1978 – “FOLLOW YOU, FOLLOW ME” from AND THEN THERE WERE THREE
Genesis began as a very avant garde, progressive rock group. Lead singer, Peter Gabriel, would dress in outlandish outfits and their lengthy songs were elaborate symphonic adventures. In 1978, Peter and Steve Hackett had left the group, leaving the trio of Phil Collins, Mike Rutherford, and Tony Banks. Their first album continued their progressive style but they get a little poppy and scored their first chart hit with “Follow You, Follow Me”.
1980 – “TURN IT ON AGAIN” from DUKE
During the making of this album, Phil was recording his landmark debut album, Face Value. Duke was recorded as a concept album with a 30 minute story of a character named Albert. “Misunderstanding” was the biggest single but I love the rock jam, “Turn It On Again” where the band’s different members get a chance to shine.
1981 – “NO REPLY AT ALL” from ABACAB
In my opinion, the greatest Genesis album was Abacab. “Man On The Corner” is a 5 star song and the first time Phil wrote about the homeless situation which was as bad in England as the States. The title track is a classic rock radio staple. But “No Reply At All” is simply the pinnacle of the Genesis songbook. Buoyed by the horn section from Earth, Wind, and Fire, the song is rock, R&B, funk, and must be played at maximum volume. The change in tempo at the 3:00 minute mark is perfection, brilliant track!
1983 – “MAMA” from GENESIS
Rolling Stone Magazine applauded this CD saying Genesis got off their “ivory tower of artistry” and became the New Genesis, commercial, pop/rock fusion. Hits like “That’s All” and “Taking It All Too Hard” were legitimate pop hits. The vital track from the album was “Mama”, one of the most inspired of Phil Collins’ vocals. The song was about an obsession with a prostitute and the demonic laugh in the chorus is a very creative and eerie effect.
1986 – “IN TOO DEEP” from INVISIBLE TOUCH
As Genesis became a super group, my interest in the band was dwindling. Invisible Touch sold 14 million copies and the band was saturating MTV with their singles. They are lampooned in the movie, American Psycho, starring Christian Bale, when he rants that Invisible Touch is an “undisputed masterpiece”. “In Too Deep” is my favorite track, it’s soft, sensitive, but lyrics like “I can still remember everything you said”, kill me everytime!
1991 – “SINCE I LOST YOU” from WE CAN’T DANCE
The final CD with Phil Collins was popular but you could tell they weren’t the same band of the early 80’s. The title track was trendy with an equally cheesy video. Yet, tracks like “No Son Of Mine” and my selection continued the Genesis rock legacy. “Since I Lost You” feels like a long-lost brother to Phil’s “Against All Odds”. Dedicated to Eric Clapton who just lost his son, “Since I Lost You” is epic, emotional, and you can feel the tears falling down during the closing minutes.