Genesis (Audio Cassette) Import
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2013 limited edition Virgin Records 40 series vinyl reissue. Universal
Witnessing an attempt at genre crossover is kind of like watching a logrolling competition. The failures are almost as excruciatingly embarrassing for the audience as they are for the performer. But when one gets a glimpse at one of the rare success stories: Ah! What a thing of beauty! Genesis's 1983 eponymous release sits proudly in the latter camp. Laying down nine midtempo tracks that are full and crisp without wearing too glossy of a pop sheen, Phil Collins, Tony Banks, and Mike Rutherford create an aural world where Yes fans and those who like chart-toppers live in harmony. And whatever lyrical well Collins chooses to tap proves to be a gusher, whether he is dipping into reservoirs of Gabrielan menace ("Mama," "Home by the Sea," "Silver Rainbow"), stealing a page from pop music's huge tome of conflicted-heart numbers ("That's All," "Taking It All To Hard"), or getting just plain ol' ridiculous ("Illegal Alien"). At the risk of seriously ruffling indie-rock feathers, one might even say that, in a way, Genesis sits as the great-grandfather of Radiohead's OK Computer. The idea that your body can rock while your brain gets tickled ain't a new one; it's just that people don't put it into practice that often. --Bob Michaels --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
"Mama" opens the album and was released as the first single, but it is hardly a standard "pop" song by any measure. It has a darker sound than one would expect for a Genesis song, though it does fit well with other songs on the album. The song didn't do very well on the U.S. pop charts, though it did reach #4 in the UK. "That's All" comes next and it is more of a standard pop tune, soft and simple and not surprisingly it did better in the U.S. as a result. The last song(s) on the first half of the album is/are "Home By the Sea". Though split into "Home By the Sea" and "Second Home By the Sea" this is really one piece and is a good example of how Genesis still incorporated progressive elements in their songs. The song was played on tour for years after this album and was often a showpiece with its extended instrumental section. The piece also works well with "Mama" in giving the album a somewhat eerie feel up to this point with the exception of "That's All".
The second half opens with "Illegal Alien" a light and humorous piece which suffered from overplay. It was released as a video, but after hearing and seeing it a few times it tends to become annoying. "Taking it All Too Hard" is next and is another typical soft-rock type pop song. Being on the same album as "That's All" and "It's Gonna Get Better" made it somewhat redundant. It was released as a single but didn't do particularly well.Read more ›
By 1983, Genesis had been a trio for 5 years, and saw their success slowly increase as the years went by. If that wasn't enough, their drummer-turned-leader Phil Collins was pursuing a solo career that would almost eclipse his band's in terms of popularity and records sold. Their days as a progressive rock collective were long gone, and even though they retained some aspects from that era, pop music was now their bread & butter, and with albums like their 1983 self-titled, fans who stuck around need not have worried if too much success would cloud the band's judgement.
It's amazing that after Phil Collins released 2 best-selling solo albums, he was willing to get back together with his full-time band to create an album that further broke Genesis through to the mainstream, perhaps helped by Phil's success on his own. Unlike previous albums, where individual members might contribute their own songs, all 9 songs on GENESIS were composed by the group together, proving that no amount of solo success could tear them apart.
Genesis had been no stranger to the top 40 by early 1984, but they finally reached the top 10 with "That's All" peaking at #6. A relentlessly upbeat piano pop song, perhaps some fans wondered about Genesis' motivation towards abandoning their progressive past once they heard this song.Read more ›
"Illegal Alien" sounds blatantly commercial with mocking stereotypes and racist undertones. Although, in some cases, there is some truth to some of the lyrics, releasing it as a single with a silly video was a little much. I've always liked "Taking It all Too Hard." It is not as remembered as much as other Genesis singles, but it is one of my favorites. It is very catchy. The rest of the album sounds like B-Side material. Very banal music that makes the less memorable tracks off Abacab sound fantastic. "Silver Rainbow" is almost embarrassing: "but if you're sitting there beside her and a bear comes in the room and you keep on going cos you're unaware then you know that you are there." Still, there is enough great stuff on here to make it well worth it. This eponymous release was the calm before the storm for, three years later riding on Collins' solo triumphs, the band released an album that made them superstars with music far less creative and innovative than most of the material on this album.
Most recent customer reviews
I'd forgotten what a sellout this album was. It's not really a Genesis project, it's Phil Collins' first commercial album.Published 9 months ago by TG
Blurb promo reads digitally remastered edition of 1983 Genesis album, EMI 2009.
This is a lie.
This is the old , original cd issue, not even a true 16 bits , more like 14... Read more
I lost this CD years ago and am glad to have bought it again. Brings me back 30 years and still like the whole album.Published 11 months ago by mdee
I love it. An old favorite that I had a cassette tape of! can now listen on CDPublished 17 months ago by Susan Vasilinda
Many classics from pop tracks to progressives one. Probably, the last great Genesis album before it became Phil Collins albums dressed as Genesis albums.Published 20 months ago by Maxime-Claude Tremblay
Mama is the only song here that's worth listening to. The rest is a joke are BETTER SOLO ALBUMS IN 1983!!!!! Read morePublished 24 months ago by Truthteller