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Genesis - Follow You Follow Me CD (album) cover

FOLLOW YOU FOLLOW ME

Genesis

Symphonic Prog


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Guillermo
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars The "...and then there were three..." album was the first album that I bought from Genesis, if I remember well, in April 1979, after reading a review about the album in a Mexican rock magazine, and after listening to the "Nursery Cryme" album earlier in that year. I liked "Nursery Cryme", but at that time I couldn`t find it in the record shops (but I recorded it on a cassette). It was easier to find their latest album in the record shops, because it was released in Mexico, as the magazine said. I still like "...and then there were three.." very much.

Now, about this single, it was strange for me that nobody has written a review about. Well, I know. Many reviewers in Prog Archives don`t like the trio years in Genesis` history, so I`m going to write a review about this single.

"Follow You, Follow Me" is a ballad with Pop arrangements, of course, but it is a very good song. The drums are very interesting, playing a rhythm which is not very common in Prog bands. There are some interesting percussion instruments in the background, sounding to me like a marimba. The guitar riff is played with a sound effect, maybe using a chorus or a flanger, and I thought for years that it was really a keyboard sound until I saw the video clip of this song some years ago. The guitar riff is the main part of the song, as it is played almost the same way in all the parts of the song. The keyboards are simple but good, with an organ playing the chords and a synth playing almost the same melody that the vocals sing. There is a very good synths solo. In general, the song has a very good arrangement despite being mainly a ballad, a Pop ballad. It became the first major hit single for the band in the U.S. and in the U.K. , and it marked the start of the Pop years for the band, but still having some Prog inluences. The Pop influences became the main ingredients from 1981 until their last studio album with Collins, "We Can`t Dance".

Update, 27-June-2014: The mixing of "Follow You, Follow Me" which was used (at least for the U.S version of the single) was different, not only being shorter in lenght, but it also had more presence of the percussion instruments and of the drums, and some parts of the keyboards and of the guitars sound a bit different too.

"Ballad of Big" is a song which has some Prog arrangements, with lyrics about a "Hero of the American West". There is a strong presence of synths and bass pedals in this song. Very good arrangements.

Both songs were composed by Banks, Collins and Rutherford.

Report this review (#303526)
Posted Monday, October 11, 2010 | Review Permalink
Matti
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars (It's peculiar how Genesis albums get hudreds of reviews/ ratings, and singles may have just one review. This is the second one for this single. No, I don't feel too good about writing single reviews, but often I just choose to do so when visting the pages of the top bands - that are usually my personal long-time favourites too...)

So, this song marks a big turn in Genesis career, which surely furiated old fans and won lots of new listeners for the band. Perhaps a whole new generation of them who knew almost nothing of the Gabriel-era. They went quite commercial and catchy (compared to their prog years) with this hit. You know what? I haven't got any bad feelings for this song at all. Even in general, thinking of Genesis' later direction, I do have some respect for them not trying to make the same kind of music as in the seventies. I don't personally much care about their 80's - '90's stuff but it's just fine for me if they reached their popularity peak back then. It doesn't necessarily mean they sold their souls to commerciality. And if Peter Gabriel and Steve Hackett had never left the group, I'm sure we'd have much fewer fine albums to enjoy. Instead we might have a dinosaur who would endlessly milk the old cow.

Oops, I wandered away from this single. 'Follow You Follow Me' is a nice little love song. It has almost nothing to do with prog, unless you count the synth solo to be proggy, or the arrangement/sound which is not quite mainstream pop. It has a joyous atmosphere that makes the listener feeling happy too (unless he only thinks "this is not prog! It's awfully commercial!" ;D) Lyrics are very simple and naiive but full of sympathy.

Flip side includes 'Ballad Of Big', another song from ...And Then There Were Three. I think it's very representative of the album in which the airy keyboards dominate. Quite a proggy arrangement and some mild progness in the song structure, in a relatively straight pop approach. Also its narrative nature is typical for ATTWT (on some fan magazine in '86 or 87 they spoke of the album as a cousin to Nursery Cryme). A Western tale of "Big Jim Coolley", "who died like all good cowboys / with his boots on next to his men". I like it. I like ATTWT in general even if it's a huge let-down as the follower of the superb Wind & Wuthering (but one doesn't HAVE to compare those albums, right?). Nevertheless it's the last enjoyable Genesis album; Duke is good too but with more uninteresting material in it.

Report this review (#661723)
Posted Saturday, March 17, 2012 | Review Permalink
3 stars A single from Genesis released in 1978 with the album AND THEN THERE WERE THREE. "Follow You Follow Me" may just be the first true single this band put out- an actual love song with memorable chorus. Unfortunately, the flip side, "Ballad of Big" is a song I find to be one of the weakest on the album along with "Say It's Alright Joe".It is kinda a tribute to the old west but falls flat and I skip it when listening to AND THEN THERE WERE THREE. So...I give only 2 stars for it, but "Follow You Follow Me" gets 4 so an average of 3 about works here.
Report this review (#749373)
Posted Saturday, May 5, 2012 | Review Permalink

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