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Genesis - Invisible Touch CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

2.50 | 1500 ratings

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Mr. Gone
2 stars At the age of 14, I joined the RCA Music Club (anyone from the USA remember that?). Among the first 6 cassettes I got (this was 1986, after all) was this one. My first exposure to this album, aside from the title track which was the band's first single, was from some friends visiting from Canada who had brought their own cassette copy with them (and hearing it definitely piqued my curiosity). At that age I was still formulating my opinions of music, but upon purchasing it, I discovered something different between Genesis and what most other bands getting airplay on the radio - the only way I could formulate it was "they don't use their instruments like everyone else". I had never heard the term "progressive rock" before, but that cassette started my journey into the land of prog and fusion jazz. I owe a great deal to this cassette for pushing me onto that voyage, providing me with countless hours of enjoyment, analysis and speculation in the often sophisticated realm of some of the most technically challenging, thought-provoking music out there.

It pains me, therefore, to say that "Invisible Touch", in and of itself, simply doesn't hold up all that well as a document. It has some nice moments - "Tonight, Tonight, Tonight", while a bit overlong, has a nice mood and some melodic bass playing; "The Brazilian" is certainly the most progressive piece on here (and unlike "Second Home By the Sea" from the eponymous album, this one is actually interesting), and "Domino", while perhaps a bit overstated as a live centerpiece, is certainly better overall than "Home By The Sea" from "Genesis".

However, there are a lot more pleasant-but-unremarkable ballads on here. "In Too Deep", "Throwing It All Away", and the fun-but-entirely-superficial title track are the chief offenders here. That's a fair amount of filler, and none of the remaining tracks necessarily just reach out and grab you. There's nothing as riveting as "Abacab" or even "It's Gonna Get Better". The lows are not terrible, but there are no great highs here either. It's just a lot of mediocrity with some extra fat that needed serious trimming. Adding "Do The Neurotic" in might have actually pushed it up to three stars, but the band opted for what was more commercially viable. I get the desire to make money (and this was their top-seller, after all), and in a post-LP era that track might have been included, but its absence because of time and circumstance does the album no favors.

I'm grateful to Genesis for what this album inspired me to investigate. IQ, Pendragon, Brand X, Weather Report, the Flower Kings and tons of other great music fills my collection now because of this purchase. But, by itself, it simply doesn't hold up as anything more than mediocre. Two bittersweet stars.

Mr. Gone | 2/5 |


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