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Genesis Trespass album cover
4.14 | 2606 ratings | 224 reviews | 34% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1970

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Looking for Someone (7:06)
2. White Mountain (6:42)
3. Visions of Angels (6:50)
4. Stagnation (8:48)
5. Dusk (4:13)
6. The Knife (8:56)

Total Time 42:35

Line-up / Musicians

- Peter Gabriel / lead vocals, flute, accordion, tambourine, bass drum
- Anthony Phillips / acoustic 12-string & lead electric guitars, dulcimer, backing vocals
- Anthony Banks / organ, piano, Mellotron, guitar, backing vocals
- Michael Rutherford / bass, nylon & acoustic 12-string guitars, cello, backing vocals
- John Mayhew / drums, percussion, backing vocals

Releases information

ArtWork: Paul Whitehead

LP Charisma - CAS1020 (1970, UK)

CD Charisma ‎- CASCD 1020 (1985, UK)
CD Virgin ‎- CASCDX 1020 (1994, UK) Remastered by Nick Davis, Geoff Callingham and Chris Blair
CD Virgin ‎- GENCDY 1 (2007, Europe) Remastered by Tony Cousins

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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GENESIS Trespass ratings distribution

(2606 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(34%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(46%)
Good, but non-essential (17%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

GENESIS Trespass reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by The Owl
5 stars Definitely NOT to be confused with the happy-slappy Genesis of the 1980's by any means! Somewhere in the English countryside, circa 1970, 5 lads from a prestigious boarding school were hard at work in a small house (courtesy of gracious parents), recovering from wounds (namely having their debut album, From Genesis To Revelation flop and then nearly throwing in the towel altogether)and redoubling their creative efforts.

Armed with a steely resolve, a recently acquired Mellotron, a contract with the fledgling Charisma Records label, a sympathetic producer in John Anthony and ambitious new material, Genesis set its sights on upsetting the apple cart of ordinary music. No longer were they going to be pegged as "Moody Blues wannabes".

What emerged was an important, yet largely unheralded milestone in the development of progressive rock, as we know it. Here, the essential building blocks of the classic Genesis sound were coming to the fore, although they had yet to fully gel and integrate, but you could tell that even greater, more startling things were to come.

"Looking For Someone" leads off with a piercing Gabriel vocal and smoky organ, the protagonist looking for meaning and purpose in a world that doesn't seem to have any. The band charges in with full force, exercising newly found ambition and ability. Gabriel's slightly raspy and soulful singing carries this songs mood so strongly, supported by plaintive guitar statements from Anthony Phillips and frantic propulsion from Banks, Rutherford and drummer John Mayhew (who would be fired after the album's completion).

"White Mountain" switches to fairy tale mode, relating the story of a lone wolf who defied the sacred norms of his society and paid a terrible price for it. All this framed by frantic chase music and the trademark interlocking, chiming 12-string guitar passages that old Genesis fans loved so much. Gabriel also begins to experiment with processing his voice to chilling effect (when he recites the "laws of the brethren") and his unsettling whistling combined with mournful organ towards the end. Definitely not "happy-slappy" bubblegum stuff!!

"Visions of Angels" begins with a deceptively winsome piano figure as it's protagonist struggles with the idea of believing in an all-powerful God or not. "Stagnation" is easily the album's high point. This is the story of a man who decided to spend the rest of his existence comfortably ensconced underground. Gabriel's plaintive vocals here can send chills up your spine, along with those chiming 12-strings and Tony Bank's resourceful use of his new keyboard rig (I especially love that otherworldly organ solo he does in the middle of the tune, coaxing out sounds that were unknown at the time). The song builds to a rousing conclusion, with Gabriel just wearing his anguish on his sleeve.

"Dusk" shows the more folky side of Genesis with Gabriel again grappling with the meaning of life. Here, he also whips out the flute for the first time on record, as well as pronounced background vocals from everyone else, something that later would be discarded.

"The Knife" soon would become a Genesis concert favorite. This story of a revolutionary on a power trip is propelled by some of Gabriel's angriest vocalizing with snarling fuzz bass, frantic guitar and rhythm section to match. This early version feels a bit awkward only because of John Mayhew's rather tentative drumming, but would later just rip to shreds with great confidence, with Phil Collins in the driver's seat.

After this, Ant Phillips would develop acute stagefright and quit the band (replaced by Steve Hackett, who did seem to appropriate elements of Phillips guitar style), and a young unknown bloke by the name of Phil Collins would sit behind the drums and rip it to shreds. Even while flawed in some respects (production-wise and Mayhew's tentative drumming), Tresspass still stands as an essential piece of the Genesis puzzle, and for me personally, a very inspiring one to go back to every so often. Highly recommended for any prog-rock fan who wants to know about the music's history and development.

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars Looking For Someone is one of those typical A Capella intro that The Gabe (Peter ;-) has gotten us used to in later albums. White Mountains, although a little simple in the lyrics dept, is one of those quest themes (ala One For The Vine or A Trick OF The tail) and Visions of Angels is a normal tune (where Anthony has written the text as loving the singer's wife without the knowledge of the singer).

On side 2 Stagnation is a gem only waiting for you to discover how deep it is, and The Knife is their first tour de force, and will quickly become a favourite. It is widely regarded as their first classic, but the whole album is excellent bar Dusk which is slightly sub-par.

But I think that most people forget how instrumental the roles of Rutherford and Phillips on 12-strings were: they paved the way for Hackett and his arpeggios. I think of it this way: Phillips taught what he knew to Rutherford (and a little to Banks) who kept it has they had no guitarist for a few months and as Hackett came in, the bassist passed it on but also kept playing it.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars "Tell me my life is about to begin, tell me that I am a hero"

"Trespass" is regarded by many as Genesis first proper album, most fans choosing to regard their previous Jonathan King produced album as being by a different band.

Despite being spectacularly unsuccessful when it was released, "Trespass" has gone on to become a highly regarded album from the Gabriel era, standing up well alongside subsequent albums such as "Foxtrot" and "Selling England by the pound". It is often forgotten that Hackett and Collins had not joined the band when "Trespass" was recorded, yet tracks like "The knife" represent classic Genesis. "The knife" is a frantic, menacing song, which pounds along like an out of control express train. Peter Gabriel almost stumbles over himself as he delivers the biting lyrics in double quick time. Genesis does prog metal perhaps?!

The album has 6 tracks in total, 3 on each side of the LP. The opening track, "Looking for someone", is an off-speed song, far removed from anything on "From Genesis to Revelation". Apart from "The knife", for me the best are "White mountain" and "Visions of angels". "White mountain" is a soft, folk influenced tale of a rebel wolf who challenges the pack leader. It is wonderfully melodic, with sympathetic acoustic guitar, and choir like vocals to end. "Visions of angels" masks its acidic lyrics with another fine melody, over some excellent piano by Tony Banks. I am by no means an expert on the art of percussion, but on this track the drums dramatically add to the whole ambience of the track.

"Stagnation" is a deceptively soft, ambling track, which is probably the last to reveal its true appeal. I found it took many listens to this piece to appreciate the subtlety of the composition. "Dusk" which follows is a short, lighter track, which retains the quasi (anti?) religious lyrics of "Visions of angels".

A great album end to end, which failed to sell widely when first released, only because it was so far ahead of its time. Highly recommended.

Review by lor68
4 stars The first important step and their true attempt in the field of prog music, whose best performance is represented by the famous track "Knife edge", along with development of the melodies performed at the acoustic guitar by Anthony Phillips...moreover I like to make a couple of special mentions regarding some insteresting tracks such as "White Mountain" - a kind of melodic folk progressive tune - as well as the melodic "Vision of Angels", this latter being enriched with very odd lyrics... not the most mature album by Genesis, but it's an important gem to be collected - almost unplugged all along its duration!

Review by greenback
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars OH WOW! This record is a true improvement compared to the previous one! How can they change so drastically? One will not complain! They changed for the best! Honestly, I find "Trespass" quite better than "Nursery Cryme"! "Trespass" is better made, more consistent, much more catchy and addictive! "Trespass" is among the best Genesis' records, obviously after "Selling England by the pound" and "Foxtrot". The songs are quite elaborated and rhythm changing. There are many subtle, mellow and delicate parts. I like the combination flute-bass-piano-mellow guitar: it is very pleasant to hear. The choir-like mellotron parts are excellent, and Anthony Phillips' guitar is OUTSTANDING, especially the acoustic one. Steve Hackett is not on this record, and Phillips really does a great job! The drums played by Mayhew (not Collins) are not as coarse as on "Nursery Cryme". Rutherford plays very well his elaborated bass. ALL the tracks are at least EXCELLENT! There are no fillers! Banks' keyboards are excellent and efficient, and surprisingly he does not make very complex arrangements. Gabriel's voice is loud, present and moving. Usually, the guitars used are acoustic, except on the track "Knife", where Phillips has an incisive electric hard rock sound: impressive: he has nothing to envy from Steve Hackett! 5 stars is well deserved for this gem!


Review by daveconn
3 stars "Trespass" is the first GENESIS record to merit serious attention, as it marks the beginning of the prog rock music that would evolve into "Nursery Cryme", etc. It's a very different record from their debut, mixing pastoral, acoustic interludes with dramatic, portentous sections now featuring electric guitars, Mellotron/organ, more complex drumming, and shouted vocals. "The Knife" is one of the hardest-rocking songs from their career, and "White Mountain" is another good example of the type of dramatic music the band was trying to make. Despite some dark passages, "Trespass" remains an album tinctured by Anthony PHILLIPS' acoustic guitar and Tony BANKS' organ -- in fact, "Stagnation" would feel at home on any number of PHILLIPS' subsequent solo records.

Producer John Anthony allows the band, which now included drummer John Mayhew, to follow their muse; the result produces some lovely moments, and serves as a clearly audible link to the progressive heights attained later. Don't misunderstand: "Nursery Cryme" and the albums that followed are of a higher calibre, but it's here that the magical elements begin to fall into place.

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars For some people Genesis real history only starts when Hackett and Collins join the band, in other words with "Nursery Cryme", nothing more unfair, there are many reasons why Trespass should be considered Genesis first turning point and an underrated gem.

The evolution that begins with the simple "From Genesis to the Revelation" and ends with the complex "Trespass" is incredible. I believe no other band has made such a radical change in less time, almost as if the Bee Gees had changed into a progressive band after Saturday Night Fever.

Steve Hackett wasn't yet a Genesis member but Anthony Phillips style is so similar that any person who doesn't knows the band's history will never guess there's another guitar player in "Nursery Cryme". I'm sure that if Anthony wouldn't have that stage panic, Hackett never would have been a Genesis member, something very sad of course.

With Mayhew the situation is different, all the band thought that Genesis was getting too big for him, and Collins abilities as drummer are undeniable, but still I believe John did an excellent job in Trespass.

The album's sound is very dark and aggressive, also has that atmospheric sound that will become Genesis trademark and to be honest, one of the main reasons why I'm an early Genesis fan.

Gabriel's vocalist abilities weren't totally developed at this point, but his voice was extremely clear and showed big energy, Banks is outstanding and Mike Rutherford is precise as always.

"The Knife" is of course the best known song from this album and the strongest for most of the fans, but I stay with the haunting and beautiful "White Mountain" an almost forgotten song usually bashed by some critics who don't consider the beautiful keyboards, extreme changes and the dark ending which makes of this song one of my favorites.

A great album that deserves much more credit than it usually receives,I would not be fair if I gave less than 5 stars because Trespass is absolutely transcendental for GENESIS and Prog history, it marks the moment when one of the most important Symphonic bands reached maturity despite the youth of the members.

Review by Proghead
4 stars This album really took me by surprise. I have never heard such a drastic change in sound for a band in a span of one year as GENESIS had. "From Genesis to Revelation" sounds like really bad Muzak to me. But these guys knew right away that they weren't going anywhere sounding like a second-rate MOODY BLUES or BEE GEES, so they decided to get serious. Their time at the notoriously exclusive and snooty Charterhouse school was over, and now was the time to get to business. They got rid of Jonathan King, which was a wise move. A small and up and coming label called Charisma Records showed interest in these guys.

Instead of stomach turning ballads with bad lyrics with trash-can quality sound, they went for extended progressive pieces, and real keyboard sounds (organ, Mellotron, piano). And "Trespass" was the result, and was their first real progressive album, a sound they will improve up while GABRIEL was still in the band. I have to admit that none of the music on the album is bad, while most people consider "The Knife" the most significant piece on the album, I also happen to enjoy "Looking For Someone", "White Mountain" and "Stagnation". I have to admit the music, for the most part seems to be a bit more somber than their following albums, especially on the acoustic number "Dusk". And at this point the band still didn't have a permenant drummer (they already went through John Silver and Chris Stewart, and now it was John Mayhew playing the drums here, but luckily things will quickly change when Phil COLLINS joined in). This is truly the sound of GENESIS going in the right direction, and it's not bad at all, so if you like GABRIEL-led GENESIS, you'll like this album.

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars More revered as an important album now as opposed to when it was originally released. I think the album is so typically progressive that it could not be categorized elsewhere! It just fits the niche perfectly. All tracks are important on this album but highlights would have to be Stagnation, Looking For Someone and the fan's favourite, The Knife.Anthony Phillips departed after Trespass and we all know what an accomplished musician he is. He certainly influenced the earlier sound of Genesis.
Review by Menswear
4 stars Can you believe it's the last Genesis record that I purchased for my collection? I even got a taste of Invisible Touch before this one. I guess I feared a poor album with lame sound and performance. Well, the sound could be better, but the performance is loud and proud. THESE GUYS ARE GOOD. Even compared to todays standards (Stolt, Morse, Echolyn, Anglagard, Dream Theater), the determination to create a world and a sound, providing innovation and irreverence to "easy music", is flagrant.

I said this before, but none of these guys were over 20 when this was written. Trespass is delicate, fragile, romantic, innocent, pastoral and has a graveyard feel to it. I just like the mood of the album. The cover by Whitehead is the icing. Perfect for heavy, cloudy days dreaming you're a young adventurer looking for a quest (or romance, why not?). So mature, yet so young. Once again, moody and somewhat not totally achieved. The "whole" sound is not mastered, Collins subtle drums are missed.

It's actually the beginning of a fantastic journey with Genesis...and this ain't no false start.

Review by Guillermo
4 stars The 12 string guitar sound of GENESIS began, in my opinion, in "From Genesis To Revelation", which, for me, it wasn`t a whole 60s pop album. Their first album also has the seeds of their original style, which developed more in "Trespass". It seems that Charisma Records gave them more confidence and freedom to do what they liked. "Trespass" was a more clear step to Progressive Music. Peter Gabriel`s theatrical vocals started to be present in this album. For me, Peter Gabriel is an actor/singer, and despite he is not one of my favourite musicians (as I prefer Genesis without him, between 1976-82, and sometimes him without Genesis), I respect his talent. "Trespass" has very good songs. There are some things that I don`t like very much. First, I don`t like the drums. John Mayhew, as Banks and Rutherford said in some interviews in the 80s, played the drums as the other members of the band told him. He did a good job, but I prefer Phil Collins.Another thing that I don`t like is the quality of the recording. But Anthony Phillips`influence and importance in GENESIS are clear in his two albums with the band as a composer and as good guitarist. Tony Banks`s style developed a more secure sound, using the mellotron. "Trespass" is a very good album.
Review by Bj-1
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars A giant leap from their poor (at least by prog standards) debut album and into the prog woods they flew, Genesis clearly wanted to improve their direction and did by composing longer and more adventurous tracks in the vein of King Crimson and Van der Graaf Generator, but unfortunately the production values gives much to be desired. The songs are long, melodic and dynamic but not challenging, the real beauty are in the compositions and the whole album have a calm and warm atmosphere before the final onslaught in "The Knife", which quickly became one of the bands live favorites for an audience. Speaking as a drummer I can't really give John Mayhew much credit here but he backs up the songs as he should and he inspired me to learn the songs myself, not much struggling but he's not technically good either, but otherwise there is much fine instrumentation here and that's why the muddy production irks me a bit. This is a very good foreword for what was about to come and have given me many great evenings while relaxing, definitely worthwile for any proghead. Best cuts: 'Looking for Someone', 'Stagnation'.
Review by slipperman
4 stars .And then Genesis got down to business. 'Trespass' is often thought of as their real debut, and why not? Here are 6 lengthy tracks, flowing with melancholy, dynamics and ambition, a sense of discovery pervading all. They seem to have taken advantage of their freedom from overbearing pop moguls and produced the first in a long line of signature Genesis epics.

"Looking For Someone" is the link from the band's early influences to the maze-like arrangements that would mark their material for years. Peter Gabriel opens up with a voice reminiscent of his soul/r&b favorites, but it isn't long before the band opens up the song like medieval sonic surgeons, rippling through peaks and valleys with a determined authority. The drums of John Mayhew are loose and lazy, somehow fitting the material nonetheless, material which is folky, mythical, psychedelic and sometimes even proto-metal ("White Mountain", "The Knife"). Flutes intertwine with the rich 12-string acoustic and lush keyboard layers of Tony Banks, who finally gets a chance to play his heart out while acting as a firm foundation for each song (and this, more than anything, would be the anchor of the Genesis sound from here on out). Each song offers more and more with each listen, the writing deep and multi-layered (note the abundant foreshadowing of themes in "Stagnation"). The entire middle of the album--4 songs--from the authoritative drama of "White Mountain" to the calming "Dusk", takes lots of listening to sink in. Remarkable as they are, the impressive body of the album merely clears the way for the ending salvo of "The Knife". A real killer, "The Knife" is 9 sinister minutes, including a good bit of thunderous riffing and damaging rhythms, more than this band usually indulges in (Genesis music is many, many things, but metallic heaviness like this would rarely be heard from them again). This song offers a complex, epic arrangement that would become the band's standard on future albums.

'Trespass' might've been better with a less flimsy production and a few more tracks with the direct impact of the 'The Knife', but it still achieves a unique mood independent of the rest of the band's discography. A more-than-satisfying jumping-off point into the 6 (or so) legendary albums that would follow.

Review by Watcheroftheskies
4 stars This is in my opinion the start of Genesis as a band. Here we see the mechanations of what will come later from the band being drafted for the first time. Gabriel's voice is haunting and powerful on this album. You can hear the strife in the music and the outlook of the album is slightly grim, which for the time period is refreshing. The music, while the famous Phil Collins and Steve Hackett hadn't joined the band yet, is well written and well played.

This entire album is enjoyable from start to finish and there are no songs which stick out as bad in my opinion. Looking for Someone is a somewhat dark song that starts off slow and builds into a beautifully eerie instrumental with Peter on the flute and banks on the organ. White Mountain is also a pleasant song. Visions of Angels is a gourgeous composition which shows off the talents of Banks, Gabriel, and Rutherford very well. This song and the first are a good display of why these three stayed as core members of the band and how they dominated the sound of the music. The Knife sounds like something out of Black Sabbath, very heavy and dark. They even use vocal effects to make Peter's voice sound mechanical.

The engineering is sub par and the sound on the drums is a tad muffled along with the bass being non-existent in cretain portions of the album. This sort of dimishes the experience of what is still a very good album. I wonder if this would have been 4.5 or 5 stars barring that. I suppose we can never know.

In conclusion, this is an excellent effort by Genesis and while some may be biased by the absence of Hacket's guitar playing and Collins' drumming you should still give this album a listen. Tony Phillips and John Mayhew play excellently and contribute equally to the four stars this album deserves.

Review by belz
4 stars 4.4/5.0

As some said: this album is underrated. But it's damn good! To be honest, I like this one probably as much as Nursery Cryme. It's not an easy album to discover Genesis, and you have to listen to it again and again and again to really understand what it's really about.

I really enjoyed "Vision of Angels" and "The Knife". This last song is a must and every time I see the groupe "The Musical Box" (featuring Genesis as it really was) the show ends with that song. It's really something powerful.

If you like imaginative prog music with powerful lyrics, this album is for you.

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This is my personal favorite Genesis album, and also their only LP which I still listen quite frequently. It doesn't even have Phil Collins on drums yet, which may make it musically little different than their later albums, where his influence began (sadly?) to grow.

"Trespass" holds an eerie and mystic overall feeling on it. Musical emotions flow pleasantly from impressionistic pastorals to more aggressive and dramatic theatrical scenes. Lyrics work also as nice poetry, supporting the music's style and the tracks form an artistically contact album. The opener "Looking for Someone" peeks curiously behind Peter's powerful lyrical fronting, the orchestra keeping first quite quiet presence. The composition shifts between different musical emphasizes logically, escaping the mess of poorly considered symphonic epic mess, too often found from vinyl surfaces of progressive rock group's releases. "White Mountain" is musically eerie and beautiful, focusing to drama of ruthless power play, reflected to the society of wolves. "Visions of Angels" softens the listening experience by the blessings of its fragile beautifulness and religious harmony and piety. I felt the drum parts here were arranged wonderfully to choral mass of the song, rolling with bit clumsy but within time keeping fills and variations on rhythm's emphasis on beat aiming. On the B-side the vinyl starts rolling with "Stagnation", a hazy wandering in thicket of acoustic guitar chords, introducing the amplified band and compositional twists with patience. "Dusk" floats slowly and solemn as solitary rising moon, being very beautiful and tender bucolic vision. Final song "The Knife", which I think is the most aggressive Genesis song ever written, is a song about a violent revolution. Surprisingly, due its lyrical teachings, I remember reading an article where it was described as a "battle anthem" of Italian left wing radicals during the 1970's.

The album's cover art is also truly great in aesthetic way, and it describes the music presented in the vinyl it covers perfectly. To its leather surface is painted a rough, gothic style of scene with spared tones of grey, and this painting is slashed with a dagger. The iconoclast of traditional art with a symbol referring to the final song seems as clever inspiration. Within the opening album gatefold covers one finds a pastoral painting done in the same manner as the front cover, featuring also the knife.

I seriously recommend this record, especially to those who dislike the later classic recordings of the band. I guess this could also please the fans of the early King Crimson albums, as it has lots of acoustic guitars, flutes and mellotrons on it, resembling the sound textures of their tamer acoustic ballads.

Review by Cygnus X-2
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars I must admit that I bought this on an impromtu visit to my record store. I was very impressed on the first listen. Tony Phillips is a great guitarist and really fit the album well. His version of the Knife is superb (I like Hackett's better though). Gabriel's voice sounds great and Mayhew did a great job on the drums. Banks and Rutherford are as always giving great performances. This is a great improvement over FGTR in my opinion. Although they haven't reached their apex at this time in their career, they made an incredible record that should be owned by all Genesis fans.

The best songs are White Mountain and the Knife (the latter having a better interpretation of Genesis Live). Overall, this album is a sample of what is to come in Genesis' long career and should not be missed. 3.5/5.

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I've found out the joy of reviewing old albums from legendary bands like Genesis because it connects me with many people (some are new) who agree or disagree with my views. I think this is the true joy of reviewing prog music as it serves as a starting point to have a meaningful prog discussion over the net and occasionally we met face to face exchanging ideas about prog music. With the use of internet it makes all possible even meeting new friend from other part of the world like what I just experienced last week where a prog fan from France visiting my country and we had a great time exchanging prog passions. And I'm sure that Genesis Trespass review would trigger another tipping point for me as some people underrate this album - the reasons being no Hackett and/or no Phil Collins. In fact this album is truly excellent and it set a strong foundation for later Genesis music as we knew it through legendary albums like Foxtrot, Selling England, The Lamb, A Trick of The Tail.

I knew the album quite late after I heard The Knife performed live in Genesis Live (1973). I liked the energy projected by the band through that live record. I then looked for the album where The Knife was originally recorded. When I listened to the album at first time (cassette format) it really blew my mind as the opening track Looking For Someone starts off with Gabriel powerful voice :"Looking for someone" in a very accentuated style. Really greeeaaaattttt .!! The background organ followed with powerful drum work by John Mayhew (where was he after this album?). The music then flows with an excellent combination of silent / mellow passages and those with full- blown music in faster tempo. Anthony Philips guitar is stunning and it has characterized future guitar tunings for Genesis music. The grand piano by Tony Banks also excellent.

White Mountain is an acoustic guitar based music augmented with mellotron / keyboard work. The singing melody is stunning; performed with Gabriel's energetic voice. When the music moves into faster tempo, the accompanying rhythm section is really killing and it has become a memorable segment that will not vanish with the passage of time. The transition pieces with acoustic guitar and keyboard work is also touchy. Even now when I'm listening this track while writing this review I have a very deep feeling inside my heart that (sorry) I can only say it in my Javanese language "merinding". (Well, I think it's an emotional feeling where you feel really "touched" deep in your heart when you enjoy and feel engrossed with a certain segment of harmony / melody of a music you are listening to). It's a great track.

Visions of Angels combines the original music of Genesis from their debut From Genesis to Revelation to the new style of their music (Trespass onwards and stops until Duke, I think. Because after Duke the band turned poppy). The combination of acoustic guitar fills and keyboard work is really nice.

Stagnation starts with nice guitar fills and low register voice of Gabriel. The music moves into crescendo with an accentuation from acoustic guitar and keyboard. After relatively long mellow style opening. Keyboard solos performed in this track are really stunning. As the music turns into faster tempo, the organ takes beautiful melody which brings the music into more complex arrangements. There are some sudden break followed immediately with Gabriel singing. It's nice.

Dusk is a nice drum-less music with great melody combining acoustic guitar fills and organ / mellotron. The Knife has been Genesis legendary track with high driving rhythm section performed in fast tempo with high energy. The organ dominates the rhythm section, augmented with dynamic drum work. The overall track is truly uplifting. The style of this track has inspired later albums of Genesis especially Nursery Cryme and Foxtrot. It's a rocking track, combined with silent passages that feature Gabriel flute work!

Overall, it's an excellent album that any prog fan should not miss it. Keep on proggin' ..!

Progressively yours, GW

Review by Zitro
4 stars This is an album in which the band is searching for their sound. As a result, it is varied. Steve Hackett is not here, yet the guitarist does a fair job. Same for the drumming. The sound quality is not very good, and those looking for a masterpiece, look elsewhere. Genesis fans, do not hesitate to buy this though.

Looking For Someone : This song has a similar style of "Musical Box" and it is an excellent prog rock track in which the members (especially Tony Banks) shine. From the Gabriel vocal introduction to the instrumental sections. This song never disappoints. 8.5/10

White Mountain : The excellent acoustic song with nice keyboard work. The chorus contains gorgeous singing and a driving rhythm. 7.5/10

Vision of Angels : Another strong song from the band, with excellent organ work. Tony Banks may not be as fast as Emerson or Wakeman, but he excels in creating beautiful organ passages and atmospheres. Peter Gabriel is as strong as always. 7.5/10

Stagnation : A song that in my opinion lacks a bit of direction, yet is impressive overall. This is mellower than the rest of the album. It feels a bit long for me, yet it is not boring. 6.5/10

Dusk : The simpliest song from the album. It is a mellow melodic, and atmospheric tune in which Gabriel plays some nice flute. 6.5/10

The Knife : This highlight of the album. This is Genesis' hardest rocking song they have ever done. After the hard rock in its first 3 minutes (that has its legendary chorus of "Some of you are going to die. Martyrs of course to the freedom that I shall provide!!") there is an instrumental break that takes many listens to get into. Later, it gets rocking again with a long electric guitar solo. Another section comes after that, and the song ends. 9.5/10

In conclusion, this is a very strong effort by Genesis, but their next 4 albums have higher quality. Get this one after you listened to their masterpieces.

My Grade : B-

Review by Seyo
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Often underrated gem of early GENESIS!

An excellent dark and pastoral album with lots of flute, acoustic strings and Hammond organ, beautifully written mysterious lyrics by Gabriel and strong guitar by Phillips. At times bears a feeling of Van Der Graaf-like eerie atmosphere and mystic experience. All songs exceptional with only perhaps "Visions of Angels" stretched a bit too dull. "Stagnation" is early masterpiece and "The Knife".... The Knife!

Very close to ****1/2 and is a must for any prog collection.

Review by erik neuteboom
4 stars Great to notice that so many reviewers on this site found a challenge in writing something about this second album from Genesis. After their promising debut LP they were released from the commercial thinking producer Jonathing King who spoiled some very fine tracks by adding smooth string-arrangements. This second album showscases the wonderful, very distinctive voice from ex-drummer Peter Gabriel: the first words in "Looking for someone" sound so emotional, so desperate. And in fact Peter was an emotional traumatised man, his father had no time for him and his mother used to find more inspiration in his sister! But also the 12-string acoustic guitars from Rutherford and Phillips were an extra dimension and gave the sound a warm, folky flavor. The keyboard colouring from Tony Banks is very tasteful and Anthony Phillips has some fine moments. But in the exciting track "The knife" (the proove that Genesis was not a boring hippie band) he sounds a bit tame, later Steve Hackett would blow away the Genesis fans with his fiery contribution. I still love this album because it sounds so warm and the huge potential from Genesis started to shine. A WONDERFUL 'PROGROCK DEBUT'!
Review by Progbear
3 stars Definitely a step up from the Bee Gees-alikes of their debut, but still pretty much a transitional disc. Much of what's presented here is basically pop songs extended with prog flourishes on organ and Mellotron ("Visions of Angels", "Looking For Someone"). And it's all heavily under the shadow of King Crimson's IN THE COURT OF THE CRIMSON KING, which the band members freely admit to being their paramount influence at the time.

Still, there are definite glimpses of Genesis' future greatness here. The theatricality of "White Mountain" and concert favourite "The Knife" are a definite peep in the window. But the real jewel in the crown is "Stagnation", the first of their many multiple-part pieces, shifting through numerous moods over the course of nearly nine minutes.

So, Genesis were just getting their sea-legs here, but it's still a strong album, showing strides of progress after their mediocre, dated debut album. It shouldn't be your first Genesis purchase by any means, but established fans of the band will definitely want it.

Review by Prognut
4 stars Things are estarting to get going! More serious stuff here. Still a band on the making!! A significant improvment from their debut album. You start felling all the good thing that are about to happend for these guys!! The higlights for me "Looking for Somone" and "The Knife"
Review by The Crow
4 stars What a wonderful album!

After the awful (in my opinion) "From Genesis To Revelation", came the album that made the "real" Genesis debut, because this is the first album that sounds to Genesis, although the classic members (Steve Hackett and Phil Collins are missed in "Trespass"...) were not still here, the spirit and the quality of their music are in every track of this great album...

I specially like the Anthony Phillipīs work on guitar here. He played very beautiful acoustic passages in this disc, in a softer and calmer style than Steve Hackettīs playing... This fact make "Trespass" very special, because itīs a soft album, and the strong moments are very few... In later Genesis efforth the Hackettīs playin gives a lot of force and electric feeling, while the Tony Banks keyboards gains protagonism along the albums... But I think the real protagonist of this album (apart of Gabrielīs voice, of course...) is the marvellous Anthony Phillipīs guitar... His playin sometimes is very evocative and epic (White Mountain), sometimes itīs just soft beautiful (Visions of Angels, Dust...), and sometimes itīs strong too (The Knife).

I like very much the Steve Hackettīs playing, but the Phillipīs one itīs maybe more enjoyable and accesible... And this is the best thing I find in "Trespass"!!!

Best songs for me: Looking For Someone (great opening and a clear presentation of the otstanding Genesis potential...), Stagnation (for me the best song of the album, with an impressive keyboard solo...) and The Knife (an advance of the Nursery Crimeīs sound...). But I must say that every song here itīs very good, there isnīt weak songs in this album (maybe Visions of Angels itīs a little repetitive...)!!!

I will give "Trespass" "only" 4 stars, because this album is easily surpased by later Genesisīs efforths and because I donīt like very much the John Mayhew drumming! But itīs a must for all the 70īs prog lovers in itīs softer and relaxing way!!!

Review by Atkingani
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars Impressive and provocative. All songs are great and some real prog-classics. Band members were entering their 20s and showing skill and expertise. Gabriel seemed totally defined as an artist and a frontman.

Unfortunately this album was made available in Brazil long after the series ranging from "Nursery Cryme" to W&W. It is necessary to adjust the mind back to 1970 and take in account that this particular work is inserted in the early progressive stream.

'Looking for someone', opens the album in a grand manner, all those variations and mysteries so typical of Genesis works are present here. A great song but many times overlooked.

'White Mountain', this song could be part of any other Genesis album released in the 70s. The way the band transport us to the wilderness atmosphere is chilling, almost haunting. A classical.

'Visions of angels' has an apparent cheesy appeal but Gabriel's whispering voice reminds us to hear beyond the sound and after getting into the song it's like a feeling of loss, of uncertainty. Amazing.

'Stagnation' is another classic; notoriously splendid. Playing and singing reach their peaks here. The best track in the album.

'The knife', much more powerful and astonishing in the live version, even so it's a great song.

'Dusk', a forgotten gem, the guitar intro followed by Gabriel's cutting vocals prepare us to a marvelous journey. Choir and instruments accompaniment are awesome.

Minus 0.5-star for some recording problems, minus 0.5-star for the studio version of 'The knife', weaker than the live version. A great album, indeed: imperdible. Total: 4.

Review by Eclipse
5 stars Where all a die-hard GENESIS' fan i can't refuse to see the light that my cd- player releases when i play this seminal and magic debut of progressive music. I'm saying debut because apparently their before album is not prog and follows a more pop fashion so it is fair to say that this is the debut of prog-GENESIS, right? Yeah right. Ah, this album never disapoints me too, and i think it is underrated in a chaotic way. The closing track is often the only remembered one, even by GENESIS' fans, but come on, how can unique gems like "White Mountain" and "Stagnation" be forgotten? These songs are all carried with emotion, something that some prog bands like YES and that trio that released the disastrous Brain Salad Surgery usually forget to add to their music.

The mythic voyage on Trespass starts with an acapella (a formula that will inspire the SEBTP album some years later) screaming the song's title. "Looking for Someone" is a beautiful and catchy tune that offers an apparent transition from pop-GENESIS to the begining of their prog quest. Here Gabriel shows a nice flute moment a-la Ian Anderson as well as his great vocal skills. The song contains nifty instrumental sections and since it carries a deep emotional luggage it also never ceases to amaze me. Good intro to prog land. After this, we are led to "White Mountain", a mesmerizing song with a latin rhythm around some of its lenght and also a lot of flute present. In this album Gabriel noticeable explores his skills as a flute player, adding more to the angelical factor present here. At the middle there is some beats and he uses a nice vocals technique sounding like an echo from heaven, and the song's main theme returns with that neat keyboard riff and great backing vocals by the members. Near the ending we have a moving section of choir and acoustic guitar that will bring tears to your eyes, so moving and deep! Whoa! What a song!!! *takes a calm down pill* Ok, a piano announces "Visions of Angels" which follows a similar touching fashion, so emotional and crying lyrics by Gabe. The chorus is beautiful! Again, the track has an interesting middle section slowly leading to the track's climax, with a choir work that takes you to the clouds. The song returns to its main theme and then we have a second climax similar to the first but this time with a crying mellotron! How can music be so deep? Don't ask me how, ask angel Gabriel and his mates what the heaven were they thinking while composing such magestic stuff! "Stagnation", another epic song, kicks in and it is another favorite of mine. Starting very quiet with a shy Gabriel singing some lines we are led to a long atmospheric instrumental section making it perhaps the album's best moment. There's some key notes floating like rain falling on water, taking your brain to a fairy tale land. The voyage reaches its true climax here. Then, there's is a different pace on the music, in another climax, with a different keyboard sound this time faster and very emotional. Gabriel's voice and flute quietly returns and then there's another atmospheric part with some sligh "ah ah ah"s and then some desperate ones, sounding like a cry. "I wanna drink, i wanna drink", shows how versatile his voice is. The song closes with a nice flute solo and soon followed by some keys with a group vocal work similar to the one present on the past track. The forgotten song "Dusk" then appears and may be the strongest one in terms of how it takes you to "another places", and has more neat flute work as well as some moving acoustic guitar ocasional soloing, plus an hypnotizing vocal performance by the band. Its ending shows some strong piano notes to flow well on the chaotic and NOT OUT OF PLACE awesome "The Knife", with its dancing intro and fast lyrics. "Now in this ugly world it is time to destroy this evil" - "Stand up and fight for what you know you're right; we'll strike at the lies that spreaded like diseases though our minds". Despite the other violent lyrics there's these amazing two messages in the lines showing a kind of "celestial" but also quite darke feel that was present during all the album. A long instrumental voyage with neat keys and guitar solos follows showing some really interesting bass lines. The battle happens and we listen to a scream saying "We won!" showing that it finally got a winner...the album then closes majestically while you are blown way from what you have just experienced.

This is an amazing addition to any prog music, it is at the same level as Dark Side of the Moon, Red, Lark's Tongues and several other albums that get far more recognition than this forgotten gem of the begining of the 70's. For the people who say this is not as good as Nursery Cryme or Foxtrot: Give it some more listens, as i said on another review, Trespass, Nursery Cryme and Foxtrot work as an unique album IMO, on around 140 minutes of perfect music and glory - and if you think for a second, this is the same lenght as FK's pretentious Unfold the Future, with the cute difference that is pure emotional classic symphonic original Genesian prog all along.

Amazing begining of an amazing band!

Review by NJprogfan
4 stars What a second album! How a band can go from a popfest overly orchestarted pile of bile to this is flat out amazing! With Peter's vocals out in front, its wonderful to hear him sing, even when at times it's reminicient of the first, (listen to the track 'Dusk'). What you get tho is the beginning of a kind of prog that for all good intentions is almost as legendary as ITCOTCK. Why? Mainly Tony Banks monsterous keyboards. Three tracks bear this out: 'White Mountain' with its galloping beat, 'Stagnations' keyboard runs that show up in later albums and 'The Knife' with its power. Not that I'm knocking all the other players, but Mayhews drums are understated, Phillips guitar rarely explodes ala Hackett-like and Rutherfords bass is practically buried. I would love to give this album a 5-star rating, but even with the re-mastered version, the sound quality leaves much to be desired. But you just can't get past the fact that the band has talent and are trying new things. And to think that many, many a band were influenced by these guys, (eh, mi Italiano brothers?) a template has been set forth for all the world to copy, and rarely can match. Althoughs it's their first prog recording, it's a necessity. Go get it now! 4 1/2 stars!
Review by Australian
4 stars

"Trespass" is the first Genesis album in which everything came together, while many may disagree with this I believe that it is more or less the truth. The only major difference in the band is the fact that the guitars master Steve Hackett is not present on this recording; instead an equally talented man Anthony Philips features on guitar. I really have to say that I like what he brought to this album, more than once his guitar is what made this album shine out. Also there is no Phil Collins here, which is really the only thing lacking from "Trespass."

Peter Gabriel's voice finds its true sense on the album and his vocals on tracks such as "Stagnation" and "The Knife" really make you think. His more conceptual vocals on "White Mountain" are also noteworthy. Another major development in this album is the customary and unique acoustic guitar melodies which are a defining feature of Genesis for me. I'm pretty convinced that Anthony Philips can be blamed for this.

The album opens with "Looking for Someone" in which Peter Gabriel sings "Looking for Someone, I guess I'm doing that." Such an appropriate line for the opening track of the album. Some more vocals follow with a few lively sections bursting out here with a bit of electric guitar. The song usually dies down to something similar to the beginning of the song. The last two minutes of the peice is pure master work in terms of instrumentalism, very proggy.

"White Mountain" is a conceptual song as far as I'm concerned. It's about foxes and fox hierarchy, it's kind of hard to explain but it seems to be about a fox named One Eye, and another named Fang. I believe this is the song from which the title of the album was derived as there are some references to trespassing and related matters. This is a completely delightful progressive work, trust me you'll love it!

"Visions of Angles" features some very strong vocals and instrumentation, with some nice flute melodies here and there. Its Just an all round great song to put it plainly. There are a handful of melodies which are repeated continuously throughout the song, most of which are very easily caught in one's mind.

"Stagnation" is perhaps my favourite song on "Trespass." It is about a survivor of an atomic explosion. The song is quite mellow with some beautiful acoustic guitar and synthesizer melodies. The quietness of these sections makes the louder sections more meaningful due to the grandeur they possess. My favourite line from the album is on this track "And will I wait forever, beside the silent mirror and fish for bitter minoes besides the weeds and slimy waters."

"Dusk" is a very mellow song and features powerful backing and harmony vocals which gives the song an otherworldly sensation. The song remains relatively the same, very mellow and subtly beautiful.

"The Knife" is a dark and image forging song about what sounds to be a revolution. Everything about this song is perfect, the vocals, instrumentation, guitar solo, everything! Words can't describe the grandeur and brilliance of this song for me its defiantly a Genesis masterpiece. The guitar solo really re affirms Anthony Philips as a masterful guitarist.

What a great album! Seriously this album is the lowest rated of all the Peter Gabriel era Genesis albums but in my opinion it is the best. It's different to later Genesis albums, in a good way. I'd recommend this album to all symphonic prog fans so you may love it like I do.

Review by chessman
4 stars Although this was the second release from the band, most fans consider it to be their first 'true' album, as their debut was a far more poppy affair, under the guidance of the legendary Johnathan King. Here they returned 'fully formed and ready to influence generations of future budding prog musicians.' Opening track 'Looking For Someone' has all the trademarks of classic Genesis. It starts with the rough vocals of Peter Gabriel, singing over a solitary organ from Tony Banks. Then the band kick in. Anthony Phillips is particularly effective here, his lead guitar subtle and understated, complimenting perfectly the strong melody. The song is quite aggressive for the band at that time. Wonderful stuff. Then comes perhaps my favourite track on the album, the brilliant 'White Mountain' with lovely haunting flute and superb, distant 12 string guitars, almost impersonating mandolins at times. The story, about a wolf on the run from the pack, is well written and shows the direction some of their later lyrics would take. Third song in we have 'Visions Of Angels' probably, if I had to choose, my least favourite on the record, yet still a good song. The chorus has a wonderfully angelic feel to it from the backing vocals, which were doubtless supplied by Tony and Mike. (Remember, these were the days before a certain Mr Collins was to add his distinctive voice to the proceedings!) Side two of the old record started with the next track, 'Stagnation'. This was a stage favourite at the time and began life as a rather longer, sprawling piece, which the band themselves thought was one of their best songs of the time. Plenty of 12 strings here too, with the tempo only speeding up slightly as the climax is approached, with strident vocals. Nice keyboards here too. Already you can see how important and dominant a figure Tony Banks was in the band. 'Dusk', I think, is one of the oldest pieces here. And I have always enjoyed this piece. A rather dark, sombre tune with a gentle, almost eerie chorus, it exemplifies the band's more naive, youthful side in a quiet way. You could almost imagine sitting round a camp fire in the dark of the night singing this. Finally comes the best known track on here, and a stage favourite of the time; 'The Knife'. The most aggressive song here it has more good electric guitar work from Ant, and the classic growling, gruff, almost hoarse vocals of Peter are well to the fore. The ending is a suitable climax to the album, with pulsating bass and keyboards finishing the song off powerfully. One has to remember here, the band members were still only twenty years old when this came out! A tremendous effort for a band so young. This was the start of the phenomenon that was to rule for the next 6 or 7 years. Not quite a masterpiece, but nonetheless pretty essential for those interested in both Genesis and the history of prog music. At the time, there was nothing like this to be heard, although Crimson's 'Court Of The Crimson King' was a big influence on them at the time. But this was a new sound to add to a new genre. Brilliant.
Review by Tony Fisher
4 stars It's hardly credible after their appalling first effort, but this is a magnificent, moody album which sets the scene for the 3 masterpieces that would follow. All the pieces of the final jigsaw were not quite yet in place, since John Mayhew has Collins' place on the drum stool and Anthony Phillips is guitarist here rather than Steve Hackett, but they contribute fully to the overall quality. Be in no doubt, this was the first real Genesis album. It's often, quite unfairly, overlooked because of what folowed, but this is a gem in its own right.

The tracks vary from gentle and peaceful (Dusk, Stagnation, Visions of Angels) to aggressive, (Looking for Someone and the incomparable The Knife, where Gabriel spits out the vocals with venom). White Mountain is a narrative tale of a wolf which defies the norms of his society and pays the ultimate price.

Throughout, Banks' organ and mellotron soar majestically to provide most of the melodies. Phillips' guitar work is generally understated but effective though his solo on The Knife is a classic. Gabriel contributes some gentle flute work which adds to the ethereal feel of the gentler tracks and his vocal interpretations are majestic; the man has such a range of emotion and tone.

If there are weaknesses, they lie mainly in the production. The mix is muffled, particularly with the bass and drums, giving the impression that Mayhew was not quite up to the task set at times and may have led to his dismissal. At times, it sounds compressed and does not allow the music to soar as it should.

The music may, in fact, be worth the full 5* but it is difficult to extract the full benefit due to the dodgy sound quality. Overall, a very good, essential 4* album.

Review by Certif1ed
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars In the Court of the Crimson King

OK, so J.K. kept the rights to the songs on "From Genesis to Revelation". But then he had to let them go and play with the big boys where they belonged, and spent the rest of his free life telling the world how he had discovered them. I bet that smarted just a bit.

After that, Genesis spent many a happy evening spinning the magnificent debut from the other Crimson King, and getting inspiration, not to mention revelations, about where the music was going to take them next.

Keeping their roots firmly entrenched in folk music, leaning more towards the off-the-wall 12-string driven sound of the ISB, Genesis nevertheless liked the hard rock sound and apocryphal walls of synths so much, that these too had to be incorporated.

This, coupled with Gabriel's confidence in his articulate delivery of lyrics that approached real poetry, with their themes of fantasy and nostalgic pastoral times of yore, meant that there was no sophomore jinx for this band - they had arrived, and this can truly be seen as the debut.

Having got rid of drummer John Silver, they had, unfortunately, replaced him with the eminently sackable John Mayhew, who clearly had about as much understanding of the pathos and drama in Genesis' music as someone who didn't, and as much co-ordination behind the drum kit as a learner driver.

Personally, I love the production on this album - even if I do hate the drumming. The feel of nostalgia is just as strong as the King Crimson debut, if not more so, and that underlines the lyrics very well, and brings out something almost mediaeval in the music - a pretty good job for an electrified folk/rock band, if you ask me!


And as for the music, well, if you require a definition of what exactly constitutes good Prog Rock, then here it is. Not a masterpiece of the genre - the drums let it down too much, and there are other, far less glaring flaws besides - but a fine and solid example that should be in every Progger's collection.

What exactly is so good about it?

"Looking for Someone" puts us in the mood straight away - that a capella vocal entry (a trick later re-used on "Selling England by the Pound") is a wake-up call, as well as a statement of intent. Banks drifts eerie keyboard lines, and Phillips gently entwines contrapuntal guitar lines - and the first thing we notice is the soothing absence of the pentatonic scale.

Soft sixths and minor sevenths are the order of the day, along with slightly rambling melody lines that are a huge relief from the multitude of scale practitioners that were around then and, sadly, seem to have increased in number to this day. This creates a feeling of expectation that is gentle, punctuated and illustrated by watercolour softs and shades of musical dynamic.

Formally, we have a reasonably standard song structure of "verse1", "verse2", "chorus", "verse3", up until the instrumental bridge, but despite the contrast between "verse" and "chorus" sections, we do not feel the chorus aspect - it feels more like a refrain:

The lyrical structure is clearly not designed as a singalong - more as a reflective meditation, with the contrasting music providing balance in the structure that helps this song feel like no rock song ever recorded before - like a continuing narrative with subtle dynamic, rather than a "hit".


The words are superbly coloured by the instruments, not in any predictable literal sense, but through little devices such as the harmonic movement from F -> B flat -> A minor -> D minor accompanying the phrase "You see the sunlight through the trees, to keep you warm in peaceful shades of green".

This chord progression begins with a very warm feeling, but with the introduction of the minor flavour, feels like we are entering shades - it's quite tangible, as the minor chords are noticeably cooler.

The Genesis of instrumentals

The instrumental section is where things get really interesting, bearing all the hallmarks of the Genesis that would go on to produce such a fine crop of Prog albums. Musical passages appear in chunks that go together to create an impressionist vision of a world populated by the protaganist on horseback - we hear galloping hooves for a while - resting in a clearing - we clearly hear twittering birds in Gabriel's flute - in ever-changing rolling countryside continuing the search all too briefly before the song resumes.

This is no mere widdly-woo look at me I'm great and can play scales really fast type solo section - this is directly from the new King Crimson school of thought; the actual development of rock music based not only on previous thematic ideas, but using new ideas to create an image of the entire concept of the song in a microcosm.


When the final verse arrives, there are jagged changes in the accompaniment, with powerful, towering blocks of chords, reflecting arrival in a city - or the arrival of the city, indicating the timeless nature of the lyrical material. It's not clear if the search has brought the protagonist to the city, or whether it has been built on the land in which the archetype is continuing the search begun in times of antiquity. I rather like the latter idea.

A new instrumental section, slightly jarring, starting and stopping, full of crushed note chords, paints the mechanical nature of the surroundings, takes us to what could have been a real climax, if only they'd found Phil Collins sooner.

The End

Unfortunately, that is where most of the technical fireworks finish. That is not to say you should stop listening here - far from it - it's just that any analysis would necessarily be scant of the 5 remaining tracks, including the monster "The Knife", which is as good as everyone says it is.

The attention to detail is lower in "White Mountain", for example; Although the introduction is quite magnificent - Banks' keyboard layers shimmering and twisting around Phillips' wily guitar lines - Gabriel lowers the tone a little with some of those scales he was using on "From Genesis to Revelation".

The introduction contradicts everything you've ever read about the production on this album - edgy, rumbling bass, coarse mellotron and Phillip's rich 12-string sound all combine to produce a sound that's almost Venetian. Gabriel's theatrical vocals introduce the song with genuine excitement and poetry, and this builds to a climax around 1:12.


Then it all descends into a kind of soft mushiness, with a repetitive accompaniment inducing a feel of a standard song, which lends nothing to the tale unfolding in the lyrics save a vague feeling of travelling.


Around 1:45, we get more of Phillips' and Rutherford's guitar layers, segueing into a beautiful flute melody for an unexpected instrumental passage.

Some vocal harmonies are apparent on the second verse - but then we get another instrumental passage based on the previous one, which leads to a sinister stomping accompaniment for the next verse. Here again, Gabriel's theatricals shine - the highlight being the line "And he, the Usurper must die".

Another beautiful flute-driven passage leads to a combination of mellotron and, of all things, whistling! The edgy introduction returns, building more quickly with human voices humming, and dropping away suddenly, by way of meditation on what has gone before - the story of Fang, son of great Fang who paid the highest price for seeing the crown of the Gods, but nonetheless, died an honorable death.

From Genesis...

"Visions of Angels" sounds like something left over from the "Genesis to Revelations" sessions - but with the instrumental passage left in, and, it has to be said that the instrumental passage is much more interesting than the song itself which, although full of softly off-the wall harmonic progressions and two-part verse structures is even more mushy than in "White Mountain". Revelations

A tiny fanfare ends the first chorus, and this is recapitulated as an introduction to the intrumental after the second. An inexpert bass line underpins Banks' and Phillips' improvs, with Banks switching keyboards to provide textural layers. This is soon joined by vocal "Aahs" that remind me of the vocalised passage in "A Saucerful of Secrets". A piano motif lightens the mood and is joined by the flute for a smooth transition into the last verse, which features some superb arrangements that cast aside the earlier mushy sound.

The last chorus is iterated twice - the first time with a greatly stripped-back accompaniment, and the second much fuller, providing a beautiful progressive feel. The second idea of the second instrumental bridge is worked out to equally beautiful effect to end the piece, giving a coherent and tight, not to mention progressive structure to the piece.


Harmonically speaking, "Stagnation" is somewhat disappointing, revolving around 2- chord jams - but as an overall structure, it is quite stunning, with a naive charm and plenty of unexpected textural experimentation, some of which works, some of which, well, you make up your mind...

There is also plenty of that Genesis light and shade that we've come to love and expect, with many a hint at the greatness that was to come on later albums. "Supper's Ready" is anticipated more than once, among others - but there are also stand-out passages of truly bad drumming and bass playing that render all comparisons to "proper" Genesis nul and void.

All in all, a song with much going for it, but nothing special in the Prog Rock canon.

What about those Mellotrons, eh?

"Dusk" is a far more accomplished piece of Prog, with chiming bells and tasty little flute runs topping scrunchy and sometimes angular guitar chords - and what about those Mellotrons, eh? The emphasis here is no longer on the instrumental passages - at last, the sum of the parts is greater than the whole, and the individual sections are all well thought-out and enjoyable in themselves while still meshing together perfectly to make a piece of tangible spontaneity second only to "The Knife".

The Final Cut

Finally, we come to the monster that is "The Knife". Spoiled somewhat in places by appalling drumming, if we ignore that, then it's a miracle of heavy Prog-Rock engineering.

The unmistakable keyboard introduction, punctuated with aggressive guitar stabs builds in intensity as the verse progresses, and these lines are developed as the irresistable chorus progresses, Gabriel joining to make a quite perfect trio of tension-builders. At last we get something passable in the bass, even if it does get a little lost here and there, and clingy at other times, it provides good drive where it gets confident, and at times does exactly what is needed to provide support to keyboards, guitars and flute, before realising that it needs to do a bit more, and starts clinging again.

No such problems in the other parts, though, which seamlessly explore and develop themes, grow new melodic lines and textures, maintaining a wonderfully organic feel to the piece that is simply not present in rock music before this album was released - and that includes "In The Court...", which never achieved this level of overall improvisation.

While none of the playing is overtly virtuosic, the growing of musical form is the most impressive feature of this piece, and something that even Genesis themselves found hard to top in later compositions.


Trespass is worth buying for "The Knife" alone, with "Dusk" and "Looking for Someone" as bonuses.

While the other songs have plenty that is good about them, they simply don't reach the standards of the latter.

This album represents the transition between the group who recorded "From Genesis to Revelation" and the group who recorded "Nursery Cryme", and while Steve Hackett came in to make significant contributions, one can't help but wonder what would have happened if Anthony Phillips, who has composition credits for all tracks, had remained with the group.

Essential album for your Prog Rock collection for the tracks I've highlighted - although there are plenty more that are essential as complete albums.

The best Prog Rock album you'll ever find from 1970.

Review by OpethGuitarist
3 stars One of the better Genesis albums.

And that's coming from a non-fan, so it must mean something (or maybe it doesn't). Other than SEBTP, this might be the next best Genesis album. Of course, the best quality might be that there is no Phil Collins. Trespass feels the most artistic and perhaps the most genuine. While others I have found to be a bit overblown and too bland sounding, this record feels much more sincere and the musicianship is still there.

I'm sure I'm also one of the few who cares nothing for The Knife. It's the heaviest track on here and the one I like the least. It sounds more like the later Genesis outputs as well, while the other 5 songs have an innocence about them that makes them sublime and beautiful. The Knife, for me, sticks out like a sore thumb among a bunch of other really good tracks.

A good output by one of the most revered bands in prog rock. A bit different from the works of their "classic" lineup, but I've found it to be a very good listening experience. A great little bit in the early history of progressive rock.

Review by ZowieZiggy
5 stars Here we are.

The truly first Genesis LP. I bought this vinyl album back in 1974. I already knew "The Knife" from the "Genesis Live" album (first one of my Genesis collection). I really felt in love with Trespass. Not a single track is weak.

Side one is equally balanced between three tracks of almost the same lenght. It is full of poetry, wonderfull acoustic moments, flute passages, and of course Peter's voice which had seriously grown up since the poor "From Genesis to Revelation". The three of them are really very good songs (probably in my top 20 best of the band). The ambience of the record is very smooth and tranquil, but never boring.

The opener "Looking For Someone" is my fave on this side and wonderfully combines soft parts with more vigorous ones. Peter is quite dramatic, and his so special voice serves the music briliantly.

The overall mood of this side is rather melancholic. "White Mountains" is so moving...especially the vocalized closing part. "Visions Of Angels" also leaves the listener quite touched. Delicate, sweet and melodic. It is almost on par with the opening song. Another excellent moment indeed.

Side two opens with "Stagnation" which I liked (and still do) very much. It is one of the most underrated one of the band (there will one track like this on the following two albums as well, but this another story). Scarcely played live, this track is very melodious. So far, I have to admit that this album owes an awful lot to the symphonic side of "ITCOTCK". And "Stagnation" is maybe the vibrant homage to this great album.

"Dusk" is a very cool acoustic track with nice guitar and flute moments. Pastoral and quite: on line with the rest of the material.

The closing number "The Knife" will always represent one of the favourite live track of the band. It is completely different from the other songs featured on "Trespass". What we get here is pure madness, almost hard rock.

The lyrics are pretty weird, dark and violent : "I'll give you the names of those you must kill, All must die with their children. Carry their heads to the palace of old, Hang them high, let the blood flow" !

Some electric guitar parts are extremely powerful, mighty shall I say. The lyrics are spledid as well and warn about the human madness during war periods.

This song represents a special souvenir for me: I was lucky (and therefore today old) enough to see them performing "The Lamb Lies Down" live in Brussels in April 75. Since Belgium has always been kind of special for "Genesis" (they played their first concert outside of the UK in Brussels on March 7, 1971 at la Ferme V), they played "The Knife" as the second and last encore (usually they were playing either "The Musical Box" OR "Watcher of the Skies"). Brussels was one of the very few venues of The Lamb tour where Genesis played two encores ! I still have the shiver when I remind myself of this fabulous moment.

For all these reasons, I rate this album with five stars. Excellent from start to finish (even if "Dusk" is a little weaker) it reminds me so many good souvenirs (especially in those dark days that I am facing now).

The essence of the band is there. Two new musicians will soon join the band and new directions will be explored. But that's another great story!

This review was edited on October 28th, 2009.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars So what do you do when your debut album flops ? You go out and buy a mellotron and try all over again (haha). Anthony Phillips 12 string guitar is all over this one and Peter Gabriel plays the flute more on this record then on any other.This is such an impressive album.

"Looking For Someone" is all about Mr.Gabriel's amazing vocals, although Tony Banks does a great job as well. Some excellent flute and guitar too. Good song, but I like "White Mountain" better. It opens with mellotron and Gabriel's incredible vocals followed later by pulsating keys, flute and 12 string guitar.

"Visions Of Angels" opens with piano and some intricate guitar. We are treated to a little mellotron and more nice piano melodies. I really like "Stagnation". This song has some really beautiful pastoral moments, with gentle vocals and flute. There are also some uptempo moments as drums build and the vocal melody is great. "Dusk" is a dreamy, pastoral song with gentle vocals, flute and 12 string guitar. Nice."The knife" is an uptempo tune with a catchy beat. Things get more aggressive after 5 minutes and check out the beautiful guitar melodies from Mr.Phillips ! Great song !

This is where it started to come together for the band, and this is an outstanding record.

Review by russellk
3 stars A lovely, gentle, fragile album that continually fails to grip me. Apart from 'The Knife', that is.

The rating for this album is undoubtedly higher because it is part of the early GENESIS canon. In my view, excluding their un-Genesis debut album, this is the weakest album GENESIS issued - in any era. It simply doesn't contain the delightful melodies, the soaring, glorious moments and the sweet GENESIS vibe we all associate with the band in their prime. The musicians can all play their instruments, so musicianship isn't the problem here.

There are hints here of the strong musical force this group would become. At their best, GENESIS juxtapose gentle melodies with moments of drama and farce, with emphasis on voice (Peter Gabriel) and keyboard (Tony Banks). The guitars (Anthony Phillips here, Steve Hackett later) and rhythm section play less of a role than those familiar with recent progressive music are familiar with. The effect is to emphasise beauty rather than power. If that's not what you like in music, I suspect you'll wonder what all the fuss over GENESIS is about.

The problem with this record is two-fold: composition and production. There simply isn't enough dynamic variation in the first five songs: the balance of riotous fun, otherworldly drama and fantasy is obscured by muddy production (this album defines poor production, in my view) and a lack of risk-taking in composition. Too many of the tracks are pastoral, which is why 'The Knife' stands out.

Ah, 'The Knife'. Right up with the best thing they ever did. What a towering shame it couldn't have been recorded with the crisp production values of, say, 'Trick Of The Tail'.

To be honest, you could give this album a miss and not lose much from your GENESIS experience. Obviously you have to buy the group's key albums. Go ahead. But I don't think this is one.

Review by Slartibartfast
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam
5 stars Trespass for me is the beginning of the essential Genesis. I'm not as down on From Genesis to Revelation as others are, but this one has some musical moments that gave me the goosebumps/rush sensation when I first started listening to it. Sure Hackett and Collins aren't there yet, but Anthony Phillips is on par with Hackett as witnessed by his huge discography of solo albums after he left the band. The drummer here, John Mayhew, faded off into obscurity. Apparently moved to Australia and became a carpenter.

The lyrics seem a bit gloomy for a band who's members were so young at the time. With Trespass, Genesis left behind the short song format, the strings and really made a quantum leap forward musically.

Stagnation is one my favorites on the album. There's and introduction to the song in the original LP album cover: "To Thomas S. Eiselberg, a very rich man, who was wise enough to spend all his fortunes in burying himself many miles beneath the ground. As the only surviving member of the human race, he inherited the whole world." The introduction to the Knife, which is also missing is "For those that trespass against us." Very moving line in Visions of Angels - "Ice is moving and the worlds begun to freeze, see the sunlight stopped and deadened by the breeze, Minds are empty bodies move insensitive, some believe that when they die they really live."

This one's long overdue for a remaster, but apparently MCA Records (USA) has ownership of this one. (A little update to that, according to this site there is apparently a remaster out there, but it's not readily available if at all.) My original CD copy is a Virgin Records release, which is also not a remaster, but is superior to the MCA version, which has some sloppy song fade outs that weren't in the original mix. I bought MCA's version thinking it was a remaster, but ended up selling it and keeping my original CD. The main fault I can find with the Virgin edition is they butchered the album cover art. Kind of ironic since the album cover is a painting with a knife slashing through it. Would have been nice to see inner album artwork reproduced as well.

I'd put Trespass head to head with any other progressive release from 1970. If not number one, then certainly in the top 5 or 10.

Review by progaardvark
COLLABORATOR Crossover/Symphonic/RPI Teams
5 stars Genesis certainly got their act together after their dismal debut. In a complete turnaround, they went from sappy 1960s-style pop songs to full-throttle symphonic progressive rock with dark lyrics and some amazingly innovative musicianship, such as the dual 12-strings and Banks' haunting keyboards. This is still a pre-Hackett and pre-Collins Genesis, but don't let that alarm you, as Phillips and Mayhew do a wonderful job. This album would set the foundation for the masterpieces that were to come.

Not quite as exquisite as Foxtrot, Nursery Cryme, or Selling England by the Pound, so I'd have to say 4.5 stars for this almost masterpiece. However, due to it's historic importance that led Genesis down the path of progressive rock, I'm going to round it up to five stars rather than round down. An excellent, highly recommended album, especially for its historical significance.

Review by Prog-jester
5 stars Hey, I haven’t reviewed this one yet. Gonna do right now!!!

“Trespass” had one of the first GENESIS songs that I fell in love with immediately – “White Mountain”, almost 7 minutes of bliss for me, a Prog newbie 5 years ago. “Looking for Angels” with Gabriel’s opening (sounding like Ozzy Osbourne to my ears!!!) had some incredible places as well, but I had to grow up to appreciate it in its full beauty. More gentle pieces like “Dusk” and “Vision of Angels” made almost in a pastoral manner, played mostly on acoustic instruments. Two main album’s epics, “Stagnation” and “The Knife”, balance on polar sides; the first one is a half-acoustic mellotronized ballad with pompous coda, while the second one is an unquestionable highlight of early concerts, dramatic and catchy battle sketch with awesome instrumental section.

Despite some average moments (every album has its own lacks), this is still a solid record, which entered a way for GENESIS to The Top Prog League. I simply can’t understand people who prefer band’s debut to “Trespass”! It’s a Must, an essential record, not to be missed!!!

Review by Tarcisio Moura
4 stars wow! What a giant step forward in such a little time! Although there were almost no personel changes (only new drummer John Mayhew stepping in) the sound is so different from their debut it looks like it was made by another (and better) band; lyrics aside, of course (which, by the way, DID improve too). It is their first real step into prog music and quite a landmark piece in rock music. It did not sell much at the time, but it proved that Charisma label was right to sign them. The music is dark and obscure, still quite engaging and pleasant, a transitional album that would set the blueprint for greater things to come.

Although the production left much to be desired at the time, it did not hide the bandīs new power in terms of songwriting and performance. All the tracks are good in my opinion and this CD is more balanced and flows better than Nursery Cryme. The absolute highlight is The Knife, which set the pattern for the classic Genesis sound from then on. But all songs are remarkable.

Conclusion: an outstanding second album, one of progīs true gems and a must have for any prog fan. If not for the (poor) production, Iīd give it 5 stars, but still I rated Trespass 4,5 stars on the strength of their renewed perfomance and songwriting skills.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The birth GENESIS came as a result of Peter Gabriel's and Tony Banks' friendship,who were students at the Charterhouse school in Goldaming,UK.First album ''From genesis to revelation'' from 1969 consisted mainly of light keyboard-driven pop songs.Despite facing problems with the drummer's position,GENESIS moved on to a second album 1970 entitled ''Trespass''.The album presents a dramatic change in GENESIS' sound,the turn from pop/rock to somewhat ''difficult'' high-class rock.Led by the charismatic voice of Peter Gabriel,the self-confident performance of Mike Rutherford on bass,the delicate guitars of Anthony Phillips,the dramatic keyboards of Tony Banks and featuring John Mayhew on drums,GENESIS delivered amazing musicianship based on a mix of classic rock,folk music with light classical influences...''Trespass'' meant to be a classic of progressive rock history and the starting point of a decade filled with masterful releases by this legendary UK band. I absolutely love this release,though a 5 star rating would be excessive...So 4 shining stars for ''Trespass''.
Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Trespass" is the 2nd full-length studio album by UK pop/rock and progressive rock act Genesis. The album was released through "Charisma Records" in October 1970. Itīs the successor to "From Genesis to Revelation" from 1969 and features one lineup change since the predecessor as drummer Jonathan Silver has been replaced by John Mayhew. The debut album hadnīt given Genesis much success, and they wanted to expand their sound and be more creative, incorporating elements from classical music and folk to their core pop/rock sound. As a result "Trespass" is the first progressive rock album in Genesis discography.

While the material is both catchy, melodic, and memorable, the band have moved away from regular vers/chorus structures, and most tracks feature many sections and unconventional song structures. One of the most important features of the bandīs music in those days were the light/dark, loud/mellow songwriting approach. Several sections feature twin 12-string acoustic guitar playing, subdued melodic vocals, and a folk influenced melancholic atmosphere (including lead vocalist Peter Gabriel playing the flute), but the music can also be relatively hard rocking and energetic. The dark and heavy closing track "The Knife" is the best example of the latter style.

The 42:35 minutes long album features 6 tracks. Highlights are "Looking For Someone", "White Mountain", "Stagnation", and "The Knife". "Visions Of Angels" and "Dusk" are slightly less interesting, but they arenīt bad quality tracks. "Visions Of Angels" just features an odd uplifting mood, which doesnīt suit Genesis and "Dusk" is a type of mellow and folky acoustic track, that Genesis would excel in a do much better on subsequent releases. But there is definitely the blueprint on that track for future greatness.

One of the great assets of the bandīs sound is the voice, lyrics, and delivery of Peter Gabriel. Thereīs something magical about the way he is able to tell a story while singing. His function is a combined storyteller/singer role, and while others have done it both before and since, and some have done it well too, Gabriel is a rather unique character. Just listen to how he tells the tale of the epic battle between the two wolves (Fang and One-Eye) on "White Mountain". Personally I know I disappear into fairytale land whenever Gabriel opens his mouth an sings. This is pure audio magic...

"Trespass" feautures a sound production which is of a good quality for the time, but the drums could have sounded better. And if there is to be a slight point of critique it would be that Mayhew maybe wasnīt the most suitable drummer for Genesis and their music. He would leave soon though and be replaced by Phil Collins (in August 1970), who brought a completely different approach to rhythm and drumming with him. Guitarist and founding member Anthony Phillips was the first to leave though, as he wasnīt satisfied with the direction of the bandīs music, and because many of his songwriting ideas were rejected and therefore didnīt make it unto "Trespass". It took the band a while to find a suitable replacement but in late December 1970, they auditioned new guitarist Steve Hackett and he joined Genesis in January 1971.

As it stands "Trespass" is still a great progressive rock album and a sign of even greater things to come. Itīs a little immature in places and the band obviously still needed to refine some of their songwriting ideas and hone their skills, but overall itīs a high quality progressive rock album and a 3.5 - 4 star (75%) rating is fully deserved.

Review by progrules
4 stars In the eighties I bought all the vinyls of early Genesis to replace them in the nineties for the compacts. My first vinyl was Genesis live followed by this first real album by the Genesis we (almost) all love. I grew very fond of it which made me decide to buy all the rest later on. I will review this one song by song briefly because they are quite different in my perception.

1. Looking for someone. I always liked this opening song bringing me in the right mood. Real symphonic. 4,5 stars.

2. White mountain. Least track of the album to me. But still nice. 3,5 stars.

3. Visions of angels. Somewhat better than previous track. Also not really the best. 3,75 stars.

4. Stagnation. I always loved this one very much, it has a special place in my heart. Great atmosphere. 4,75 stars.

5. Dusk. Very good ballad, one of their best ever. 4,25 stars.

6. The Knife. A true classic by this band, another very symphonic track, great composition. 4,75 stars.

So that leaves a very clear score of 4,25 stars. Rounded down to well deserved 4 stars. Great "debut" and recommended to start with.

Review by Atavachron
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Absolutely gorgeous second record from these five, even without Mr. Hackett. And considering it was 1970, it is astounding. Really providing the finished blueprint here for what would be termed 'progressive rock', showing marked Lennon-McCartney inclinations but taken to an entirely new plateau of schooled musicianship with a rock heart that Yes and ELP hadn't yet fully solidified. The Crimson King's presence is also felt but this is a few leaps forward from that band's landmark debut. And the remaster sounds great, especially on the phones, the once bassy din now full and round instead. This was rock progressing in a big, pretentious, boldly sophisticated way and, musically speaking, makes ELP's first (also 1970) seem tame.

Peter Gabriel at his vocal peak starts 'Looking For Someone' showing inspired phrasing and poetic imagination, instantly becoming one of the great modern front men. Full-fledged symphonic rock here with all parts in place, a monumental piece of arranging and mixing for its time. 'White Mountain' is exactly that, Banks' mellotron shroud of fog crawling open and bassist Rutherford's shivering nylon string guitar, pastoral at times but colored by a theatrical darkness that artists such as Roger Waters would later begin imitating, filled with both stark and subtle changes. 'Visions of Angels' is huge and biblical, the group almost begging to be associated literally with their name, uplifting if grimly serious. But it is the fourth cut, 'Stagnation', that the band starts to get the lift that would carry them on to at least five more brilliant albums showing great dynamics and a seemingly endless supply of musical ideas. The very folk 'Dusk' is a weak point but not bad, and ironclad warship 'The Knife' is not to be messed with, bristling with gunnery, rusty barbs and Gabriel's political sarcasm. It is young symphonic rock at its best, wide-eyed, small but ready, and an unstoppable force soon to be a major player.

This may not be everyones favorite Genesis record but that's hardly the point, is it? At that moment there was nothing like it, and it advanced things in a way that bigger acts like Floyd, Jethro Tull and others were still years away from achieving. Hugely important, vital to the movement, 'Trespass' is often dismissed but is lushly musical and entirely essential.

Review by TGM: Orb
4 stars Review 8, Trespass, Genesis, 1970


A stunning progressive album, probably second (and maybe first) for me out of all of the classic period Genesis' efforts (behind SEBTP), even though it's not yet the 'classic' line-up. Here Gabriel's voice has taken on a soul-piercing edge that's never quite been rivaled (for me, at least) by his later vocals, Philips' guitar shifts between powerful and driving to the interplay characteristic of later Genesis. Banks has stepped up his choice of instruments and uses piano, organ or mellotron to fit the piece and the idea. Mayhew's drumming seems to be looked down upon, but I enjoy it anyway, and the production isn't great, but is good enough for me, as a non-audiophile. Lastly, a word for Mike Rutherford's bass and acoustics, which are great throughout.

Looking For Someone opens with moody organ and emotional vocals, moving up into searing guitar and drumming, perfectly conveying the search for order and meaning in the excellent lyrics. Banks' piano and organ are brilliantly used. The changes in mood are perfectly executed, and the use of the flute is better and more energetic here than on any other Genesis album. Perhaps the real charm (for me) of this album and this song in particular is that the music and lyrics actually evoke their subjects for me.

White Mountain was one of the two pieces responsible for getting me into Genesis (the other being One For The Vine), and from the mellotron-and-acoustic opening it really drags you into the cold, clear atmosphere it describes, reflecting both the adrenaline of the chase and the beauty, yet savagery of the environment. The drumming feels right, the organ touches are powerful, yet never too dominant, and Gabriel's voice is (again) unique, powerful and expressive, and the bleak and almost mourning ending doesn't break this. Classic song.

Visions of Angels does have choruses, but it's certainly not a pop song. Musically, it's the weakest track here, in my opinion, but emotionally it does as much for me as the others. The verses are beautiful, haunting and yet feel quite sharp, the lyrics are surreal and gripping ('Ice is moving and the world's begun to freeze/See the sunlight stopped and deadened by the breeze'), and for me, a very personal experience. Gabriel's vocal here is (just me talking) his best ever, the quiet mellotron moments are beautiful. The chorus, however, is just not at the same standard (perhaps 'too bombastic' or 'too frivolous' are the words to use. It's not bad in itself, but after the emotional build-up, it seems a bit blunt and unimaginative), and I've never been a huge fan of using harmonies in a chorus. It's an amazing song for me if I can switch off and listen purely on an emotional level, but I can't help occasionally thinking that the chorus on this is the moment that lets down the entire album.

Stagnation is long, and has relatively few vocals, which means that it takes a while to get used to, but I've at last acquired it, and I now actually really enjoy it. Again, the concept is pretty clear, intelligent and enjoyable, the lyrics are good, the vocals are good, and the changes are all done superbly. All of the components are good, but the end result, the haunting atmosphere and powerful music, is a real stunner. There's a lot of the guitar interplay that's present on The Musical box, the keyboards are generally clean and melodic, but vary a lot throughout the song, the drumming essentially takes a back seat here, except in the more 'rock' sections. One of the most forgotten prog epics, and one of the best.

Dusk is a quieter, shorter track with definite folk leanings, a mixture of Gabriel's voice and a harmony as the main , and a combination of guitars and chimes leading the music. After a couple of minutes of this, there's a minute of instrumental middle section which really doesn't hit the heights of the rest of this album, with atmospheric flute at one point. Thankfully, the return to the vocals prepares for a better end. This seems to be one of those pieces where (despite not being bad) the quality and variation really comes from the presence of the vocals and lyrics. Great, but not perfect.

The Knife. What to say? An absolute beast which leaves me wanting more. I almost wish that Genesis had explored the hard rock style evident here a little more. Gabriel's voice is gripping and powerful, perfectly exploring the strong lyrics. Rutherford's bass is superb. The distorted guitar riffs and organ work together in a mind-blowing fashion, with Mayhew's drums basically providing a backbone for the opening. A stunning first section moves into an inquisitive quiet part with excellent bass, guitar and flute, and occasional percussion in the background. Philips' guitar introduces the 'We are only wanting freedom' line, which is repeated to add even more power and tension and the screaming and background sirens really evoke the idea of revolution, of anger, of adrenaline. If there's a song that puts me in the mind of a battle, this is it. The build-up is amazing, the conclusion is powerful, and I even enjoy the much-maligned drumming: this song is a full-on hard/prog rock masterpiece.

Emotionally and personally, this album is a flawless five star. The ideas stand out, and the music essentially conveys them perfectly. Unfortunately, Visions of Angels and Dusk don't, for me, really stand up to scrutiny as masterpiece material. I love them when I'm not trying to pick holes in them, which is usually, but that's what distinguishes an amazing four star album from something I'd label as a general masterpiece.

Review by The T
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I reviewed GENESIS last albums almost a year ago. It's time to say a few words about their earlier (and better) recordings.

First time I heard Trespass I didn't like it that much. But now I can see why it's heralded as the band's first masterpiece.

The music is fantastic all the way through. Not only is the music progressive and elaborated, but it's also full of atmosphere and even some catchy tunes here and there. The album takes time to groew on you, but it definitely does.

Phillips' work is very close to that of Master Hackett, even though we can't find some of the magical solos and atmospheres that the latter gave us after he joined. Mayhew, on the other hand, is not in the same league as Phil Collins, and it was very healthy for the group to have added a better drummer after Trespass. It's not that the drumming is poor, but it's irrelevant, generic. Collins had a more distinct style which suited the band much better.

In my view, this album's star is Banks, whose keys really steal the show. Gabriel's voice starts to get weird and dramatic, theatrical, but his delivery is as pure as ever. The flute is used more than in future albums, so Gabriel had another chance to shine, which he managed to do.

The recording is very weak, even for 1970. There's a couple of tracks where a fade-out ending takes place even when the music doesn't call for it. it would get much better in the next records, though.

My favorite tracks are White Mountain (incredibly catchy for early GENESIS), Stagnation and The Knife. But all the album is a great piece of art and should be in every prog-fan's collection, especially if you like Symphonic-Rock, the genre where GENESIS has still not been surpassed.

Review by Garion81
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Here is where it all begins!

After the initial album Genesis took a whole different direction on this one. With only one song in the four minute range Genesis moved into the area of longer compositions and lush instrumental sections surrounding the core song. Using a lot of twelve string guitar and flute as well as organ to color the passages and Peter Gabriel's distinctive raspy voice to drive it forward Genesis hit a resounding chord.

The album has a lonely, melancholy feel to it and the music follows suit best represented in the opening track Looking for Someone. White Mountains rich and lovely guitar and flute parts contrasted by the bouncing chorus tell a story of a fight for wolf dominance that probably was connived over a couple of joints. Visions of Angles starts with a glimmer of hope in the music but the lyrics return us back to the melancholy of a love lost. This us bring us the most unusual song on the album Stagnation. Here Genesis start into their first epic. Starting with acoustic guitars supporting Gabriel's vocals the piece moves to a nice keyboard solo that leads us into an upbeat organ solo then back to a quiet vocal then rising up to angry climax to a ghostly sort of chant to end the song. Here it begins for Genesis. After that we have a nice little acoustic piece the shortest on the CD Dusk. Were back to the melancholy again with the beautiful twelve string and Gabriel's sad rasp almost a Moody Blues feel to this one. The anthem like The Knife close out the album with Genesis most powerful statement yet however John Mayhew's drumming shortcomings are pretty apparent here but that would be rectified with the next release. The song is an angry organ over an angry electric guitar and Gabriel's powerful voice "Tell me my life's about to begin Tell me that I'm a hero"

Not sure if Pete knew that Genesis was about to embark on a journey over the next 5 years that has encapsulated some of the most revered prog music ever. 4.5 stars

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
3 stars From 'From Genesis To Revelation' to Genesis-revelation

Even though From Genesis To Revelation was the first Genesis album, Trespass can be seen as the first real Genesis album. It was the first progressive one, anyway. It is harder to get into compared with many later Genesis albums, but over more listens I have grown to like it more than I used to. Indeed, The Knife is one of my favourite Genesis songs of all time. It rocks harder than anything else on this album. The rest is a bit more mellow. Such important members as Steve Hackett and Phil Collins had not yet joined the band at this time. Guitar duties being handled by Anthony Phillips (who, after having been replaced by Hackett, wouldn't be heard from at all until his solo debut in 1977).

Trespass certainly contains some very good music, but it is generally not up to the standards of what came after it. It is certainly not the place to start if you don't know Genesis.

For fans and collectors of Genesis (like myself) this is, of course, an essential addition. But for everyone else it is probably not.

A good album - no more, no less!

Review by poslednijat_colobar
3 stars Generally very weak album and very boring one!I listen to it only because I need to rank it here after that.I prefer to listen only The Knife and somewhat White Mountain.The musicianship is almost poor.There is a big progress than their first release,but this boys still have a lot to learn about music.The sound is poor and the songwriting is insignificant,the song are simple and boring from the first listening.Everything I said have one exception - The Knife.It is one of my favourite Genesis' songs and I don't know how it is possible a great song like this to be included in a poor album like this.I would give 2 stars,but I shall give 3 because of the good moments in White Mountain and Visions of Angels,and especially The Knife.
Review by Sinusoid
3 stars It's a beautiful album, but almost nothing beyond that. TRESPASS is a very airy, folksy album that is pretty different than the future classics other than the omnipresence of twelve-string guitar sections. While many progsters into pretty music might find this to be a pre-Genesis classic, I have to disagree. It's a very boring album.

The first three tracks are the most nondescript, sedated tracks to come out of the Genesis canon. It's perfect music for me to fall asleep to, not to listen at will. ''Stagnation'' is somehow an exception to this as a little life is pumped into the middle section, only to fall back to similar soundscapes in ''Dusk''.

''The Knife'' is the oddball track here, the only tune here other than parts of ''Stagnation'' I'm willing to get behind. Genesis goes insanely heavy here with distorted bass and biting organ, and the piece is filled with melodramatics. The middle gives the group breathing room before going on an all-out assault at the end. It's the intensity of a track such as ''The Knife'' that can turn a weak album into a decent/good one.

Review by J-Man
5 stars This is where proggy Genesis began. Their debut album From Genesis To Revelation was good for 1969, but not progressive at all in any right. This is where it really all began for Genesis. TRESPASS is the last album of Genesis with Anthony Phillips on guitar, and the last before their classic lineup in 1971 began. This is probably one of my favorite Genesis albums for tons of reasons. Not only is the recording quality some of the best for Genesis, Anthony Phillips guitars sound great, and it contains some of Peter Gabriel's best singing.


The album kicks off with Looking For Someone. This really is an overlooked gem. While Stagnation and The Knife are a little better, this is really underrated song that's an incredible opener to an incredible album. Next comes White Mountain, which is also underrated. I love the organ on this song, and the acoustic guitars are great too. Visions of Angels is a really beautiful piece with nice piano and superb singing. Stagnation is one of the best songs on the whole album. It is a short epic with a great ending. The song starts out acoustic, and slowly builds into an awesome theme at the end. Dusk is a short folk rock piece that I enjoy, but is mainly overlooked. The Knife is the closer to the album, and is really incredible. The organ sounds great, and I love how Peter Gabriel's voice is synthed. A great song, however I almost never listen to the studio version. Once you hear the live version, it's tough to go back to listen to this version for various reasons.

This is a must buy for any Genesis fan or just a prog fan in general. The only album in an era, and contains some of Genesis's masterpieces. Buy this mostly underrated gem, and you'll be very satisfied.

Review by Cesar Inca
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Trespass" was the real blooming moment for Genesis. After an interesting yet clearly underdeveloped debut album that at most revealed a band of youngsters aiming to bring a craft f beauty and stylization to rock music, Gabriel, Phillips, Rutherford, Banks and new coming drummer Mayhew made Genesis take a quantum jump into the realm of prog rock in order to deliver this beautiful album "Trespass". Sure it bears serious problems at the sound engineering department (I mean, the original mix), and it also fails to establish a more convincing pattern of powerful rock sounds through the artsy ambitions so habitual in the genre. There is yet another minus I find in this album, which is the lack of a softer handling of transitions among various motifs in some particular moments (a problem that was evidently managed better from the follow-up "Nursery Cryme" and eventually perfected in "Foxtrot"). And what about Mayhew's drumming style, which has been subject of retrospective criticism even by a Genesis veteran in some interviews? Well, I think that it is fine per se, but definitely there was a certain abuse of rolls and ornaments, which in turn reveals an underdeveloped conceptual clarification about the rhythm section's role in the band's framework (compare it to the sort of communication between Giles and Lake in KC's debut or between Sinclair and Coughlan in Caravan's. that's real clarification). Anyway, in general, this is beautiful musical work that in many places reveals the very essence of the band's autumnal side (quite prevalent in their 70s albums despite the fact that the guy became rockier right there from the "Nursery Cryme" days). 'Looking for Someone' brings a delightful set of epic passages, some subtle and other more explicitness, with a Gabriel that already shows his trademark as a dramatic teller of stories and emotions. The epic factor gets more vital in 'White Mountain', despite the fact that the electric guitar is less prominent in favor of multiple 12-string guitars: the main motif is developed with a majesty that stays pastoral and dynamic concurrently. This song encapsulates perfectly the autumnal aspect of Genesis that I was referring to earlier in this review. And maybe we can tell that this is the birth of the definitive 12-string guitar sound. 'Visions of Angels' takes a turn into a more romantic realm without loosing the epic edge - Banks brings the best of his symphonic vision for the enhancement of this Phillips-penned song. 'Stagnation' is very lyrical, with much room for passages on 3 12-string guitars, plus an organ solo and a bombastic closing section based on a lovely motif's reiteration. 'Dusk' is a typical Ant Phillips bucolic ballad, with heavy Renaissance undertones: the album does not get more autumnal than this. 'The Knife' is the only real rocker in the album, but what a rocker it is. You can describe this album as a peculiarly successful attempt at combining early King Crimson and Hendrix-like psychedelic rock. The message of civil war and the circle of dishonest politics meets an engaging expression in this dramatic rocker that can sound urgent and menacing at the same time, even during the constrained interlude that precedes sounds of street mayhem. This experiment went awesome, and it clearly generated a fund of enthusiasm for future rockers in successive albums. Not a masterpiece to my ears, but definitely an undisputed gem that states the birth of a prog hero of all times.
Review by lazland
4 stars Isn't it nice to revisit old favourites, especially where the story began? Ignoring To Revelation (easy to do), this is the first proper Genesis LP, and it is a blinder, remarkably fresh after 39 years.

I love Steve Hackett as a musician, but I also love Anthony Phillips' work, and he plays marvellously on this. If he had not had stage fright, imagine what Genesis would have sounded like.

However, the key to this, and all subsequent early LPs, is Gabriel's voice. Looking for Someone starts off with that trademark plaintive voice, seeking answers, Absolutely a remarkable vocal performance from someone barely out of school.

White Mountain is, to me, aan album filler, but Visions of Angels is the track that persuaded Charisma to sign the band, and it is easy to see why. The band, with Gabriel's haunting lyrics, and Banks' majestic keyboards, tell a story that yearns for something a little bit more than can be found on this mortal coil.

Many commentators remark that the oldest song Genesis perform these days is I Know What I Like, but this is not true - the exceptional keybord and vocal passage in Stagnation actually plays a part in the modern day medley, and it still sounds fantastic. Banks, Phillips, and Gabriel combine to terrific effect on a simple passage.

The Knife still resonates in the present day - an angry song about a demagog, it is years ahead of its time, inspiring countless others, especially Fish when writing Market Square Heroes in the eighties. I still remember with fondness Collins being shouted at in the eighties tours to play this song, and always refusing. Phillips' guitar work is incredible, and the volume and call to arms by Gabriel still raises hackles even now.

Some of you are going to die, martyrs of course, to the freedom I shall provide....This could easily be written in the tragic times we live in now, especially Palestine and Iraq.

Banks in the prog special on BBC 4 last night stated that it was the band's strength as songwriters that carried them through punk. He was right, and this LP was the start. The best, of course, was still to come!

Review by The Quiet One
5 stars For those who don't like Trespass, I throw you the Knife!

Genesis' second album was the first to represent what was going to come from them, definitely not as elaborated as future classics; Trespass will always remain special to Genesis' catalogue with Anthony's dominating 12-string guitar leading almost every song, together with Tony's subtle mellotron soars, and finally Peter's wonderful voice at it's peak.

As you may notice from the brief description I just did, this means that Anthony Phillips, Tony Banks and Peter Gabriel are the main characters in this album. Each of them giving their whole soul to this album:

Peter Gabriel shines in the melo-dramatic opener Looking For Someone, which only songs like Dancing with Moonlit Knight or Supper's Ready can beat it vocally. Looking for Someone also presents a heavy mood with some symphonic piano/organ melodies, for those Symphonic fans. The composition is one of the best in the album, reaching the heights of The Knife, while not in the instrumentation potential.

Then, Anthony Phillips shines in the fierceful The Knife with his powerful distorted electric guitar, never beaten by Steve Hackett, in that aspect. However The Knife does not only present Anthony shining, if not also Tony Banks with his mighty galloping-esque organ, while Peter has a chance to shine with his beautiful, though always short(in time), flute. The Knife, compositionally and instrumentally, is the best song on Trespass. However, if there's one song in this album that breaks the angelic mellow flow Trespass is all about, it's this one unfortunately.

Now to Tony Banks: he also gets to shine in, the heaven-made, Stagnation, with his mellow organ touches which will break through the chorus with a majestic and sweet, symphonic-flavoured, organ. Don't you think I forgot about Peter, yes Peter shines here as well, lyrically and vocally. To sum it up, Stagnation is a acoustic, symphonic flavoured, gem.

However don't get me wrong, White Mountain, Visions of Angels and Dusk are all lovely songs, they are mellow ones in the likes of Stagnation, however they are pretty simple in structure with few mood/time changes, however the three of them are the ones responsible of giving the mellow and beautiful overall aspect to the album. They are highly enjoyable with an ocassional standout bit from each member.

Trespass ends up being Genesis'(70-77) less Prog-focused album, but also ends up being Genesis most beautiful one. Not Genesis' best, musically it's below all other Gabriel-era albums, but that charming touch this album has is definitely a bonus which no other Genesis album has, and this bonus is really what makes this album so damn good.

Essential addition to your Genesis collection, Excellent addition to your Prog collection: Angelic Masterpiece from 1970!

Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This second album by Genesis (perhaps their first respectable release as a progressive rock act) gives an indication of where they would be going musically, but had this been their only album, they might have been comfortably a part of the progressive folk category. It is my opinion that Anthony Phillips would have been a highly suitable guitarist for this up-and-coming band, even though his replacement was more than worthy. John Mayhew likewise served the band well from behind the kit (in fact, in spite of the band's displeasure with him, I would be prepared to argue that Mayhew would have been better suited on Nursery Cryme than Phil Collins). The more permanent members are excellent in their respective performances, even if they outshine themselves many times over on future albums.

"Looking for Someone" Peter Gabriel's voice is the instrument of note here, and he sounds just as mature as he ever would, and immediately he demonstrates the prowess of his pipes. The musicians do not long tarry in showing their abilities either, even if a couple of them were not long for the world of Genesis.

"White Mountain" The guitars are very prominent here, as is Gabriel's aged-sounding voice. The lyrics here show the narrative-driven direction Genesis songs would take. Layers of guitars and organ dominate the impressive instrumental middle section. The names of the wolves come from Jack London's White Fang, but the stories have no resemblances otherwise. The title of the album is also taken from this song.

"Vision of Angels" Six-string acoustic guitar and soft vocals make up the verses, but the chorus is more potent. The lyrics seem to move between lovely optimism and angry pessimism.

"Stagnation" This blends progressive folk music with the Genesis sound more so than any song on this album. The acoustic guitar parts are beautiful, even if the vocals clip a time or two. The climactic ending is close to where Genesis would be- powerful and moving, with a flute and acoustic guitar section easing everything up- until the rest of the band enters.

"Dusk" As with many of the previous pieces, "Dusk" employs acoustic guitars and minimal percussion. The vocals on this song are some of my favorite from Genesis, both the lead and backup. The flute is spirited, as are the guitars. All in all, I find this to be one of the bands most overlooked tracks.

"The Knife" The crowning track of the album is heavier than everything that came before, eschewing the folk aspects and donning a robe of vigor. Tony Banks churns out some respectable organ playing. Mike Rutherford's bass thuds along and he throws in quite a few fills to make the music even more interesting. Gabriel's vocals are rather menacing, cloaked in effects as they are. Phillips keeps on the conservative side, even during his solo. Mayhew's drumming is probably at its best here. Overall, this is a sinister track (particularly right in the middle), but does give a slightly better idea of the direction early Genesis was taking.

Review by Negoba
4 stars The Beginning of a Beautiful Journey

Genesis' first album of their classic period (excluding their poppish debut under producer Jonathan King up until Peter Gabriel's departure), Trespass sometimes gets mentioned only as a predecessor of what is to come. However, I feel this album truly has a lot to offer on its own, and is an album I often reach for when I want my Genesis fix.

Trespass is sadly the only classic-era album to feature one of the originators of the Genesis sound, guitarist Anthony Phillips. Successor Steve Hackett took the ideas to new heights on later albums, but the fundamental sound (including 12 string arpeggiation, thick melodic lead tone, classical sensibilities) came from Phillips and the parts were taught to Hackett by bassist/guitarist Michael Rutherford. While Phillips would use more traditional pentatonic / bluesy tones at times, and Hackett used advanced techniques such as tapping and sweeps, the role and place for the guitar in the music is nearly identical. Phillips does employ acoustic textures a little more frequently than Hackett, which gives this album more pastoral flavor than any of Genesis' later works.

Singer Peter Gabriel gives excellent emotional performances on this album, though the grandiosity of his songwriting has yet to reach its peak. In fact, the whole band still exudes a sense of freshness, energy, and youth that transforms in later albums to more seasoned perfection. But there are some elements in this album that never appear again, specifically slightly more straight folk-rock sections, the aforementioned bluesy leads, and band harmony vocals (later interplay between Collins and Gabriel had a much different flavor, and in fact was actually fairly weak. It would not be until the final classic album with Carpet Crawlers that this formula would flower).

Most of the other reviews discuss the proto-epic Knife which of course is one of Genesis' classic songs. But just as much I enjoy the opener, Waiting for Someone, the multi-timbred Stagnation, and the acoustic pastiche Dusk, which points back to the debut album. The Knife actually sticks out on the album, as it is so much more aggressive and dark. Phillips' work is great, Gabriel is beginning to emerge in his full dramatic glory, and the whole band is indeed rocking. The drums, to me, are still solid, though it is perhaps the limits of the percussion work here that led to the recruitment of the fantastic Phil Collins behind the kit for future albums.

In all, Trespass is a great album, and is still essential Genesis. Though not one of their trio of masterpieces, I highly recommend it for anyone expanding beyond the basic canon of prog.

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Heavy Prog & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
4 stars I'm not sure why Trespass holds such a fond place in my heart. I discovered it relatively late in my Genesis path-I think And Then There Were Three had come out. Perhaps because I love twelve string guitars so much-especially those few musicians who chose to explore the 12-string as a picking, not just strumming, instrument (Anthony Phillips, some Jan Akkerman, John McLaughlin, Steve Hackett) The paring down of the holy quintet to a trio was leaving me less satisfied, I had been in love with Voyage of the Acolyte and The Geese and the Ghost for a while, so I decided to visit the "old" Genesis. (I had been familiar with the music through the Genesis Live LP but had never realized that Hackett had not been a part of the composition of those pieces.) So, Trespass and From Genesis to Revelation came to my possession by way of the cut-out bins.

1. "Looking for Someone" has some truly inventive sounds-especially vocally. The guts it takes to start an album with an emotional voice like that! Structurally, the song quilts together some very different and courageous musical sections, romping very quickly and often from soft to hard, pianissimo to forte. IMHO, Tony's organ work and Ant's lead work are weak and John Mayhew's one-style-fits-all drumming leave one less than engaged. Definitely progressive song composition, just not mature players yet. Or they're still struggling for their "sound." (P.S. Do my ears deceive me or is Ant's electric guitar out of tune?) A peak at the future but all potential, not enough realization. 4/10

2. "White Mountain," while somewhat weak in story, keyboards, and the less-than-up-to-the-task drumming, displays some masterful vocalizations and soul-blissing acoustic guitar work. The second movement with the ominous pounding of the bass drum and treated Gabriel vocals is a spine-tingling highlight! The brief Poe-like distant organ with human whistling is also very effective before the fadeout. 5/10

3. "Visions of Angels." I've heard Gabe say that this is one he would consider resurrecting were he ever to participate in a Genesis reunion concert. I guess he likes those uplifting mystical/spiritual songs he helped create (like "Supper's Ready"). Some of Mayhew's better drum work is here. Rutherford, the reluctant bass player, gets to shine a little with a little "lead" bass playing. "God gave up this world-it's people-long ago. Why She's never there I still don't understand" Perhaps this song continues to state an important piece of Gabe's credo. A fair, pretty straightforward song with nothing standing out much. 4/10

4. "Stagnation." Still one of my all-time favorite Genesis or any other music genre songs. That eerie synth solo over the 12- and 6-strings is phenomenal-I never tire of it; it never fails to produce goose bumps on my skin. Then to bridge into that awesome guitar-backed organ solo (with Mayhew's adequate drumming for once mixed properly!) Simply sublime! Then Gabe whisper-sings that frail, fragile invitation to us before waxing poetic with his treated description of the waterbank. "I-I-I-I-I, I-I-I-I-I,_I said I want to sit down! I want a drink." More Christ references? Awesome. 9/10

5. "Dusk." Acoustic guitars! Monastic voices! Flutes! A singular chime! Mellotron. NO DRUMS!! I'm in absolute heaven! A beautiful and subtly intricate song. 9/10

6. "The Knife." Many a progster's favorite early Genesis song. I must admit: the song very powerfully conveys the horror and fear of the Kent State/fascist state experience. Mayhew's machine gun-like drumming, Rutherford's deep distorted bass thrums and the first classic searing Genesis lead guitar solo (later taken up and mastered by Monsieur Hackett) coupled with Gabe's forceful German accent make for a very powerful song. (And who's saying that prog songs shouldn't have social-political content or meaning?) Still, somewhat unpolished and raw for a prog classic. (The Live version is better, don't you agree?) 7/10

6.33/10 = solid 3 stars, but "Stagnation," "Dusk" and "The Knife" make this album, IMHO, "an excellent addition to any prog rock music collection." Though still honing their sound and compositional style(s), this is a great sophomore effort for a band envisioning some truly ground-breaking and complicated musics. Four stars.

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Perhaps in my top 25

Trespass is a very special Genesis album. It is the only Genesis album which featured my favorite band line-up and if you look at the overall album rather than individual songs, I'm not sure they ever made a finer album. I can't overstate how important Anthony Phillips and Peter Gabriel are to my idea of the perfect Genesis. (After Lamb Genesis would fall several notches for me starting with the fairly weak Trick of the Tail.) While Steve Hackett and Phil Collins may have been technically more gifted than their predecessors, it is not technical savvy alone that makes great music. Trespass was the perfect marriage of youthful naivety, sentimentalism, band chemistry, and great songs. Everything comes together so perfectly here. After their debut, Genesis picked up their new drummer John Mayhew and gigged around working on new material and getting tight as a group. Mayhew is no Phil Collins in the technical sense but as I mentioned I welcome that. He gets the job done without overplaying and is perfectly adequate for this album. Much more important is the presence of Ant Phillips who is the heart and soul of Trespass. With his songwriting influences and gorgeous 12 string acoustic guitar playing, Trespass is awash in the same lush drapery that fills his later solo album The Geese and the Ghost. Ant is also a hugely underrated lead guitarist and his short solos and lead bursts are simply jaw dropping throughout. Gabriel is beyond fantastic with a youthful, soul-filled, passionate singing voice backed up by his significant flute passages, with probably more flute here than any other Genesis album. Released in 1970 Trespass caught Genesis up to Pink Floyd (Atom Heart Mother) in quality and while surging them ahead of Yes (Time and a Word) and King Crimson (Poseidon).

Musically Trespass is a feast for the ears and imagination, a celebration of times long gone, of medieval stories and myths. Ranging from softer acoustic sections to the aggressive rock of "The Knife," Trespass offers everything the Genesis fans needs but offers the extra delight of Phillips delicate touch and leadership. The youthful Gabriel is stunning in his intensity on "Looking for Someone." Listen to the way Banks and Phillips back up Pete during the early vocals, these gorgeous little runs dropped just perfectly, with an attention to detail every bit as effective as they would achieve on any of their higher rated albums. And I'd argue they are *more* musically pleasing on this one. Fantastic dramatic development and pastoral melodic grandeur are nearly non-stop throughout. "White Mountain" is all about mood sounding like an early lost Renaissance track. "Visions of Angels" is a leftover from the first album's sessions but was spruced up for inclusion here. It sounds very similar to the songs from the first YES album and is superb despite being noticeably different in feel from the other five songs here. Listen to the care Mayhew brings to the piece, there is certainly no reason whatsoever to feel shorted by Collins absence on Trespass. "Stagnation" was Tony Bank's favorite because it moved quickly from one passage to the next. It is perhaps the most elegant and mature piece of songwriting shifting between moods and styles. "Dusk" is a mellower favorite with lovely vocal harmonies and blended acoustic guitars over bell and flute. "Musical hot fudge" as my better half offered while we walked under the cold moon tonight talking about the album. And then comes "The Knife." Every bit as energetic and feisty as "Watcher of the Skies" or "Epping Forest" it is the transitional track from the calmer waters of Trespass to the increasingly more rocking albums ahead. Again, listening to the performances here I find Hackett having nothing over Phillips and Mayhew perfectly suited without any pretension.

Not only is Trespass a masterpiece in my book but I honestly think it may be the single finest Genesis album, at least if you are looking for heart. I think it really outperforms both Nursery Cryme and Foxtrot-both of those albums have some higher individual moments but also some lower ones. If you combined the best Cryme/Foxtrot moments you'd have another masterpiece, but compare the three side by side and I'll choose Trespass which is so much more alive! Give the new remaster a fresh listen and see if it doesn't capture your heart.

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars If only.

If only Anthony Phillips had stayed with the band. Although he had a lighter touch than his replacement, Steve Hackett, here, on the only symphonic prog Genesis album he appeared on, Phillips adds a texture to all of the songs that was missing on most of the Hackett albums. His finger picking and soloing are much more distinctive than Hackett could manage.

And I like John Mayhew's drumming on this album. His snare work and general style remind me of Michael Giles' work on the early King Crimson albums.

The songwriting is not as polished as on the upcoming albums, but it still has many shining moments. At many points, this sounds quite a bit like The Moody Blues albums of the time, helped in that effect by Peter Gabriel's flute, and vocal harmonies, without Phil Collins' Gabriel like voice, that sound eerily like their contemporaries.

The high point is The Knife a dark, powerful number with soaring guitar by Phillips, which outshines most of what the band will ever record later.

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This particular Genesis album has never really overwhelmed me. But I sure can see why it is highly praised. It has a unique atmosphere in Genesis' catalogue, pastoral yet dark, gentle yet vigorous. Given my recent breakthrough into more romantic styles, I can see this album growing on me in the next couple of years, even though I've known it for 25 years now.

The big plus points in favour of this album are the extensive use of flutes, organ and mellotron, giving this album its specific sound. I am not familiar with Anthony Philip's solo album, but his acoustic guitar picking throughout the album (eg on White Mountain) make me realize it's urgent time I give it a try. Generally, except for The Knife where he is very prominent, his presence is much more modest then Hackett's overwhelming guitars on later albums.

The compositions on the album are very strong and ambitious. This is an album from 1970, apart from King Crimson and VDGG, two obvious points of inspiration for this album, there wasn't much to copy. The result is an original sound inbetween King Crimson's pastoral moments (Talk To The Wind, Epitaph) and Van Der Graaf's forceful organ, drum & bass sound.

The only track that legs a bit behind the others would be Stagnation. The first half is excellent, but the heavier themes that take over afterwards sound less inspired. Dusk and The Knife are both stunning, in entirely different ways. They are poles apart, just like Talk To The Wind and Schizoid Man were on In the Court of the Crimson King

Not my favourite but anything less then 3 stars seems inappropriate for this symphonic prog landmark.

Review by friso
4 stars Genesis - Trespass (1970)

Finally a very positive Genesis review...

I owned this record for quite some time now, but until a month ago I hadn't listened to it seriously. Realizing this might be some interesting album (follow-up Nursery Cryme is my favourite Genesis) I took some time to get into the music and what a relief this was. Finally a Genesis record with drums I like! Somehow I'm the only one who is really disturbed by the inaccurate and awful recorded drums of Phil Collins. On Trespass John Mayhew plays drums and it really suits the music fine. Whilst he might not be as technical as Collins, his sound is ten times better. Only on the Knife some of his drum-patterns are a bit dull, but this is still acceptable.

This album is considered to be the first 'real' Genesis album, because of the totally different début. Everything is there: the dreamy symphonic soundscapes, the intelligent instrumental passages, the Hackettish upper-element guitar sound and ofcourse the lyrics and vocals of mister Peter Gabriel. His vocals sound particularly well on this album as he sings intimate, aggressive and angelic. The compositions on the album are not as complicated as on Nursery Cryme, but don't be mistaken: this is still better then 95% of all symphonic prog around! The chord progressions are with the recognisable modulations, giving it that magical harmonic sophisticated sound.

Side one has three songs of exactly seven point zero zero minutes, side two has two longer tracks of almost nine minutes and one shorter track of four minutes, which could be seen as the hit-potential song. This is no record with stand-out tracks: all tracks are of high quality, memorable and I would want to miss one of them. As said the shorter track could have been considered radio friendly, but this is no ordinary pop-song: this is still top-notch prog with acoustic arrangements and nice tension-building in the refrain. The final track The Knife is the fastest song on the album and has that nice up-tempo prog feel. The Knife is the most spectacular (not per se best) song on the album and it wouldn't have been a misfit on Nursery Cryme or Foxtrot.

Conclusion. This album is one big promising victory march. It is one of the most important and innovative prog-albums of the seventies. Genesis found a great formula which would be perfected on the next album. A very very big four stars for Trespass.

Review by Flucktrot
3 stars In Trespass, the genesis of Genesis, we have a preview of the kind of music the band would later be known for, but not of the quality. In fact, in many ways, it's hard for me to hear the same band in both Trespass and Selling England. Different personnel surely account for some of that, but perhaps different maturity levels and sophistication account for more.

At first, I was like many here, as I immediately liked Knife and found much of the rest of the album soothing but fairly uninteresting. I thought that would change, but it hasn't. It's definitely prog, and it gets an A for effort, but the dots have not been connected enough to really pull me in, whether it's the muddy organ and vocal here (i.e., Looking for Someone) or the extended periods of little happening there (Stagnation). White Mountain and Visions of Angels offer interesting stories and bursts of energy that also hint at future glory.

In Knife, Genesis rock more, are more concise (packing more material into a shorter space), and play with a bit of an edge that's lacking in the rest of the album. I'm glad that they picked up right where they left off in this song with The Musical Box on Nursery Cryme. Overall, I enjoy this album more from a look-how-far-they've-come perspective than for pure enjoyment of the music. Impressive in ambition and innovation for a debut, but only a hint at the greatness to come.

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars After the quiet breeze there is a hailstorm of chaotic drums, a thunderclap of stormy distorted organ and soaring guitar solos, with an injection of venomous, sniping vocals.

"Trespass" is the first album from Genesis since they parted with Jonathan King and Decca labels to pursue a more distinct sound, that of the 'pastoral English idyll'. The album features some of the first use of Multi-tracked 12-string acoustic guitars that are blended with folky vocal harmonies, quiet flute, acoustic piano, and gentle keyboard pads on the Hammond and mellotron. It begins with an isolated secluded atmosphere in the form of 'Looking For Someone' that is certainly not a sound the band would return to on subsequent albums. The band were very unsure at times of their sound Anthony Phillips holds back on guitar preferring an acoustic approach, John Mayhew gently touched his drums, Peter Gabriel is quiet and calm, Mike Rutherford maintains simple basslines, Tony Banks prefers a subtle keyboard motif - all this of course is transformed into glorious prog chaos on the last track.

'White Mountain' is a Gabriel driven storytelling work with lyrics that would typify the Gabriel-era Genesis; "Thin hung the web like a trap in a cage, The fox lay asleep in his lair. Fangs frantic paws told the tale of his sin, Far off the chase shrieked revenge. Outcast he trespassed where no wolf may tread, The last sacred haunt of the dead. He learnt of a truth which only one wolf may know, The sceptre and crown of a king. Howling for blood, one-eye leads on the pack, Plunging through forest and snowstorm." Gabriel was perhaps inspired by Rudyard Kipling in this quirky tale of two wolves battling for a mystical crown. The music peaks at the end of each verse and slows into the pastoral English feel, Gabriel's voice is even fed through a machine echo effect at one point. The rhythm is maintained during the verse, with Gabriel part of the rhythm. The quieter moments of the song are characterised by flute and acoustic flourishes. The mellotron builds a cathedral atmosphere in the break. A wonderful song from the album characterising a new sound akin to Canterbury but still distinctive.

'Visions of Angels' is a softer track with some staccato moments and grinding organ and angel harmonies. The softer moments of the track are almost like a fairy tale and then there is a darker razor edge to the music with some ethereal piano and mellotron. The flute lends it's folky pastoral quality to the piece. Gabriel has a phased effect on his voice in one section, abut he is master of the storyteller style and once again he dominates the track: "Visions of angels all around, Dance in the sky, Leaving me here, Forever goodbye."

'Stagnation' is acoustically driven and has a soft Gabriel vocal and a lilting melody that goes nowhere and is a folk soaked passage of estranged lyrics and atmospherics. The guitar is well executed here picking style and a chiming keyboard adds a mystical quality with descending shapes and chilling notes pulled down the scale almost ghostly. The other worldly sound builds with an electrifying instrumental passage capitalising on organ and a quick tempo beat with basslines and drums adding the metrical pattern. The flute shines on this when Gabriel sings gently: "Wait, there still is time for washing in the pool, Wash away the past. Moon, my long-lost friend is smiling from above, Smiling at my tears. Come well walk the path to take us to my home, Keep outside the night. The ice-cold knife has come to decorate the dead, Somehow. And each will find a home, And there will still be time, For loving my friend, you are there..." It even sounds like The Moody Blues at one point. The rhythm builds again and Gabriel ad libs all sorts of nonsense to end this, "I want a drink, I want a drink, To wash out the filth that is deep in my guts, I want a drink." The flute returns over a clean guitar sound that has that distinct pastoral quality. Once again an underrated track from this horrendously underrated album.

'Dusk' is a very gentle calming track with some strange harmonies that remind me of early Pink Floyd or The Moody Blues. The lyrics are as whimsical as ever; "Once Jesus suffered, Heaven could not see him. And now my ship is sinking, The captain stands alone. A pawn on a chessboard, A false move by God will now destroy me, But wait, on the horizon, A new dawn seems to be rising, Never to recall this passerby, born to die."

There are bell chimes and a loaded flute that is played beautifully by Gabriel, adding a unique atmosphere, very tranquil and dreamy. The acoustic is once again a main factor and there are heavy crashes of piano. Not too bad but only a shadow of the next track which is a bonafide classic.

'The Knife' is a real fish out of water here, the most famous track on the album beginning with a staccato Hammond worthy of Emerson and in fact Keith was impressed with the sound and let the band know it. Gabriel was quite attracted with The Nice and the song 'Rondo' and in trying to capture this sound came up with a track that would typify the Genesis sound on their next album "Nursery Cryme". The Hammond and one note fuzz bass intro this excellent prog exploration.

The lyrics are a real point of interest and Gabriel frighteningly sneers his way through them with utter conviction; "Stand up and fight, for you know we are right, We will strike at the lies, That have spread like disease through our minds. Soon we'll have won and we'll treasure this worth, With our winnings and kindness To all who our love now deserve, Some of you are going to die, Martyrs, of course, to the freedom I will provide." The song's lyrics focus on Gabriel's reflections on violent revolutions, and the lyrics determine to explore how those who use violence all in the name of freedom are often the ones who actually establish their own dictatorship.

In the mid section the dark Hammond sound ceases and a bass booms with a violining guitar created by volume swells, and then a lilting haunting flute, subtle cymbal clangs on the ride cymbal and a beautiful keyboard pad providing a dark ambience. Then a fuzzed electric guitar is heard with Rutherford's fuzz bass, an off kilter chord structure, and phased vocals chant with a tape loop of screaming and voices, the birth pangs of prog are right here. The guitars have a chance to launch into flight with some of the best work from Anthony Phillips.

After you have been lulled to sleep by all the gentle pastoralness of the previous tracks with their one note bass passages and dreamscape instrumentals you are suddenly jolted back to life with 'The Knife'. After the quiet breeze there is a hailstorm of chaotic drums, a thunderclap of stormy distorted organ and soaring guitar solos, with an injection of venomous, sniping vocals. It is not for nothing that this song closed the Genesis set for years after and is the only track fans want to talk about from 'Trespass'. The song in fact trespasses across the green fields and sets fire to them. The firestorm is a mixture of chemicals fuelled by psychedelic guitar passages, crunching fuzz bass, and blazing Hammond.

The dynamic nuances are augmented by psychotic lyrics; "I'll give you the names of those you must kill, Then have all burned and quickly, Cover them up in Trafalgar square, Hurry to see, you'll see them dead In this ugly world, Ready to fight for your freedom, Now, when I give a word, Hang 'em on high, let the blood flow..." The disturbing lyrics are enhanced by massive stabs of Hammond and gut wrenching guitar riffs but the fuzz bass is so entrenched upon the sound that it is as heavy as the band would get. An absolute masterpiece of prog.

In conclusion it would be unrealistic that I rate this anything more than 3 stars as the greatness of Genesis was yet to come. But this is still a solid slice of early prog and 'The Knife' is an outstanding track, one of the essential blasts of creativity from the Gabriel era. The knife stabbed in the album cover signifies that the band are slicing their ties with commercialism and dragging across a blade to usher in a new progressive sound that would become symphonic prog. It is interesting to note that the album cover has a pastoral feel with religious overtones, a couple stare lovingly out the arch toward the distant horizon and a cupid creature dances merrily in the foreground, but the knife stabbed in the back gatefold is like the stab in the heart of the pastoral idyll, the way 'The Knife' stabs in at the end of the album, infiltrating the quiet atmosphere, almost tacked on as an afterthought is intriguing; it is one thing to swim against the flow but here the goldfish has jumped out of the bowl. Perhaps the band were experimenting, and trying to ascertain what would happen if they pulled out all the stops and attempted a 'Rondo'. The result was a success and opened the floodgates for a prog sound like no other in the years to come. Overall, the album is a genuine curio showing the birth of a band that is ready to catapult into the progosphere with their next adventure, the awesome "Nursery Cryme".

Review by seventhsojourn
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Before Anthony Phillips quit through chronic stage fright, and before John Mayhew was sacked for his supposed lack of creativity, Genesis recorded this fine album. The short songs format of the first album has been ditched and in its stead are six extended tracks, complete with complex instrumental passages. The album is saturated with richly textured 12-string guitars and Tony Banks' distinctive organ that together accentuate the pastoral nature of most of the songs. Trespass was the band's first album for Charisma and was, for me, the first real Genesis album. It sounds a bit on the raw side with some rather muggy production, but I feel this enhances the dark, at times melancholic nature of the album.

No criticism intended but the sacking of Mayhew shows how ruthless the core members of Genesis were (he was the band's third drummer already). By all accounts Mayhew was considered a solid enough drummer, but he was also rather passive and couldn't provide the kind of input the band wanted. Later events obviously showed that Genesis made the right decision in replacing him and, judging by interviews I've read, Mayhew himself seems to have been quite pragmatic about that decision. Sadly he died only last year, having spent his last five years working as a carpenter in my hometown of Glasgow. Trespass is surely a fitting legacy.

Trespass reveals Genesis as a band on a steep learning curve and it successfully laid the foundations for the band's future classic recordings.

Review by Chicapah
4 stars Even though a few of my friends were fans, it wasn't until early in '76 that I finally gave Genesis a fair listen (Yes hung the moon as far as I was concerned). I was between bands, questioning my life's direction and working at the flagship record store of the Sound Warehouse chain. One day the manager plopped the brand new "A Trick of the Tail" LP on the turntable. The delicious "Dance on a Volcano" blasted through the building like a force of nature. I became more and more impressed as the album played through. I was hooked and wanted more. She also turned me on to "Selling England by the Pound" and that got me started on collecting their backlog. But, despite the high quality of songwriting that "Nursery Cryme," "Foxtrot," "Genesis Live" and "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway" held between their grooves, each one suffered from such bad production that I never had the urge to travel any farther back. When I sprang for the expensive "Archives 1967-1975" compilation some time ago the disc that featured a slew of their early demos seemed so amateurish it further convinced me that "Trespass" would be a waste of money. My bad. I recently picked up a pristine vinyl copy for $7.98 and soon realized that for forty years I've ignorantly missed out on a splendid album that's quite unlike any of their others.

It turns out that the lineup sporting the talents of Gabriel, Rutherford, Banks, Phillips and Mayhew is nothing to scoff at. For five guys barely out of their teens this is an extraordinarily mature offering. They really had a unique blend of acoustic and electric instrumentation going for them and it makes me wonder where they would've ventured if they'd stayed intact. The aforementioned albums that were to follow this one certainly had their admirable merits but in every case they were poorly executed and/or engineered, especially in comparison with the way this one sounds. Rarely have I been so surprised.

Starting with Peter's raspy yet sublimely emotional voice towering over Tony's subdued Hammond organ for the intro to "Looking for Someone" doesn't hurt. The music never overwhelms the vocal (something that cruelly plagued "Cryme" mercilessly) and the adroit attention they paid to dynamics on this cut (and all of them, for that matter) makes it stand out noticeably. I'll admit that John's drumming is loose and slightly distracting but that's only until they get to a more energetic passage halfway through the song. I love how they avoid the pitfall of getting carried away with their enthusiasm and allow the tune to breathe and grow on its own. They never lose sight of the big picture. Lyrically they tend to be a little too sweetly poetic for their own good but that's just a reflection of their youthful idealism more than a lack of ability. Still, lines like "Nobody needs to discover me, I'm back again/you see the sunlight through the trees to keep you warm/in peaceful shades of green/yet in the darkness of my mind Damascus wasn't far behind" aren't patronizing at all and they definitely fit the aural mood they fashioned so well.

"White Mountain" has a cool, mysterious fade-in and Anthony's acoustic 12-string work is delicate and masterful in its execution. As before, they employ tactful ups and downs in volume to hold the listener's interest and the number's haunting finale is inspired. "Visions of Angels" begins with Banks showcasing his impressive skill on the grand piano and the way the different instruments intertwine without becoming tangled up in each other is indicative of the time and effort they undoubtedly put into arranging the piece. Gabriel's delivery of the overly-perfumed words ("As the leaves will crumble so will fall my love/for the fragile beauty of our lives must fade") is a great example of his controlled passion and Mike's bass performance in particular is excellently understated at the end.

"Stagnation" is the apex of the album. I'm particularly wowed at this juncture by their being able to maintain a consistent atmosphere without allowing all the songs to start sounding the same. (Not an easy achievement for any group at any stage of their career.) Phillips' gorgeous, ringing 12-string guitar chords invigorate the tune's momentum and Tony's offbeat approach to playing the Mellotron adds a pleasant dimension to the track. His signature organ technique makes it difficult to mistake him for any other keyboard man, as well. The 2nd part of the composition encompasses what progressive rock was all about in those exploratory days (don't get me wrong, it still holds up brilliantly today) as they build steadily to a stately, gallant climax. Peter manages to make obtuse lines as in "And I will wait forever, beside the silent mirror/and fish for bitter minnows amongst the weeds and slimy water" work in spite of themselves.

"Dusk" is a quiet gem. Its peaceful beginning with Gabriel crooning atop layered acoustic guitars is lovely. "A pawn on the chessboard/a false move by God will now destroy me/but wait, on the horizon/a new dawn seems to be rising/never to recall this passerby, born to die," he sings with his heart on his sleeve. Mayhew's drums are kept relatively low in the mix throughout the album and here they wisely leave him out completely. "The Knife" served notice that they weren't a bunch of cream puffs playing pretty melodies to fair maidens. Its loping rock beat on the verses was unorthodox for its time but it succeeded in separating them from the hard rock herd that surrounded them in the crowded marketplace. The alternating section of the verses is punchy and engaging. Still, they have the presence of mind to drop suddenly into an ethereal instrumental movement that slowly evolves into a Pink Floyd-ish collage of spoken snippets before entering into an edgier and somewhat brittle guitar solo from Anthony (this is where his successor, Steve Hackett, would really outdo him). The epic's antiwar sentiment is timeless and Peter delivers it with suitable angst. "Stand up and fight, for you know we are right/we must strike at the lies that have spread like disease through our minds/soon we'll have power, every soldier will rest/and we'll spread our kindness to all who our love now deserve/some of you are going to die/martyrs of course to the freedom that I shall provide," he snarls. The noisy ending is a bit frantic for my taste but I'm positive it made for a spectacular concert finale.

This is a fine, entertaining record, all things considered (especially when acknowledging their level of experience). Now I understand why "Trespass" is so highly regarded by so many. It has an undeniable charm that's hard to come by and that rare characteristic should be treasured by all proggers. I'm truly embarrassed to have neglected it for so long but I'm glad I finally discovered it even if it's four decades down the line. Better late than never. 4.2 stars.

Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Let's commence this week of Genesis music extravaganza on a highlight, even though it's difficult to find a single weak moment in this quintets discography!

I've alway been surprised by negative comments Trespass had received in the mainstream media since it's easily 1970's best album release for me. It's true that prog fans have been a bit nicer to album, after all it's Genesis we're talking about here, still there are only few who dare to proclaim it a complete masterpiece and instead spare their 5-star ratings until they get to Nursery Cryme or Foxtrot. That just seems unfair to me considering that those two albums and Trespass have just as much connection as all these albums have with say The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway!

Yes, the Symphonic Prog elements are a tad underdeveloped here but that doesn't really bother me a bit since this album isn't meant to be symphonic, it's meant to be hypnotic! Trespass is a Prog Folk album if I've ever heard one. The majestic album opener Looking For Someone and concluding The Knife do feature a few strong classic passages that Genesis would work on in the future, but the remaining four compositions are almost entirely an acoustic affair, and a steamy one at that!

Everything from the amazing album opening, where Gabriel wastes no time and starts the album with lyrics "Looking for someone/I guess I'm doing that/Trying to find a memory in a dark room/Dirty man, you're looking like Buddha I know you well - yeah!". What follows are two equally impressive performances, White Mountain and Visions Of Angels, both demonstrating that Genesis had come a long way since their debut, merely a year earlier.

Stagnation and Dusk is where the album gets into a completely acoustic territory and the band actually take a stab at their first concept composition with the former. Finally we also have The Knife, a composition that deserves a whole review on its own merits! A concept performance that can almost be considered a mini play staged in three acts. Musically it's a complete masterpiece, with Tony Banks completely stealing the show for me with his upbeat arrangement. Still it's the great band effort that makes this particular composition stand out more than anything that Genesis had done up to that point. The final act of this 9 minute composition might seem to be a tad imprecise in its conclusion, which is something that Peter Gabriel will use to his advantage many times again, and I usually see it as a very tragic ending, even though someone shouts "We have won"!

I highly recommend this album to everyone who is even merely interested in Genesis. It might not be the best debut album of all time, actually it's not even a debut album to begin with. Still it's definitely my favorite so called transitional album of all time! I'm have always been completely amazed by the change in the Genesis sound here and more changes were soon to come!

***** star songs: Looking For Someone (7:07) White Mountain (6:45) The Knife (8:57)

**** star songs: Visions Of Angels (6:51) Stagnation (8:51) Dusk (4:13)

Review by m2thek
3 stars When considering classic-era Genesis' albums, Trespass, their second album released in 1970, is often forgotten or overlooked. While it doesn't have the same level of craft, or as many exciting moments as the band's future outputs, Trespass is still an enjoyable album, that should definitely interest fans who have already made their way through Genesis' 70's catalogue.

Discovering Trespass has been a wonderful experience for me over the past week. Genesis has been my favorite band since I discovered progressive rock over two years ago, and as a result, I've memorized every note on those classic albums, to the point where I rarely listen to them anymore. But with Trespass, everything is new and exciting again, and it's like I'm finding my favorite band for the first time all over again. Though recognizable from the first note, there is a distinct sound to this album. This is probably Genesis' most folk-sounding album, with flute on nearly every song, more acoustic guitars, and organ being the most prominent keyboard. Minus Phil Collins and Steve Hackett, all of the ingredients are here: Peter Gabriel's characteristic vocals, melodic organ and piano passages, and well composed songs.

While Trespass has glimpses of brilliance, and signs of what was to come, the music is not as mature, even when compared to the next year. Gabriel's voice, while still emotional, and having its moments, had not yet developed fully, and is even weak at points. The songwriting as well, is not as finely tuned, with some buildups that aren't as satisfying as they could be, and occasionally sloppy transitions. Trespass certainly has great passages, particularly in Looking for Someone and The Knife, each of which is exciting and dynamic. The sound overall is very consistent, with each song fitting in with the album, but the high points are not as numerous, nor as exciting as Genesis would go on to make.

Unfortunately, it's difficult to review albums like this in a vacuum. If Genesis had for some reason stopped here, this would no doubt be a much more regarded piece of music. However, we know when listening to it what the band was capable of, and though they hint at it, they never quite realize their potential. Regardless of how this fits into the overall Genesis scheme, Trespass is a good album, but you should let this one stay on the backburner while you work through their later work.

Review by colorofmoney91
3 stars Trespass is the album where Genesis was starting to discover what their voice was in the progressive rock world. I always considered this album to have a stronger rock element than on later releases, although it really isn't too significant. Also, along with later releases, there is a proportional great/not-so-much quality tracks.

"Looking for Someone" starts the album off kind of weak. It seems very ill-thought out, but still manages to sound like classic Genesis. The instrumentation is a big confused sounding and the changes of mood are kind of random. But the track does follow a nice beat to get me through it. Honestly, I can't find anything that stands out on this track at all.

"White Mountain" starts out beautifully and kind of reminds me of a kind of gypsy mountain-folk inspired tune (I don't even know if that is a real "thing"). But the pace picks up and there is nice keys playing and powerful acoustic guitar strumming/picking that really sets this track on a good foot. This whole track is incredible and I'm honestly surprised that more people don't talk about this as being one of their best; I consider it so. There is a drum/bass pulsing just after the center that images a beast walking down a long hall, just before continuing with the powerful keys playing.

"Visions of Angels" initially sounds folky but soon becomes powerful and random. I consider this to be one of the more random tracks on the album and it doesn't work very well for me. There really is no coherent structure to this song even though there is a recurring theme that is stamped throughout.

"Stagnation" is mostly a symphonic folk-rock tune that is really quite beautiful. It gets bigger at the end, but mostly consists of acoustic guitar picking and some soothing melodies on the keys. There is a flute solo at the end that always sounds pleasant and really matches the rest of the song.

"Dusk" is another folky tune with group vocals and beautiful flute. Though this is one of the shortest and least progressive tracks on this album, it shows that the band really can write great songs that flow incredibly. I consider this a stand out moment along with "White Mountain".

"The Knife" is one of Genesis' classic tracks, and starts off heavily in a way that foreshadows "Get 'em Out by Friday" on the Foxtrot album. This track is very demanding and angry, emphasizing the "rock" half of progressive rock. It chills out near the middle and eventually gets groovy, but unfortunately nothing really stands out to me other than the song sounds different than anything else on the album.

A lot of fans regard this album as not being superior as Nursery Cryme or Foxtrot, but I disagree on my own personal taste. I think the folky elements on this album really make this stand out in the early Genesis catalog. I also prefer this album because the feel seems much more serious than the often goofy and quirky later albums. The album contains a few tracks that aren't written quite as well as they could've been, but there are also some very beautiful tracks here that are always pleasant to listen to.

Review by Warthur
5 stars The first "true" Genesis album (their actual debut having been disowned by the band, and having an entirely different style) shows that, even before the arrival of Steve Hackett and Phil Collins, the band managed to not only progressive pioneers but masters of establishing their own distinctive atmosphere. (It's this latter knack that I think the better neo-prog Genesis imitators succeed at.) Much of the album has the much-vaunted "pastoral" atmosphere associated with the band in heavier doses than on any subsequent album - perhaps due to the presence of Anthony Phillips on guitar, who tends to have a somewhat gentler touch than Steve Hackett. The exception is the closer, The Knife, which sounds less like a pastoral idyll and more like a dystopian riot (which is exactly the atmosphere it intends to present).

The album is unfortunately afflicted with somewhat murky production qualities in many issues, which for some time meant that it ranked quite low in my personal estimation. It's grown on me over the years, and the most recent remasters really do a great job of teasing out its finer qualities; moreover, I think the slightly naive production quality in some respects adds to its charm, and it's certainly one that rewards repeated listens. Emerging from the murk, if you show patience, come five tracks in a primordial pastoral style that Genesis would never wholeheartedly return to - a gentler, quieter, and more subtle vision of the band - and The Knife itself, which paved the way for future Genesis bombast. I certainly don't think any Genesis collection should be without it.

Review by baz91
4 stars A very different Genesis album

If it weren't for Peter Gabriel's distinctive vocals, you'd have a hard time believing that this album came from the legendary Genesis. Contrary to the aggressive, in-your-face prog the band would visit on later albums, the music here is very pastoral and gentle, without being dull. This may be explained by the fact that Messrs Hackett and Collins were not on board yet, and had not brought their sound to the group. Instead, we hear the wonderful Anthony Phillips on guitar, and the relatively obscure, yet still technically competent John Mayhew on drums.

The songs on here are all relatively long, especially when compared to the band's first album 'From Genesis To Revelation'; the average song length is roughly 7 minutes. Although mainly falling into the folky territory, each song is quite individual, and it's worth writing a couple of sentences about them all.

The album opener, Looking For Someone, has a very bizarre song structure, making it worth listening to a few times, as you're unlikely to understand it the first time round. With a lot of strong hooks and riffs, and an awesome 2― minute instrumental outro, this is actually quite a brilliant song.

A lot of people rave about White Mountain, but this is actually one of my least favourite tracks on the record. It tells the story of a wolf named Fang. This song has a good structure, but the arrangements in this piece are just too underwhelming. Towards the end of the song the band stops, leaving the sound of an organ and somebody whistling, creating tension. This seems like its going to end in a big crashing finale, but instead we hear the main riff repeated on the guitar, and some humming over the top of it: very dissatisfying.

Visions of Angels is far better. Strong drums and good melodies are the foundation for this track. The powerful, mellotron-drenched, instrumental towards the centre, which is repeated at the end, is definitely the best part of this song. With great lyrics to match, this is a neat little track.

Although The Knife is certainly the standout track on this record, Stagnation feels more like it belongs on 'Trespass' and emerges as the album's one true epic. The dynamics of this track are absolutely marvellous. At one moment, the song have a gentle and folky feel, but within a few seconds it will become more powerful and rocky. The lyrics are brilliant too, at times being subtle and subdued, and at other times bold and stark. This song is extremely different to Genesis's later epics, such as The Musical Box and Firth of Fifth, but deserves just as much recognition.

Dusk is a brief acoustic track. Despite having a beautiful flute solo from Gabriel, this track is really filler. There's really not much else to say about this track.

If Dusk (or indeed the rest of the album) had sent you to sleep, then The Knife would certainly wake you up. This track would more accurately predict the musical future of the band. As the name suggests, this is quite an aggressive track. Although using heavier arrangements than heard throughout the rest of the album, the first 3 minutes of the track feel quite light-hearted, with fast-paced lyrics that tell stories of war. However, the song takes a more serious turn at the 3 minute mark, beginning with a flute solo over a pulsating bass chord. After some haunting chants of 'We are only wanting freedom', the song's main instrumental begins. And what an instrumental it is! In my opinion, The Knife has the best guitar solo of any Genesis song, one that makes this reviewer want to stand up and bust out an air guitar solo to match. You can talk to me until you're blue in the face about Steve Hackett and Firth of Fifth, but no other Genesis track can make me want to shred on an instrument of nitrogen and oxygen like this one. After the guitar solo, comes an amazing blast of heavy rhythmic notes, a technique which has become a bit of a prog cliché. The song ends with one more chorus, before coming to an appropriately loud climax. Although it is wholly unrepresentative of this album, The Knife is far and away the best thing on this record.

I must admit, I do like the artwork for this album. A half-finished painting slashed horizontally by a realistic knife is a very bold and memorable thing to have as an album cover. The artwork is by Paul Whitehead, who would go on to design the covers to both 'Nursery Cryme' and 'Foxtrot', before moving to the US in 1973.

'Trespass' shows an evolving band exploring new territories. This is a wonderful record indeed, although unfortunately not brilliant. This is not the place to start with Genesis, as the band's sound would change considerably in the following years. To all those who have begun listening to the band, however, I thoroughly recommend this as one of Genesis's most consistent and entertaining albums.

Review by Matti
5 stars (Can't help that the length of this page - 179 reviews - makes me feel awkward to make it longer, but this once I let myself to write about THE key band of my prog history! I'll keep it short - if I can.) First, what a progress from the naive debut with lousy string arrangements courtesy of Jonathan King. Not that it wouldn't have *some* merit, but honestly the prog legend starts right here. The line-up still misses Steve Hackett and Phil Collins who both appear for Nursery Cryme, but that fact - in other words, the presence of Anthony Philips - only increases the uniqueness of Trespass. I believe that also without line-up changes Genesis would have become a leading prog band, judged by this album. But as we know, Phillips decided to leave due to stage fright, and released his first, very Genesis-reminding solo album no sooner than in 1977.

Six songs in 42― minutes and all of them strong. They were influenced and inspired by In the Court of the Crimson King (1969) and decided to make progressive rock as ambitious artistically as that seminal album - without sounding the same. They got John Anthony as the producer, who (if I remember right) had already worked with the Charisma label mates Van Der Graaf Generator. The result is an underrated masterpiece, overshadowed by Genesis' later achievements. It is angrily complex one moment and beautifully pastoral the next, but all the way the compositions are very mature. Sound quality is not perfect - nor is it on Nursery Cryme - but that certain worn-out feel (in balance with the Paul Whitehead cover art!) fits the music.

As amazing progress (as for the compositions) is the vocals of Peter Gabriel, compared to the debut. Now he has found his own voice! And the use of instruments (12-string, mellotron, piano, flute, organ, bass, etc) is miles ahead of anything heard on the debut. - Psst, Matti, stop comparing this to the debut. - OK. Now, some of you certainly disagree, but I think this is ALMOST as great album as Nursery Cryme. The certain wandering spirit (which, on the other hand, is largely behind the album's uniqueness) was replaced by more colourful dramatic approach, perfected further in Foxtrot. Selling England By The Pound (1973) again has those wandering, meditative moments but with quite different, more polished musical approach.

'Looking For Someone' is a gorgeous opener and sets the mood for the album which is full of sadness, solitude and alienation. 'White Mountain' is a fantastic (I mean also reminding of hero sagas, ancient ballads, Beowulf and so on) track, but sadly suffers more than others from muddy sound quality. 'Visions Of Angels' is relatively simple and pastoral but reaching majestic power. Lyrically it's perhaps the naivest song.

Side Two features two long tracks with a strong narrative level, plus the album's shortest and calmest song, 'Dusk', which I also love. Phillips is very recognizable backing vocalist here, and the flute solo is among the best flute moments in the entire Genesis discography. 'Stagnation' (its ending chords were often played on concerts, also on Seconds Out, segued to Musical Box, wasn't it?) tells of a sole survivor of a global catastrophe. Eerie! And finally, the magnificent 'Knife', which is bursting with anger. Faint- hearted better not listen to its mid-part (including very frightened screams) alone in the dark!

Review by Prog Sothoth
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars It would be silly to explore a fascinating and somewhat unique year of progressive rock, being 1970, without a strong mention of Genesis' Trespass. From what I gather, it's currently the most reviewed album here of that year, thus time has been quite beneficial to it as the band itself would hit wider acclaim as a theatrical act, a super big pop/rock act, and these days as one of the legendary grandmasters of prog rock. Given that status, any studio album by Genesis is going be put under a ton of scrutiny. Their debut album remains more of a botched curiosity, but even without Collins & Hackett on board, the sophomore effort Trespass is an important part of their discography and one of the most significant leaps in quality I can think of concerning almost any rock band.

To me personally, this is one of those rare albums where it begins as a decent offering, and then steadily progresses during the entire duration towards greatness. In other words, I dig each song better than the last.

The first three tracks can be considered "good stuff" but they don't exactly blow my mind. Peter's vocals are a plus right from the get-go, as his soulful delivery early on is not something I hear too often from the guy. It's actually a bit restrained from the antics I'm used to hearing aurally from his Genesis days, and combined with the overall wistful quality of the music, it works in creating that "pastoral" vibe everyone seems to mention when regarding this album. Anthony Philips certainly aids in this conclusion as well with his atmospheric layer of texture, often of the acoustic variety.

"Stagnation" is where Trespass really hits the next level. It's among their best mellow tunes that, despite the running time, never gets, well, stagnant. It evolves from quiet moments to more energetic sections while retaining an almost carefree ambience, and despite the dated production, there's a strong sense of lushness to it. "Dusk" is a shorter piece, but even more gorgeous with quality backup vocals that are almost haunting yet soothing in nature. The song just drifts and takes me along for the ride. This of course leaves one unprepared for the final cut off the album, "The Knife", which certainly earns its stripes as one of Genesis' most memorable tracks, and definitely the one that would set the pace for their next batch of albums while being inferior to none of them. It's a deserved classic and one of the most noteworthy prog tunes from 1970, representing that years' uncertainty and uneasy outlook towards the future better than almost anything else in its time. It's theatrical, complex and dire with little room for psychedelic excess. It also rocks pretty damn hard! It doesn't stand out like a sore thumb only because there are plenty of moments throughout the rest of the album that indicate that this band is not on some languid folk journey, but it's a heavy hitter nonetheless.

I have to admit that the band probably did right by replacing John Mayhew with Phil Collins before Nursery Cryme since he doesn't seem to have that impact needed for the direction the band would be taking, but he's serviceable enough here. The rest of the band is top notch throughout this album, including poor Anthony Phillips. I wouldn't say this is my favorite album by them; the next two actually qualify for that, but as far as a follow-up to a truly humble debut, this album is actually staggering.

Review by EatThatPhonebook
4 stars 7/10

Trespass is a youthful, romantic album that brings Genesis to a new level.

After the innocent sounding debut album, Genesis take a brave step forward with "Trespass", by some considered one of the best albums of the band. This happens also to be the album thanks to which Genesis started to gain the fame and respect they had when releasing all the other magical albums that follow.

"Trespass" is not exactly melodic in it's nature: it is quite distant from Yes' "Time And Word" where the main focus is the melody. Genesis' release is much more reliant on atmosphere and musicianship, and the music is much more Progressive in it's nature than Yes would be until the "Yes Album" or even "Close To The Edge". In this particular album, I sense much more romanticism than any other Genesis album, which makes it unique in not only sound but also overall feeling: Peter Gabriel is here more nostalgic than ever, and the lyrics are as well representing the era of the new youth, confused about the great rushes of life. What is noticeable however, is the almost amateurish musicianship, very loose, and sometimes I can't help feeling that it needed adjustments in order to capture the actual moods the band wanted to deliver with that piece. However Progressive is something that is not about technicality exclusively, and this album in my opinion proves it elegantly.

Songs like "Looking For Someone", "White Mountain", "Vision Of Angels", are a great example of that atmosphere this band has accomplished with "Trespass". However, there is melody as well, like in the heavy times of "The Knife" or even the most wonderful song off the album, "Dusk", the shortest but definitely the most haunting.

This sophomore LP gained a whole lot for Genesis, and helped the process of creating masterpieces such as the following albums. "Trespass" may just be darn close in being essential for understanding the development of the great Prog Rock bands in their earlier days.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
5 stars One of the greatest evolutionary leaps in musical history occurred when GENESIS recorded their second album TRESPASS in 1970 only a year after an uninspired collection of bland pop songs for a debut. TRESPASS is very much an oddity in the GENESIS discography on many levels. First of all John Silver was replaced by John Mayhew on drums. After this album Anthony Phillips would leave the band due to stage fright and the inability to play live. As a result a lot of the medieval pastoral sound that is on display here would leave with him for his interest in classical guitar is one of the key components of the music. Also after this album the band was displeased with the drumming of John Mayhew and replaced him with Phil Collins. A mystery to me because i really love Mayhew's contributions.

This album represents a brief moment in time and sole album with the Phillips, Mayhew, Gabriel, Banks and Rutherford lineup which is a crying shame because it truly is my favorite GENESIS sound and album. The possibilities were limitless but circumstances intervened and the band jettisoned this sound and moved into other musical arenas. All wasn't lost as the influence factor was substantial particularly in the romantic symphonic progressive Italian bands who picked it up and branched it out into myriad directions. It is also the most democratic of all GENESIS albums with each band member equally contributing to every song.

This is perhaps one of the most dramatic albums as well. It has a very turbulent feel despite it remaining mellow and subdued for the most part. Gabriel's theatrical pomp makes its debut here as well and the sudden more energetic outbursts that occur in the midst of the mostly slower parts is well timed and heightens the dramatic flair even more. The finale "The Knife" which is the most upbeat of the lot finishes off the medieval feel of kings and queens with a triumphant victory for the lands. The whole thing has a kind of "Lord Of The Rings" feel to it actually. The progressive time signatures are off the chart yet the tracks remain fairly structured with parts reoccurring throughout. Even the lyrics don't rhyme much of the time. The chaotic nature of the compositions is somehow suavely smoothed over with beautiful instrumental passages and romantic, poetic and cataclysmic lyrical content.

While many critics have panned this album for various reasons including Gabriel's vocals lacking power, Phillips' guitar playing sounding muted and the lyrical content being muddled and confusing, i find these attributes are what makes this album stand out in the crowd. I have a love / hate relationship with many of the Hackett / Collins albums that came after but this one was love at first listen and has only gotten better since. Although i have read that the production is weak, my 2007 remastered version sounds just fine to my ears. Personally this is the finest hour for GENESIS in my book and although i do like many others that follow, none has the absolute power to mesmerize me like this one does.

Review by VianaProghead
4 stars Review Nš 6

'Trespass' is my second review of a Genesis' album and I didn't choose it by chance, despite I don't consider it their second best work and even be my second choice. The best and my favourite is undoubtedly 'Selling England By The Pound', which was my first review on Progarchives. However, I think this is a very special album in Genesis' discography and it always had a very own place into my heart. So, it always deserved a very special attention by me.

'Trespass' is regarded, by many of their fans, as Genesis first album. In reality, their real debut studio album is 'From Genesis To Revelation', released in 1969. Although, this is a very different album, a non progressive work, a kind of a pre-record from the group. Therefore, many consider 'Trespass' as their debut album. Even in some bands catalogs, their debut album doesn't appear as part of the group's discography. However, the band never disowned it.

Anyway, there is no possible comparison between both works. In reality, 'Trespass' has nothing to do with 'From Genesis To Revelation'. It shows a truly improvement compared to their previous work. The changes are completely drastic. I believe that no other band has made such radical changes in a so short period of time. 'Trespass' is really a progressive album. Curiously, it doesn't have yet the participation of Steve Hackett. However, I sincerely like very much of Anthony Phillips work, which is, in my humble opinion, one of the most impressive and talented progressive studio musicians, a true multi-instrumentalist, which clearly left his signature on this album.

So, 'Trespass' is the second studio album by Genesis and was released in 1970. It's their only album with the participation of their third drummer John Mayhew (R.I.P.) and it's also their last work with their former guitarist Phillips. The line up on the album is Peter Gabriel (lead vocals, oboe, flute, accordion, bass drum and percussion), Anthony Phillips (backing vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, dulcimer and percussion), Tony Banks (backing vocals, organ, piano, mellotron and guitar), Mike Rutherford (backing vocals, bass, classical guitar and cello) and John Mayhew (backing vocals, drums and percussion).

'Trespass' has six tracks. The first track 'Looking For Someone' written by Gabriel, Phillips, Banks and Rutherford is a very strong and emotional track and is a great opener to the album. It's a very beautiful song but it's also very dark. It starts slowly and explodes during the development of the theme. It represents undoubtedly a great musical moment. The second track 'White Mountain' written by Phillips and Rutherford is a piece based on acoustic guitar and complemented by great keyboard work. The song is a fable about a wolf who seeks to usurp the authority of their leader. It's a very melodic and soft song influenced by the folk music. This is another strong moment on the album. The third track 'Visions Of Angels' written by Phillips and Rutherford is another excellent track with great Gabriel's vocal work, accompanied by beautiful keyboards. This is another very good song, with a fine melody and it has also an excellent piano work by Banks. The fourth track 'Stagnation' written by Gabriel, Phillips, Banks, Rutherford and Mayhew is one of best tracks on the album. The music moves into a crescendo with an accentuation from acoustic guitar and the keyboard work. It's one of the best tracks in the earlier Genesis' sound and in the Phillips' musical era. This is also their first most progressive track. The fifth track 'Dusk' written by Phillips and Rutherford is the smallest song on the album. It's a very calm and beautiful ballad with backing vocals from the other band members. This is the simplest song on the album, but it still is very good. The sixth track 'The Knife' written by Gabriel and Banks is the great highlight of the album that quickly became the first classic of Genesis. This is a composition unusually aggressive for the band, and in my humble opinion it pronounce, in a certain way, the path the band would follow on their next albums. It's the most famous song on the album and it's also the heaviest track of Genesis ever.

Conclusion: 'Trespass' is the sweetest, delicate, fragile, romantic, innocent, naive and pure album of Genesis and it has their first masterpiece, 'The Knife'. This is undoubtedly the best known song from the album and their heaviest too. As all we know, Genesis became known as a group that have never explored the hard and heavy rock territories. So, 'The Knife' represents perfectly well that style. However, 'Return Of The Giant Hogweed' and 'The Musical Box' from their next third studio album 'Nursery Crime', released in 1971, contain serious heaviness elements as well. In my humble opinion, 'Trespass' has a certain mystic artistic aura. It's full of musical emotions that flow nicely and elegantly from poetic, impressionist and pastoral to aggressive and dramatic theatrical scenes that only Genesis can do. If it wasn't its less careful musical production I could have rated it with 5 stars.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Review by ALotOfBottle
4 stars For a sophomore effort, this album is very consistent and quite bold sounding. It has aged very well and on this one, Genesis provides some very interesting material, still today.

"Looking For Someone" sets what would later be Genesis' classic sound, this song features a spotlight of Tony Banks' playing, which is a spot-on. Yawning guitar parts from Anthony Phillips are equally entertaining. This song also incorporates Peter Gabriel's flute playing and these well known strong, high vocals. "White Mountain" is an up-beat tempo song with an interesting rhythm and very rhythmic organ playing with pleasant acoustic guitar and flute passages in between. "Visions of Angels" showcases Tony Banks' grand piano playing. Although quite simillar to previous tracks, this one is equally enjoyable."Stagnation" is a quiter song, very soft, pleasant and pleasing. Gradually building up power to become much more dynamically varied in the end. "Dusk" is an acoustic track, having a sort of pastoral sound to it, also to me, it is a reflection of the album cover. Quite medieval, but in an interesting, modern way. "The Knife" is in my opinion the definitive track on "Tresspass." Let me start with lyrics. A very shall we say left-wing, politically progressive, post-hippie song about freedom, fight and violence. Very interesting. The lyrics are well matched with a very military-like marching tempo and heavy guitar. In fact, this is one of Genesis' heavier moments. A fantastic closing of the album, leaves you overwhelmed with the quality of this work.

After the folky "From Genesis To Revelation", "Tresspass" is a confident step towards what would become Genesis' classic sound. Not only that, it's just a great album on its own.

Review by Magnum Vaeltaja
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars In their Gabriel-Banks-Rutherford-Hackett-Collins heyday, Genesis produced some incredible music, including some veritable masterpieces. However, despite all of the great material that came out from this line-up, they never released a true masterpiece album; each one, even my favourite, Nursery Cryme, had its flaws here or there. But without Hackett or Collins, while Genesis was still in its incubation phase so to speak, they somehow, and I'm sure you could attribute it to either youthful energy or beginner's luck, managed to pull off a perfect album. So while 1970's "Trespass" may not necessarily rise to the same absolute peaks as some of the band's later material, the album provides such a cohesive, intertwined pastoral journey that it is absolutely essential for any prog collector.

While this album is usually brushed aside as just folky, or just soft, with The Knife waking you up at the end, there really is much more subtlety and finesse to the whole experience, and it really gives a good diversity of moods. Take "Looking For Someone", for example. Peter Gabriel is obviously Peter Gabriel here, with his eccentric lyrics and melodramatic delivery giving a hazy, haunting opening. And what really makes this track, as well as the others on "Trespass", stand out in the Genesis catalog is the fact that, although Gabriel takes many poetic liberties in his libretto, the lyrics aren't quite as overblown as on "Foxtrot" or "The Lamb"; the sentiments still feel genuinely human.

Anyhow, after "Looking For Someone" erupts to a climax, the album does generally settle down in terms of intensity, though the energy is still prominent. As I said, the album is very consistent throughout and there are no serious standout tracks between "White Mountain" and "The Knife"; they're all quite excellent. Some particular moments do shine through, of course, but I'll leave those to you, the listener, to pick out.

With all of the mystery and enchantment of the British highland countryside that we see on the cover, "Trespass" takes the listener into territory seldom crossed, a genuinely breathtaking, human, but still magical, view of the often caricatured medieval imagery that prog dabbles in. 5 stars.

Review by Kempokid
3 stars The massive jump in quality from the poor, pop oriented 'From Genesis To Revelation' to this is not to be understated, as within the space of this one album, the distinct sound of Genesis was already being formed, with much more mature compositions and all around much greater performance. Despite this, this is far from an album which I would consider perfect, despite the incredible leaps in quality. Nonetheless, this is still an album which I find to be of merit, and definitely one that I have listened to quite a number of times.

'Looking For Someone' is a passable song, with some great use of mellotron and organ throughout, building in intensity as it continues going through, with a particularly noteworthy instrumental passage at the end. While this is by no means one of the peaks of 'Genesis', it is nonetheless an impressive song. There are two songs on the album that give me quite a high opinion of the album overall, those being 'White Mountain' and 'The Knife'. 'White Mountain' is a soft, absolutely beautiful acoustic piece with some of my favourite vocal melodies by the band. The layering present here provides some great imagery to go along with the lyrics as well, which while it's something that becomes much more noticeable and impressive on later albums, is still great here. 'The Knife' is definitely the best song here, being a dark, intense track filled with energy. This is definitely one of the more aggressive songs that the band wrote, and overall, it's no wonder that this became the first 'Genesis' classic, as it just gets it right on so many levels. As a whole, the album manages to sound quite delicate and pleasant throughout, without any moments which I could truly call bad.

Despite my overall fond opinion of the album, I cannot deny some large flaws that 'Trespass' contains. The largest one is the overall thin production, which does take some atmosphere and power away from the greater moments on the album, while also weakening the aspects that were already nothing to write home about. I feel like if 'The Knife' was written on a later album with sound mixing and production worked out much better, what is already a formidable track could have become even greater. My other issue is the fact that 'Visions of Angels', 'Stagnation' and 'Dusk' all do nothing for me, with all of them feeling fairly uninspired for the most part. While there are some good moments on these, such as the well executed crescendo on 'Stagnation', on the whole, I just don't find them to be anything special, and it does make the middle portion of the album quite dull.

Overall, despite the monumental jump in quality and maturity compared to 'From Genesis To Revelation', 'Trespass' has enough flaws on it to have me consider it quite non essential, and so I feel as if a 3 star rating is appropriate. I definitely consider the highlights of the album to be worth listening to, and they're undoubtedly why I've listened to this album a lot despite finding half of it mediocre. At the very least, the album manages to maintain a very pleasant nature about it until the final track, which ups the ante in such an enjoyable way. I'd recommend giving this album a listen after going through the peak of the Peter Gabriel era of 'Genesis', as it definitely shows many of the building blocks that would make up these albums, and is still a decent listen.

Best songs: White Mountain, The Knife

Weakest songs: Visions of Angels, Dusk

Verdict: Anyone who enjoys the main portion of the Peter Gabriel output of Genesis will find something to enjoy here, but I do recommend that those albums are listened to before this

Review by patrickq
2 stars Overall, Genesis is a symphonic-rock band, but if I had to classify the band based only on Trespass, I'd probably go with proto-prog. Although this band would be considered a trailblazer in just a few years, Trespass finds Genesis absorbing and refashioning the kind of music the Moody Blues, the Nice, and Procol Harum were making at the time. In fact, Trespass doesn't strike me as symphonic until halfway through "Visions of Angels," the last song on the first side. 

It's at that point that Tony Banks begins to more regularly use a wider variety of  keyboards, and the backing vocals become more choral. The following two songs, "Stagnation" and "Dusk," generally follow this trend, and fittingly, they're a bit more ponderous than those on the first side. Finally, on "The Knife," the last song on Trespass, we get a good look at the Genesis to come. While there are some flashes of brilliance on the first five songs, the difference between them and "The Knife" is stark. Luckily, the band chose "The Knife" as its direction for its next few albums. 

Most of the strengths of Trespass relate directly to lead singer and lyricist Peter Gabriel. Gabriel's somewhat rough voice demands a lot of space, and on Trespass there are plenty of passages during which the instrumentation is relatively unassuming, at least for Genesis. This works well, giving Gabriel the legroom he needs, not only for his voice, but for the listener to absorb his lyrics. Just four years later, The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway would suffer from the near-impossibly of balancing the band's complex arrangements with the desire to highlight Gabriel's voice. But for most of Trespass, this isn't much of an issue. The lyrics (which I'm assuming were written by Gabriel) are perceptive and smart - - but generally not pedantic.

If Genesis had broken up after releasing Trespass, I might rate it higher, but unfairly or not, I consider it nonessential simply because there's nothing here - - not even "The Knife" - - that Genesis wouldn't surpass several times over their next three albums. In nearly every respect, Trespass seems to have served as a necessary prototype for their best Gabriel-era albums: Selling England by the Pound and Foxtrot. So this is one for Genesis fans and Peter Gabriel fans. For anyone else, I'd suggest starting with Foxtrot or Selling England.

Review by jamesbaldwin
5 stars Genesis that play "Trespass" looks like a different band than that of the debut album, yet they changed only the drummer (John Mayhew). As happened at "Le Orme", after a first melodic sixties style album, comes a second opera already fully progressive, with 6 long and elaborate songs.

The beginning is enthralling: we hear Peter Gabriel sings: "Looking For Someone" and then starts a seven minutes song that condenses the canons of progressive rock: changes of rhythm, melodic progressions (great work by Mayhew), instrumental pieces. The music perfectly accompanies the sung part, and reaches the climax in rhythmic progressions, which are alternated with the more meditative parts (with keyboards and flute). The arrangements are obtained with instruments that all work in synergy to obtain an overall sound effect (in the future instead the instruments will often interfere with each other) epic and theatrical. The song is definitely inspired. Rating 8,5.

The second track, "White Mountain", almost seven minutes, includes the word "Trespass" on the lyrics. It's more melodic than the previous one, with an acoustic beginning (Phillips on the 12-string guitar) that anticipates what Hackett will do in the next albums. Evocative flute in the middle. The best melody on the Lp. Another inspired song. Rating 8+.

Genesis will never again produce such a definitely beautiful, immediate, inspired beginning, with rhythm and instrumentation at the service of the melody.

Side A finishes with "Visions Of Angels" almost seven minutes (again). The track is melodic, and epic but in the chorus it goes beyond rhetoric and pompous. However, the melody is again clear and inspired. Towards the end it becomes repetitive: essentially it is a melodic verse-chorus song that is dilated up to 7 minutes, and lacking an autonomous instrumental part, the musical material of the verse and chorus returns pumped several times. Rating 7,5.

Side B opens with the only composition on the album (Stagnation) that more resembles a mini suite (almost 9 minutes) rather than a dilated song. The atmosphere is reflective, introverted, bucolic, and Banks embroiders a delicate melody on the keyboards, aided by Gabriel's flute, which fills most of the first part of the piece. Here for the first time music is the supporting skeleton of the song, while the sung part is at the service of some musical moments. In the second part there is a rhythmic progression that makes the song more engaging, ending up in an epic and theatrical way, even if still a little rhetorical. Rating 8.

Coming back to the acoustic and bucolic climate of the previous one, "Dusk" is the only medium-length song on the record. It'is a minor piece, with a large, pretty guitar arpeggio, which brings a moment of relaxation amidst so many great songs with rhythmic progressions. Rating 7.

"The Knife" is a decidedly more rock song than the previous ones, in fact it's the ride rhythm that prevails over the melody, amplified by the guitar and the keyboards. It will become a live classic. However, it contains a melodic instrumental interlude with the flute. Closes a guitar solo and a rhythmic progression too long, which leads to create a mesmeric vortex, a bit forced for the truth, in order to reach the grand finale with sound saturation. Rating 8+.

Genesis that play Trespass are inspired, they produce clear and immediate melodies, they find a perfect balance between sung parts and instrumental parts. In the coming years, Genesis will never be so immediate in compositions and performances, apart from some songs. Trespass is a small masterpiece, despite the production that flattens the sound of the instruments, especially the drums.

Medium quality of the songs: 7,92. Rating: 9. Five stars.

Review by kenethlevine
4 stars In the late 1960s, CAT STEVENS was a pop sensation in his native UK, a purveyor of catchy 2 minute numbers that were not even as deep as wide. Then he was stricken with a grave illness and spent months in a sanitarium, during which time he wrote more than 3 dozen songs that would mark his transformation into a serious singer songwriter. The first recorded evidence was the brilliant "Mona Bone Jakon", which, while later overshadowed by the mega success of its two successors, projects some of his most intensely personal and endearingly self conscious visions. Wait, this is a review of GENESIS "Trespass"?. Ok scratch the above. On second thought, let's leave it here because of three connections: they were both released in 1970, that Cat album included another cat named PETER GABRIEL as guest flutist, and of paramount significance, "Trespass" is GENESIS' "Mona Bone jakon".

The 1969 polar opposite to the lunar landing was the abomination known as "From Genesis to Revelation", which proved that distinctly average material could be rendered utterly abysmal by adding simpering strings. In the fallout from this debut, GENESIS shed their naff producer and got stuck in a thatched cottage for a long weekend with a possessed Grundig that had "In the Court of the Crimson King" on auto repeat or whatever it was called back then. That explains why "Trespass" spends over 42 minutes absolutely not sounding like that classic.

What "Trespass" does do is establish the Peter Gabriel fronted GENESIS arrangements and lyricism even while two ultimately key members were yet to join the ensemble. Gabriel's voice is less domineering here, but Banks' organ, Phillips' 12 string, and the vaguely folk and epic centered themes all announce that GENESIS was done with pop music a while. The reason "Trespass" is generally not acknowledged as in the peak period of the group is that it lacks the bombast that would mark that era. Only the closer, "The Knife", speaks to that power , and its closest relative might be "The Cage" from the Lamb album 4 years later. The rest is more understated but just as personal, and songs like "White Mountain" and "Visions of Angels" bare a pithy personality that was soon abandoned.

At the risk of a breach, I find "Trespass" to be more enjoyable overall than the next two GENESIS albums, though it is ultimately eclipsed by "Selling England...". It's the perfect launchpad into an exploration of several prominent careers and their influences.

Review by A Crimson Mellotron
3 stars The album on which Genesis became Genesis, a turning point for the band and certainly the most important step towards their transformation into progressive rock trailblazers, 'Trespass' from 1970 showcased from the opening seconds of 'Looking for Someone' that this collective of five young musician is set on to stand out from the sea of rock bands back then. Abandoning their more accessible psych-pop side and changing the man behind the drum kit, Genesis were decisive enough to start writing more challenging music, more complex compositions, and to eventually become this very intellectual and peaceful prog titan.

'Trespass', as much as it is quite impressive and a giant step forward from their debut, is still a but feral, still very imperfect, hardly as mind-blowing as the albums that would come after it, more folky and very, very acoustic. And it is probably this romantic and peaceful side of this elegant second studio album by Genesis that makes is not as appealing as something like 'Nursery Cryme', or 'Foxtrot', or 'Trick'. The band are still exploring, still developing their sound, and I think they achieve the best results on the 9-minute epic 'The Knife', a blistering and aggressive prog number, the 'heaviest' song on the album and the first really dark achievement for Genesis, standing out with the masterful playing and the ballsy approach.

A prevalent Tony Banks, a brilliant Peter Gabriel, and the introduction of the band's extensive use of 12-string guitars, another aspect of their music that sets them apart from a lot of their peers, as they use the instruments for extensive acoustic passages, underlaying Gabriel's 'calmer' singing. Another great moment is the opening track 'Looking for Someone', a beautiful way to open the album; 'White Mountain' is also interesting to hear but the rest of the record is too tranquil, too mellow and too British to a point where it becomes hard to go through longer songs like 'Stagnation' without wondering "When will this finish?"

A good album, but not brilliant. The first important prog album by Genesis that is, however, unrefined and unfortunately has some tedious episodes that I needn't hear, especially when albums like the following five by the band exist; a very promising and unique collection of songs, though, by a band that showed personality and desire to move forward in a musical universe of their own!

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