And i guess i got more than that. Let's start with the documentary. It's the typical behind the scenes documentary featuring some of the highlights of the back stage pre production experience. What i liked the most, is seeing this in a raw way. It's almost (not that much) like watching Metallica's Some Kind of Monster documentary, where they just let it all go. Of course, tony, phill and mike aren't laying the leather on each other, but you can see the frustrations and all the preasure a tour like this brings. it was pretty interesting in many ways seeing the rehersal for the stage theatrics, which they have been known for, and actually learning how the choose the songs and the actual stage design.

In the end, the qualityt of the picture, sound, songs, performance, packaging and extras, make this an essential in the collection of any Genesis fan, there is even some footage of some Lamb Tour Gabriel singing the cage. So, it has some hidden gems in it too. Well worth the price of admission.

9.5 out of 10

Report this review (#173758)
Posted Thursday, June 12, 2008 | Review Permalink
5 stars Wow! That is all I can say. This is an absolute essential for Genesis fans. The documentary on the third disk is worth the price alone. It is about 2 hours going from the first rehearsals in New York in October 2006 up to the first show in summer 2007. Was very interesting to see the band work together and have FUN! The insight into the mammoth task of getting the stage and visuals all correct was unreal, it is hard work and obviously time consuming. So many people work to make that show great, it is a real treat to see everything broken down and explained. Then the section about the shows in the terrible rain was quite scary, the lightning threatening to stop the show! All good stuff to watch.

Then if that is not enough, EACH song has its own extras on the two show disks, it amazing to see how they alter the songs to cater for the depleted range of Phil's voice and how easy they deal with it. Its weird to think that it seems most of the songs were played in completely different keys on the tour, compared to the originals. The behind the scenes sections also clearly show that Tony Banks is the real center of the band, he seems to know the songs WAY better than everyone else and steers the others in the right direction.

As for the actual show, jeez, 500,000 people, that is a lot for one show. The crowd just looks insanely huge! As to be expected the visuals and sound are spot on and the song selection (which we all know) is varied enough through all the band's periods that it works very well. My only MINOR complaint is that the large visuals are favored in place of close of the guys playing solos. This is very minor though.

Great show, great extras, great package, great DVD set. 5 stars easily.

Report this review (#173884)
Posted Saturday, June 14, 2008 | Review Permalink
5 stars I would give five stars for the documentary by itself. Add a another five star concert to the mix and this DVD is bordering on something really special. The Come Rain or Shine documentary gives every detail that someone could hope to know and more. From the personal end of the band members and how they came back to the technical end of the stage design, visual effects, and finding the right stools for Phil and Chester in the duet; everything is shown. A most fascinating part of it is the rehearsals that are depicted. At first Phil had such a hard time on drums and this was evident on the Rock Honors when he was playing watered down parts on Los Endos. I was proud of Phil because you can tell that he worked so hard to get back to where he once was. I saw them in Boston on the US leg and he and all of them were phenomenal. You can see his struggles on the DVD, though, when he throws he sticks down in anger after failing at Duke's Travels' drum beat. Granted, the bass drum seems hard, but Phil would normally have no problem. My favorite part of the DVD is the revealing of Tony's personality. He is always so solemn, even on other documentaries, but this time, he is cracking jokes and having a lot of fun.

As far as the concert goes, it must have been their best set list since the early eighties. Some of the songs were tuned down, as others have or will point out. That doesn't bother me that much, however. Others have sworn by playing in authentic keys and claiming to have perfect pitch. Whatever. To me, it is not that difficult to adjust to a different key. There are some musical mistakes, particularly the drum fill in Firth of Fifth, but it is a hard one and they adjusted quickly. I am not sure who it was, but it appears to be Phil as his right hand looks a bit strange when it happens. Overall, I find it amazing though. Ripples, Carpet Crawlers, Los Endos (w/ the duet), and Home by the Sea are the highlights for me. Everything is astounding. I mean, many of these songs are just better live. No Son of Mine and Domino are much better than their studio conterparts. The medleys were great too. Throwing Duke's Travels in there was a strong addition. This has to be one of their best releases out of everything in their catalog. If not for the concert, then get it for the documentary because that was the most interesting thing I have seen on them. Five stars without question.

Report this review (#176839)
Posted Monday, July 14, 2008 | Review Permalink
Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Disappointed with the audio version "Live Over Europe" I did not plan to buy the DVD version titled "When In Rome". But a friend of mine made an excellent review at i-Rock! mailing list that made me provoked to by the DVD. The set came to my address more than a week ago and I only had a chance to watch this DVD last night. It's a wonderfully packaged DVD set containing three DVDs plus colourful booklet. The emotion being die hard fans of Genesis (especially during Hackett era ) raised immediately with all geat memories about the old days of the band.

At first glance I was so impressed with huge crowd to see the show in front of gigantic and great stage. It's a great viewing, really. The band starts wonderfully with "Dukes Intro" which basically "Behind The Lines" in instrumental fashion. It's an excellent performance as I can see Phil Collins drumming is still powerful especially combined with Chester Thompson. When Phil starts with his vocal on "Turn It On Again" I can hear the quality of his voice that has dropped significantly so that he can not spell out the lyrics expressively. I do not think the performance of the band is excellent because the notes have been toned down to suit Phil's vocal capability.

"Land Of Confusion" is a good track and I press the "extra" button to see how the band and producer discusses about the plan for the concert. It's great knowing behind the scene of the show that can be accessed at the opening of each track in the DVD. "In The Cage Medley: In The Cage, Cinema Show, Dukes Travels" is an excellent show cast that I do enjoy especially on the music and the gigantic screen at background that shows an animation of a man walking and then running. It's really a well planned show. I enjoy the "Cinema Show" part. This time the medley includes Dukes Travel at the ending part plus Darryl Stuermer performs the melody of Guide Vocal. I do enjoy with the guitar performance performed by Daryl, it's so stunning.

Even though only the interlude part of "Firth of Fifth" is played but I do enjoy with the music because it includes double drummers and great guitar solo by Stuermer. Oh, I remember the old days singing this song. Really good!

The next attraction point is when I see the extra part of Mama where the band discusses with the producer on how best they will do with lighting and stage decoration when Mama is performed. And also this is the first time I see "Ripples" being played live in its entirety. It's great! "Conversations With 2 Stools" is also a great viewing pleasure as the two drummers play beautifully.

Overall, this is an excellent DVD package from a legendary band. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW (i-Rock! Music Community)

Report this review (#176951)
Posted Wednesday, July 16, 2008 | Review Permalink
5 stars Ordered the DVD and received it 3 days ago (exactly one year after the show!!!). Dont know if it is because I am one of the 500000 people who attended the show, but the feelings which watching the DVD I experienced, are absolutely fantastic.. I can live again one memorable hot summer roman night, with our beautiful historical temples, lit up by an incredible set of articifial lights, fantastically mixed with music . I can even breathe again the dust which was generated by the presence of so many people. For who has lived the show live watching again the multitude of people (you can barely see the end of the crowded area) is like be there again. Dont want to make another review of the show which has been absolutely fantastic. All I can say, for those who were there, you Must buy this DVD as a testimonial, and for those who were not there, you must buy it because I believe it is one of the best DVDs of Genesis! Masterpiece!
Report this review (#177070)
Posted Thursday, July 17, 2008 | Review Permalink
Guillermo
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars "Sail away, away ...Ripples never come back..." Goodbye, Genesis.

I had mixed feelings when Genesis announced their 2007 tour in late 2006 and I read that their reunion was without Peter Gabriel and Steve Hackettt, and I even became more disappointed when they announced the probable set-list to be played during the tour, with most of the songs taken from their most pop albums and with very few of their songs from the seventies. Another disappointment for me was that they were not going to visit my country to play here. So, despite liking some of the music they recorded as a trio, I really expected some innovations, like playing songs that they had a long time of not playing them. So, when this DVD and the CD set from the same tour was released, I wasn`t very interested in buying them. But mainly the inclusion of "Ripples" in the track list finally conviced me to buy this DVD.

Before I write about each song included in this package, I have to say that I finally know now why they had some reservations to do a reunion tour, and why Phil Collins didn`t want to sing and why he wanted the reunion of their most famous line-up with Gabriel and Hackett. I think that there were several things to take in consideration before deciding to go on tour as a trio too, because Gabriel declined the initial invitation to re-join the band, and Hackett did the same. Among these problems there were:

1. Phil Collins` hearing problems, a thing that kept him away from long tours. It seems that fortunately he has recovered his health, but it seems that he only could do short tours, I think.

2. His voice has changed a lot since 1987. These is evident because since his last tour with Genesis in 1992 several songs had to be played in lower keys because he couldn`t reach some high notes. The same happened for their 2007 tour, with most songs played in lower keys and some of them in even more lower keys than in 1992. This also happened when Genesis in their 19989 tour with Ray Wilson, but I think that the songs from Genesis sound better with Collins as lead singer . Wilson tended to try to imitate Collins but the songs really sounded very different, like played by a Genesis` Tribute band, I think. So maybe Banks and Rutherford were really expecting Collins` return to the band, at least for a last tour as a trio.

So, with taking these things in account, Genesis planned their 2007 tour with Chester Thompson and Daryl Stuermer again in the line-up. Both musicians are still playing very good their respective instruments. All the musicinas obviously look older. But I think that Collins really looks older than Rutherford and Banks (but he is a year younger than them), and I think that his drums playing is not the same as it was years before. He still plays very good, but maybe more relaxed, matured, maybe not wanting to damage his hearing with a lot of volume from his drums. Rutherford again used a double-necked 12 string guitar-bass, a thing that he did for the last time during Genesis ` 1983-84 tour. Banks plays some new keyboards, and I think that some of the sounds are not as good for my taste as the sound of his old keyboards. Anyway, he had to use the best technology in keyboards, he had to update them.

The stage design had some similarities to the stage design they used in 1992, but they also updated it with the most recent visual and sound technology available in 2007. They still used some visual things in the screen that they also used in 1992, but the majority of the visual effects and images were new.

The quality of this DVD in sound and picture is very good. This is maybe their best concert DVD in respect of sound and picture quality. It was really prepared with a lot of care, I think. The same happened with the time they took to rehearse the songs and to prepare all the details of the stage and visual designs, lights, sound, etc. In fact, at the end of the concert, in the Final Credits, a long list of personnel is credited for a lot of hard work, I think. The inclusion of the "Extras" show how hard they worked to prepare a very professional tour in every aspect. Maybe for some people these "extras" are boring, but for me they are very interesting because they show the hard work before doing a tour. They also show, sometimes with a lot of humour, the interactions among the musicians during the reharsals, the choice of songs to be played, and also they show a bit Collins` honest considerations about how his voice has changed. They also show how the band discussed the changes in keys to allow Collins to sing in a comfortable way. I have to say that it takes some time to like these changes in keys, because at the first listening some of them sound a bit strange, after hearing the original versions in other keys for years.

Now, song by song:

1. "Duke`s Intro": they started the concert with an instrumental medley combination of the instrumental part of "Behind the lines" and "some parts from "Duke`s Travels" from their "Duke" album. Being an instrumental medley they played it without key variations. 2. "Turn it on Again", played with change in key. 3. "No Son of Mine": played with change of key. 4. "Land of Confusion": played with change of key. 5. "In the Cage": played with change of key. 6. Medley of "Cinema Show" / "Duke`s Travels": being an instrumental medley it was played in the original keys. 7. "Afterglow": change of key, again. The keyboards sound particularly different in this song in comparison to the original studio version. 8. "Hold On my Heart": with change of key, too, 9. "Home by the Sea": with change of key too, except in the isntrumental section of "Second Home by the Sea" which was played with the original key. This song has been included in every concert video they have released since the "Mama Tour". This song and "Mama" taken from their 1983 album are not among my favourites, so...I could have prefered them to be replaced in the set list with some of their songs from the seventies. 10. "Follow You, Follow Me": a very good song from 1978, this time with Collins singing and playing the drums at the same time. In the "Extras" section about this song, Rutherford suggests Collins to do it because he liked more his drums playing style in this song in particular in comparison to Thompson`s.I think that they didn`t change the key in this song. 11. The last song leads the band into the instrumental part from "Firth of Fifth" on which Stuermer plays the guitar solo (without changing the key), and this is followed by "I Know What I like", played in a different key, I think. It also includes Collins` famous tambourine routine. 12. "Mama": also played in a different key and with Collins not singing the last verse of the song. He didn`t sing the same verse in their 1986-87 tour. 13. "Ripples": played with a different key and with an abridged instrumental section. Anyway, this song is so good (one of my favourites) that it alone justifies the buying of this DVD package in my case. Collins sang with feeling. Great performance by all the musicians. 14. "Throwing it all away": with changes of key, I think, but I`m not sure. 15. "Domino": played in a different key, too, with innovations in the visual and light elements . Very good performance. Thompson particularly shines in this song with his drums playing. 16. "Conversations with two stools": Collins` and Thompson`s solos, first played on stools (very well too) and later on drums in a drum duet. This leads the band to: 17. "Los Endos": a good version but with Collins playing less energetic drums than in other live versions . Anyway, it is a very good instrumental song played in the original key. 18. "Tonight, Tonight, Tonight": in another key, again. They only played an abridged version like they did in 1992. 19. "Invisible Touch": with changes on key, again. It is maybe their best pop song from the eighties. 20. "I Can`t Dance": with changes of key, again. 21. "The Carpet Crawlers": again in another key. Before this last song is played, Collins explains to the audience (he almost always speaks in Italian to them reading in some papers) that Genesis loves Italy due to their support. I think that this concert was recorded and released on DVD to aknowledge the support the band received from Italy in their early days, because their first albums had more success in Italy than in their own country and others. A very good gesture by Collins and the band. 22. The "Final Credits" section has, significantly, I think, "Fading Lights" playing in the audio. I consider this song as their "Swan Song" from their "We Can`t Dance" album, their last with Collins, from 1991. I think that this is a message for the fans, like saying to them "This was our last tour. Goodbye", because the lyrics of this song say goodbye in meaning, to the passing of time, like "Ripples".

Another good thing about this DVD is that being filmed and recorded in Rome, it really allows to the Fans to see a different audience, because most of their previous concert videos were filmed and recorded in England. I don`t have nothing against the English audiences, but audiences around the world interact in a different way with the bands, and this allowed me to see how the Italian audience interacted with the band, and also the cameras focus more than in other concert videos in the audience`s reactions, and I also could see that the cameras caught the images of some beautiful Italian girls. I also could see in the audience the flags of several countries, among them the flag of my country.

This is a very good concert DVD package. I don`t give to it a five star rating because some of the songs are not among my favourites. But I`m not disappointed after buying it. Another good thing is the inclusion of subtitles in Spanish and in other languages.

Report this review (#184780)
Posted Sunday, October 5, 2008 | Review Permalink
AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
5 stars A beautifully fimed, well-crafted look inside the world of Genesis.

Every track on this incredible live experience is masterfully produced, editing is superb and the sound quality par excellence.

Phil Collins gets the audience clapping and singing from the get go and they are observedly having the time of their lives. Even songs that I usually can't stand such as Hold On My Heart, are so well performed that it is inspiring. Tony Banks is absolutely superb and drives every track with his scintillating keyboard work. The drumming is precise and bass and guitar flow evenly throughout.

The highlights on CD1 are the excellent Duke's Intro, Turn It On Again, In The Cage Medley: In The Cage, Cinema Show, Dukes Travels, Home By The Sea, Firth Of Fifth, I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe). Each are masterpieces in their own right on the studio albums but the live treatment is second to none. It was so blissful to hear new versions of Firth of Fifth, and Cage. The screen in the background is artistically innovative ranging from beautiful light patterns to actual images, notably the running man in the Cage. A delight it is too to be able to see into the behind of the scenes work that went in to this concert with the special features.

CD2 begins with the wonderful Mama and Ripples. But the highlight is the lengthy, awesome Domino. The screen work is incredible portraying dominoes falling. An effort should be put into checking out the actual making of this clip and how the button pusher suffered a heart attack almost as the screen was not operating properly.

I did not like the pretentious Conversations With 2 Stools - the effort they put into getting the stools though is hilarious - but what a waste of time. No wonder Rutherford yawns while they are rehearsing this drivel.

Los Endos is as pleasant as ever but they did not perform Dance on A Volcano. Also I wished they had tackled the momentous Suppers Ready. But I guess you can't have everything. The concert ends with the magnificent Carpet Crawlers and the crowd love it and sing every word. What a concert. This is worth at least 4 stars but my 5 star rating is due to the extra DVD documentary.

As far as a fly-on-the-wall doco goes, this is about as good as it gets. We enter a world of decisions, concert schedules, stress, and pure energy as the band prepare to assault the world with their tour. It is a brilliant doco full of laughs and traumatic moments, particularly the things that go wrong, and those people who mean well but are off the scale when it comes to presenting their clips and the stage design. But Genesis are unswerving and bloody minded enough to let the promoters know exactly what they want and they get it. Music over imagery is the key. If its not Genesis they dont want it no matter how cool the graphics are. It is inspiring to see how the band work so well together and how much they care about their audience and about remaining true to their origins.

This is one of the best DVD live packages you will ever see!

Report this review (#185001)
Posted Wednesday, October 8, 2008 | Review Permalink
Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Prog Specialist
2 stars Call me when Gabriel and Hackett are back

Great production, great sound, great video, but there's is a terrible problem....THE MUSIC, most of it is from the infamous three men era and the few songs performed from Gabriel era, are not remotely like the original for two main causes.

1.- The voice of Phil Collins is something I simply cant stand, flat unidimensional, boring, makes every song tedious.

2.- The lack of Steve Hackett is the main cause, I know Daryl Stuermer is an excellent JAZZ musician and admire his work with George Duke and Jean-Luc Ponty, but I can't imagine Firth of Fifth (for example), with anybody playing the guitar except good old Steve.

It's also evident that the songs have to be played in lower key because Phil Collins voice is not the same as some years ago, this is more than obvious in tracks like Land of Confusion and Turn it on Again.

The case is even worst in Mama a terrible song (IMO of course) that already was awful, now with this change of keys, looses the little interest I had for it, it's clear that the best days of Collins as a vocalist are behind him.

I believed this was an unnecessary tour, and of course this is an unnecessary DVD, except for fans of the POP years, but I'm not one of them.

Now, being absolutely honest, the In the Cage Medley touched some fibers of my soul, but as always I hate to see this great tracks reduced to parts of a medley while some less than mediocre songs are played completely, as throwing some scraps to the original and long time fan, in this occasion even worst, because of Duke's Travel....For God's sake, why in hell must Duke Travels be played in a Gabriel era medley? They give us very few songs, the best ones lumped in a medley, why must the effect be destroyed by a three men era poppy track that doesn't belong there?

If we were to rate production, image and technical aspects, I would give four, maybe five stars, but for the music and performance I won't give more than one star, so making my own average (placing more value in the music, because what's the point of interviews and extras if you -as me- can't stand most of the music?)

So I will go with two stars for the Medley.

My opinion hasn't changed, I don't care for any reunion that doesn't include Gabriel, Hackett and/or Phillips.

Report this review (#190188)
Posted Saturday, November 22, 2008 | Review Permalink
progaardvark
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I was really impressed with this latest 3-DVD set released in 2007 and featuring their last show in Rome during the European leg of the Turn It On Again Tour. Originally the group had tried to organize a live performance of The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway reuniting Genesis with Peter Gabriel and Steve Hackett, but both backed out. So the threesome of Collins, Banks, and Rutherford decided to put together a short tour they referred to as "a selection of shows." Although many, including myself, would have loved to see a Gabriel-led Genesis come back, even briefly, it was not so. Still, any reunion, including the Collins-led form, is better than nothing.

Not having followed the tour as I was interested in other things at the time, I stumbled upon this DVD some time ago and had wondered if it was worth my time. I was intrigued by the set list because it wasn't completely filled with stuff from their last two Collins-era albums. True, it had some, but I think this set list really balanced the old with the new nicely to satisfy both camps of fans Genesis had, pop and prog.

One thing you may notice (perhaps not at first, but with future listens) is that many of the songs are played in lower keys. This is loosely documented in the extras and the documentary disc Come Rain or Shine when it becomes quite clear that Collins can no longer hit the high notes, a common problem with vocalists as they get older. In a way it was kind of sad to see Collins struggling with these and in the end it influenced what Genesis would include in the set list. Even played at lower keys, the songs are still well performed and I personally did not find it distracting.

For a bunch of 50+ year-old musicians, Genesis can certainly pull off some stunning performances. Collins and his cohort Chester Thompson can still drum like they were in their 30s. And even Daryl Stuermer, better known for his jazz work, can pull off an exhilarating and respectful Steve Hackett solo, particularly the one he performs on the Firth of Fifth excerpt. Banks is still the keyboard maestro of his earlier years, although some of the Cinema Show solos sound like they're off tone (he should've stuck with the Moog!). Instead of his former mountain of keyboards, he only uses three now (the wonders of technology I presume).

The In the Cage/Afterglow medley is amazing, as is the performances of Home by the Sea, I Know What I Like, Ripples, Domino, Los Endos, and the Carpet Crawlers. Collins and Thompson perform a stunning duet that starts with a set of stools (the ones you sit on!) that leads into a stunning performance of Los Endos.

Like any progger, I could do without some of the selections, like Hold on my Heart, Throwing it all Away, Invisible Touch, and I Can't Dance. Even so, they performed these wonderfully, though I will often skip them. And this is the reason this DVD set will never get a masterpiece rating from me.

Some killer performances, a remarkable (yet strange) stage with some cool video effects, and unbelievably entertaining audience interaction. The Come Rain or Shine documentary is very well done, showing just how terribly English these fellows are. Clearly a must-have for Genesis fans and easily worth a four star rating.

Report this review (#224221)
Posted Thursday, July 2, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars The latest, and probably the last tour Genesis did couple of years ago, was a great opportunity for a younger generation (myself included) to see some of the classic songs performed alive. The setlist was a nice overview of the band's history, even though the 80's stuff was in the majority. When In Rome was shot on that tour, and sums it up nicely. But I feel that it doesn't serve much other than a documentary purpose, since I'm more into the 70's material. There has been released some good live recordings from the earlier period (like London 1980), a time when the band was doing much more energetic and intense performances, so I would turn on those instead. I think, though, that this is surely enjoyable and more balanced than, for example the Wembley-live, but I still find myself skipping most of the hit songs here (already the third track, No Son Of Mine, is totally unlistenable to me). So, I'm not sure if this one was a necessary release at all. If I should pick one really meaningful moment from here, it would be In The Cage-medley which is, I have to say, quite amazing.
Report this review (#254030)
Posted Wednesday, December 2, 2009 | Review Permalink
Matti
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars It's kinda funny how strong emotions a GENESIS reunion can raise among fans. Or rather, the idea of a reunion in which also the names Hackett and Gabriel pop up - and which is why their return as the core trio (plus long-time live members Stuermer and Thompson) can only be a minor prize, no matter how long they were inactive during all these years. I can understand the feeling, but I myself can easily enjoy their performance without thinking of what it isn't.

Are they really two decades older than at the time of their last studio album We Can't Dance? Well, some have mentioned the restrictions in Phil Collins' voice, but I'd say you can hardly tell the difference. They sound quite the same as before. In their concert appearance not much of anything has changed. Apart from Collins' showman manners the band likes to hide under the huge technical stage constructions, as they did before. The visual side doesn't steal the show however, instead it could have been more colourful. I wasn't so impressed by the cold digital graphics. At times they are quite blurry (e.g. poolside growth during 'Ripples' or ghostly figures of 'Home By The Sea'), and the running figures ('In The Cage') or city views ('Domino') taste somehow outdated. And always they are very repetitive. During 'Follow You Follow Me' the canvas shows some old band photos from the seventies and figures of album covers, mainly Duke, as moving colourless line drawings. We are not talking of the kind of sharp screen videos you can see in a Pink Floyd concert.

The programme has a good deal of classic stuff of the seventies, both from Gabriel era and the quartet era. But from later albums the choices have no notable surprises. Again the hit album Invisible Touch (1986) is too dominant, and We Can't Dance is represented by the hits, ignoring the more progressive contents of the album. This orientation into band's more commercial output is sad, much sadder than the absence of former band members. But anyway, as a whole I was quite satisfied, because I wasn't really expecting anything more.

Oh, almost forgot to write about the third disc, the nearly two-hour document about planning the tour. In a word: BORING!!! One hour of it would have been more than enough.

Report this review (#266980)
Posted Friday, February 19, 2010 | Review Permalink
5 stars A great progressive rock entertainment!

This DVD is just stunning. Of course has some weak points but as an average is 5 stars. This are my reasons:

The overall concept of the show is fantastic. Specially the screen and the videos that accompany the tracks. The sound is great. As a DVD has better sound than the CD Live over Europe. The three DVD set is a big reason to bought it. Every song has an attachment in which you can see the band talking or showing moments related with the tracks. The third DVD is almost a movie which will catch you. The image and the overall production is perfect. The set list is really balanced between progressive tracks, pop hits and non prog nor pop. Counting the progressive tracks and what I call modern prog (like Home by the sea and Domino) we have almost 80 min. The pop hits (including No son of mine and Tonight?) is almost 50 min. Apart are Mama and Drum duet.

The tracks

Duke's intro: A great way to start the show. Genesis tries to show that they give much importance to the instrumental sections, and that will be demonstrated along the show. The track is a mix between the Behind the lines intro and Duke`s end.

Turn it on again: Not the best version of this great track. It lacks of some strength, in the Phil's voice and in the rhythm guitar.

No son of mine: Very good version, in the same way than The way we walk. The last part is even better, specially because the Collins vocalization.

Land of confusion: Strong version, in the vein of the other ones before.

In the cage/Cinema Show/Duke's Travels: The absolute highlight of the show. In the cage is good but not better than the predecessors. It's slower than the Three sides live version for example, and Phil's sings it more in the vein of the album version. The screen with the man running is superb. But when you get into Cinema Show, I can feel that is enough to buy the DVD. This version is uncredible. The best version ever of this fantastic track. The drums and the bass are really stunning, but the best thing is the keyboard sound. It's really monstrous and seems to fill everything. Just give me the chills everytime I listen it. Then the instrumental medley gets into an excerpt of Duke's Travels in which the melody line is replaced by a guitar solo. And here Stuermer sounds great. This melody in a guitar solo is really emotional.

Afterglow: Duke's travels flows into Afterglow in a good version of that anthem. It can't reach the Three sides live one, because Phil's voice can't do this anymore, but is good too, especially the full orchestra ending.

Hold on my heart: Why the band included this track in the set list? I don't know. Seems to be that this track has some special feeling for them. Very similar to the other live versions.

Home by the sea: Another highlight. Phil sings in a low key and sounds really great. The screen gives a great accompaniment. The instrumental second home by the sea is stunning.

Follow you follow me: For a first time Phil sings as he plays drums (just like in the video clip) and for the first time too, the track sounds very similar to album version. Good. The screen shows movement of Albert, the beast of A trick of the tail, and father and son of We can't dance.

Firth of fifth: For this time the band plays again only the instrumental section but with a proper intro. Tony plays as speed as always and Daryl shines with a rougher solo than other times. Harder but really good.

I know what I like: A complete version pretty similar than the Seconds Out version. Very well sung by Collins.

Mama: Good but not the best. Especially because Phil can not shout like in the past. He tries to control his voice.

Ripples: Other highlight. They played the complete song with the fantastic instrumental interlude. All sounds great with this magic images on the screen. The version is really good. Better than the one in the Archive 2. At the end Daryl plays a short but excellent guitar solo.

Throwing it all away: Here the people sings with the band. Similar than other versions.

Domino: Another highlight. The band sounds great once more and Phil sings really good. In the first section of The Last Domino Phil is not on the stage and his face appears singing dramatically in the center on the screen surrounded by a vortex.

Conversations with 2 stools: A new version of the drum duet. They start playing over barstools for move themselves to the drums kit after.

Tonight, tonight, tonight/ Invisible touch: Similar than the TWWW versions.

I can't dance: As the one before. The novelty is on the screen.

Carpet crawlers: An outstanding ending of a great show. Phil sings in a low key and gets closer of Peter in the original version. They change the conventional ending to a more pompous one accord to the end of the show.

The movie and the track attachments are great too. There you can see how Tony Banks is the absolute musical leader of the band. He knows all the harmonies, notes and every from each song, and teaches it to the rest. In the movie you can see how Tony and Mike are the basement of the band and how they are in all the details. Phil put all his effort but rests much in Tony and Mike, and as always he brings the humor side. The movie even has some suspense.

A band who plays progressive rock for 500.000 people in the XXI century? Only Genesis can do this. Absolutely recommended.

Report this review (#291138)
Posted Monday, July 19, 2010 | Review Permalink
rdtprog
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Heavy / RPI / Symphonic Prog Team
4 stars This reunion concert was part of a small tour of the legendary band after 15 years of inactivity. The band decided to play in front of some of the biggest crowd in large stadium. A huge stage and impressive light show was added to create the ultimate experience to the audience. The set list was composed with their latest releases and some old favorites; "Carpet Crawlers", "Ripples" and some excerpts of old ones in a medley. While i prefer by far the Genesis era with Peter Gabriel, some songs like "Domino" and "No Son of Mine" are very enjoyable. However i prefer to skip a couple ballads of the Collins era that are more pop than prog to keep the momentum going...

The picture is nice and the 5.1 DTS mix is loud and impressive. Also, the band have made the most interesting documentary of 2 hours in a third DVD, were you see the friendship of each musicians working in studios and preparing for the tour. We see that the band had a word to say in the design of the stage setup.

Report this review (#946307)
Posted Friday, April 19, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars #18 Review

It is time, i'll review the latest concert that Genesis did, can't believe that it has been more than 10 years, i was alive then but still not a fan of the band because i wasn't aware of them, i was aware of bands like Iron Maiden and Depeche Mode, at the time i was learning about Phil Collins and i wasn't that much into his music (still not), it's amazing that now i think that he has been one of the biggest musicians ever, not because of his solo work, but because of everything else.

In a spawn of 10 years everything can happen, they have been talking a lot lately, mainly Steve Hackett and Tony Banks, in late 2016 was Phil Collins and Mike Rutherford who talked a lot about the band, i have even seen Anthony Philips talking about the memories with them. Back in 2006, the band was talking about a reunion with the original "5" line-up, Peter Gabriel was busy at the time and Steve Hackett couldn't see the point of him in there without PG so the reunited line-up was the same since 1978 to 1992 for live performances.

As for the song selection, i really like what they chose here: - 3 from Selling England by the Pound (+ The Cinema Show [from the Cage Medley], Firth of Fifth + I Know what I Like) - 2 from The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway (In the Cage+ [from the Cage Medley], Carpet Crawlers) - 2 from A Trick of the Tail (Ripples, Los Endos) - 1 from Wind and Wuthering (+ Afterglow [from the Cage Medley]) - 1 from And then there where three... (Follow You Follow Me) - 3 from Duke (Duke's Intro + Turn it on Again, + Duke's Travels [from the Cage Medley]) - 2 from Genesis (or Shapes, or Mama) (Home by the Sea + Second Home by the Sea, Mama) - 4 from Invisible Touch (Land of Confusion, Throwing it all Away, Domino, Tonight, Tonight + Invisible Touch) - 3 from We Can't Dance (No Son of Mine, Hold it on my Heart, I Can't Dance)

Almost every song is "prog", there's no Abacab (wich makes it really good), but there is a lack of songs from Foxtrot or Nursery Crime (it's almost impossible that they would've included something from Trespass, even more impossible from Calling All Stations and From Genesis to Revelation), they could've done it without the song "I Can't Dance", probably the only song that i completely dislike on this concert, it would be too much to ask for them to dump the song "Invisible Touch" since that's their most known song. At the end of the concert, the credits play "Fading Lights" from the album We Can't Dance (a really good swang song), i love that song but it wasn't performed by them in the concert, just a little shoutouts to that song.

"Low"lights (Actually not that bad) - Tony Banks not using Melotron samples, not that big of a deal actually, but it could've made the concert better. - Songs at a lower key because of Phil's singing, it's hard to listen at first but then it's not that big of a deal. - Darril Struermer solo on Firth of Fifth, he was good on everything else, and even amazing on "In the Cage", why can't he play the solo like it was meant to be? He doesn't need to show his talent. - Duke's Travels part where they reduced the piano part to pre-recorded slow piano, if it was going to be pre-recorded, why not make it as close to the original? - I Can't Dance was a really pointless song on this concert.

Highlights : - THAT INTRO, now that's a way to start a concert, the hype, the energy, amazing. - The public chosen for this was perfect, when they shouted "Tony! Tony!" that was really emotional for me for some reason. - The quality of the lights as they always do, but this time the added verticality did a really good job. - The screens on this concert were amazing, probably the best. - That poster that appears in one frame that says "Genesis, Please come to Chile", they have never come to where i live, and i missed Steve Hackett's Genesis Revisited concert that was held like 2 week ago, i also missed Womad from PG and Phil Collins played here 6 days ago, i just wish that i'm not too late in order to show them my gratitude for all this aweosome music, glad they're all alive. - IN THE BLOODY CAGE MEDLEY with Duke's Travels added almost in the end, for a different variation. Aweosome reaction from the public. - The performance was overall of top quality, there was even a moment where Phil drop his drum stick, and then took another one without losing a single note, this was on The Cinema Show part from the Cage Medley. - Follow You Follow Me played on drums and singed by Phil Collins, while the screen was drawing many parts from the past. - I Know what I Like with many pictures from Genesis past, and Phil doing the tambourine dance. - Ripples made me cry. - That portal in Domino that had Phil Collins head on it, he was singing live in a dark room with a camera, that wasn't necessary, he could've used a video while he rests a little, and also, he did that domino thing with the public. - Conversations with 2 Stools and the entire Los Endos part because they added some drum and guitar notes, the reaction of the public is also priceless. - That fire spectale at the end of Invisible Touch. - Carpet Crawlers and all of the prog songs used, including the credits, thanks for everything, the concert was almost 2 hours and 40 minutes, amazing.

The quality on the packaging is really well done, probably the best done Genesis product that's not a compilation or box-set, this is a really good release.

This is probably my less complete review since i won't be talking about DVD 3, i saw some of it, but i'm reviewing the concert here, and i think that this concert was a fine last "gift" from them to us. Back in 2012 i discovered this band and fell in love with it, i don't want something from 5 years earlier to be the final thing they ever did together, but it was really well done so if this is it, it could be the best way of the band to say goodbye, and i have to respect that.

This concert has some minor things that i disliked, but they're really minor, the concert is an excellent addition to any prog rock music collection, but for me as a Genesis fan is clearly a "5" (I decided to change at the last minute my score from 4 to "5", it's my review after all).

This is my last Genesis review, i'll update older reviews, starting with the first one "Abacab", the rating won't change and it'd be just an expansion with the B-Sides of the album, and that for every album i reviewed after that, but there'll also be new reviews from a pretty close person to Genesis, in fact, there'll be "5" new reviews for that person, i wonder who will he be?

Report this review (#1907684)
Posted Wednesday, March 21, 2018 | Review Permalink
Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars A last evening with old friends

Sometimes, one has to say farewell to someone or something we love very much.

In the case of Genesis, they thankfully did seize the chance for a proper goodbye. Considering that they haven't been a prolific creative force in many years -- they are more an entertainment enterprise like Pink Floyd and Rolling Stones of later years -- Genesis actually took the time and made the effort to create something much better than I expected, for sure. They planned out this goodbye release as a truly thoughtful hug to their fans, and it turned into something worth owning. And this is coming from someone who generally does not approve of old farts milking a band name -- I'm with Grace Slick on that issue.

Naturally, being the three-piece line-up, the set list was bound to focus on the Collins era primarily. You just have to set aside your desire for some grand 70s reunion and be realistic. These are old men retiring the live Genesis band, and it is going to be something different than what prog fans want, but in this case that isn't necessarily bad. This concert and especially this documentary gave me three very enjoyable nights of viewing in my home theater. They allowed the fans to share in their personal goodbyes to each other. We are given more in the way of intimate access with this release than most DVDs by legacy acts.

The nearly two-hour documentary starts from the beginning of rehearsals and gives us a "fly on the wall" view to everything. There are lots of fun surprises, but I'll share just a couple. On the first day Phil arrives, the guys share their "good to see you again" hugs before settling in to listen to some songs. Mike, who likes to joke a lot, asks Tony if it's time to break for lunch before they'd even done an ounce of work. Personalities open up here, which is what makes this package worth it. As the glorious sounds of "Cinema Show" wash over the practice space, we watch the guys faces while listening to Peter sing, and you can see them react to the magic with warmth and melancholy on their faces. You can see them marveling at how good the music still sounds and how long ago it was. It is very interesting and authentically emotional. After they decide to try playing the intro, Mike asks his assistant if he has a 12-string acoustic tuned and ready to go. The assistant affirms that he does. Mike pauses and then says, "Good, give it to Daryl" and they all burst into laughter again.

Stuermer explains how he and Thompson are able to drop right back into the groove because as working musicians, they are practicing every day. For the other guys, it is much harder to pick up where they left off many years ago. They allow us to see them working through that frustration. Sometimes, it's fun and humorous. Other times there are flashes of irritation that bubble up. The same is true for the production team. We expect that a band of this level would have teams of top level pros whipping their sound and stage show into expected form with the wave of a wand. The truth is that it was much more chaotic than you'd think as people tried to learn the songs and technology as the time before the first show was rapidly running out. It appeared that some of the light show timing aspects were barely finalized before the first show curtains went up. I also really enjoyed watching the some of the preparation that Phil and Chester went through as they worked up their playful co-solo.

Another priceless moment shows the three guys about to take the stage to a packed stadium in Europe (Finland, if I recall correctly) as the fans shout with thunderous volume, "Gen -- ee -- sees, Gen -- ee -- sees!!" The guys are in their small huddle below the stage, listening to this chant with amazement and nervous smiles, just about to climb the stairs to the stage. The give each other a final hug for good luck, ready to face a stadium of faces for the first time in 15 years. Suddenly, Phil and Mike decide they need a quick pee before taking the stage, and the look on Tony's face was priceless. Lots of little bits like this really made it fun for me. They then cut to Mike exiting the backstage men's room as he remarks, "All ten drops." Nothing like a little aging rock star prostate humor.

Did I mention there are also two full discs of concert music? I really loved every second of it. People can whine all they like about the two missing gentlemen, but despite the advancing years of the guys, I just loved every second of the show regardless of era. From the exciting introduction to "Afterglow" to Stuermer's massive solo on "Firth" to "Ripples" to "Los Endos," there were nicely performed gems throughout the evening. They struggle a few times, primarily Phil trying to hit certain notes. It would not be unlike watching Gilmour try to take the Floyd on the road again at this late juncture. Sure, he could do it, but it wouldn't be quite the same as the 70s, especially with Roger's croak of a voice. I actually like Phil's performance here and I like his matured voice. His clowning-around persona is toned down quite a bit. He is more serious and determined, no doubt a result of the great challenge, and I find the vocal performances just as pleasing and somehow more heartfelt. And Daryl and Chester are as kickass as ever. The time away hasn't phased them at all.

And then there is Rome! On the final night of the European leg, hundreds of thousands of Italians, all who realize that they were witnessing these friends for the very last time, made for extra passion and emotion. Everyone knows this is it, the last tour. It's a fitting venue choice because the Italians were very accepting and passionate about Genesis in the lean years. Cameras wisely captured people singing along to "Carpet Crawlers" during the final encore, and it really did get me choked up. Frankly, I realized that these people were special to me. Genesis have always been "around" in my youth and now they were saying goodbye. That is something that proved worth taking part in. Seeing people young enough to be the grandchildren of the band crying as they sang along to Carpet Crawlers proved again how special music can be. (Actually, I think that part was Finland, too.) The whole event truly had a lot of love, and I feel sorry for people who can't enjoy this because A) it isn't prog enough, or B) Steve Hackett isn't there.

The Circo Massimo gig is the one featured in full, on a beautiful night that really set off the huge screen and stage ambiance. The stage itself just looked amazing in the Rome night. The official crowd estimate for that night was 500,000, making it the biggest gig Genesis ever did.

Phil recalled, "They say there were 500,000 at the concert, but to honest, if you were in Rome that night, you were there... you had no choice. I've got a friend who works in The Vatican - which is a mile or so away across the river - and he told me that it was pretty loud even over there and that everyone opened their windows to let the music in."

Not often is a big stadium show from a legacy act, 40 years past their prime, going to affect me the way this one did. It would seem that, for me, they simply cared enough about the final product to succeed here. This is not treated as a throwaway or a product obligation, but as something that should matter. It feels to me like they wanted this document to be something people would want to return to, and I would definitely watch it again with great joy.

"It was a great opportunity. I think it's nice to get out there and, sort of knowing it is probably the last time, have a little bit of fun with that closure. Each night was kind of an emotional experience because you were playing a place you had played many times over the years and tonight you were saying thanks to everybody for the last 30 years of coming to see us. It's kind of nice way to say goodbye, really." -Collins

I might take this moment to also recommend both Collins and Rutherford's recent bios. Phil's book documents the absolute freefall of his health in the years following this DVD, while Mike's book was a fascinating look at both family and life in Genesis going all the way back to the very start. Both books are also chock full of entertaining, humorous, and heartfelt stories, with relatively little pretentiousness.

So, if you are able, set aside your cynicism and your expectations for a few evenings to take in this last call with old friends. I'm so glad that I did. I loved it.

Addio miei vecchi amici.

Report this review (#1911233)
Posted Sunday, April 1, 2018 | Review Permalink

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