5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Miles above the first Revisited
Steve doesn't stray too far afield from the original versions on Genesis Revisited 2. In that respect, one could argue GR2 is less adventurous than GR1. However, I believe GR1 also included some pretty horrid versions, perhaps out of a desire to put on a markedly new spin.
That problem is wiped away on GR2, where the versions stay pretty close to the originals...
Published 6 months ago by Ron Grouch
3.0 out of 5 stars Bon
Bon mais pour les fans de GENESIS seulement. Les pièces sont longues et le tempo est assez lent. Côté sonore c'est excellent
Published 1 month ago by alainl62
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Miles above the first Revisited,
This review is from: Genesis Revisited II (Audio CD)Steve doesn't stray too far afield from the original versions on Genesis Revisited 2. In that respect, one could argue GR2 is less adventurous than GR1. However, I believe GR1 also included some pretty horrid versions, perhaps out of a desire to put on a markedly new spin.
That problem is wiped away on GR2, where the versions stay pretty close to the originals.
If you're an admirer of Steve Hackett, what makes GR2 worthwhile is hearing Steve's guitar front and centre in all these versions. If anything, it offers an interesting alternate take.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 eternal beginnings,
This review is from: Genesis Revisited II (Audio CD)Thankfully Steve Hackett has a well deserved reputation for clinical honesty in perpetuating his craft, always truthful to his muse and indifferent to any outward criticism from a genuinely adoring public. He has carved a legendary status that is impressive, so one cannot claim that he is trying to cash in on past glories, quite to the contrary! The man is intelligent, technically unrivaled and continues to create brilliant music whether through his solo work or his many guest appearances, especially lately with the miraculous Kompendium project. He also chooses to surround himself with some the most celebrated artists in prog and beyond (hello Nik Kershaw!), the list is impressive whose who = Nick Beggs, Francis Dunnery, Roine Stolt, Jakko Jakczyk, Steve Rothery, Mikael Akerfeldt, Nad Sylvan and Steve Wilson. His current band mates have been around for such a long ride, loyalty has its rewards (O’Toole, Townsend, King, Lehmann). Steve hackett’s work keeps getting better and better, this seminal monument to his participation in one of music’s greatest achievements, which ended with HIS departure.
The Genesis catalogue is inspired with some masterful performances that have totally rejuvenated pieces that have attained legendary status already back in the 70s and ever since, armed with a cleaner, crisper production and enough variations on the themes to make it often better than the original (‘Entangled, Dancing with The Moonlit Knight, Can Utility and the Coastliners, The Chamber of 32 Doors, Eleventh Earl of Mar, Ripples, the majestic ultra-progressive duo of Unquiet Slumbers and its companion piece , ...In the Quiet Earth , Blood on the Rooftops”).
The only puzzle here is Neal Morse who just sucks on “The Return of the Giant Hogweed”. Strange as John Wetton does a grand job on “Afterglow”, his voice perfect for this kind of super-prog ballad!
“The Musical Box” is one of those classics that just cannot be bettered, period; it’s a Gabriel masterpiece and Amen! While “Supper’s Ready” has a Broadway feel with 5 different vocalists covering the Gabe’s ghostly delivery of sheer magic. Akerfeldt, Simon Collins (Phil’s son), Conrad Keely, Dunnery and Hackett himself do great honors to this timeless epic. Bravo!
“Unquiet Slumbers for the Sleepers…” and “,,, In the Quiet Earth” are the show stoppers here, a grandiose upward vortex of dizzying sounds and stellar playing, quite unparalleled in music history. The originals were brilliant and the reworks, well….
I must also mention Steve Wilson who shines vocally on both “Can Utility and the Coastliners” and “The Shadow of the Hierophant”, doing terrific renditions on both counts.
Brilliant time-tested tunes, tastefully modern reworkings, obvious passion and reverence for his craft, lovely packaging and mostly a sense of respect form the guitar man.
Bloody wow! This is a must have collection of Genesis/Hackett classics
5 eternal beginnings
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beau travail d'équipe qui respecte les originaux,
This review is from: Genesis Revisited II (Audio CD)Très bien fait pour la majorité des pistes et en respect des versions originales. Comparativement à GR1 qui est quand même bien, mais dont certaines pièces ont été beaucoup trop modifié(Dance on a volcano par exemple), avec GR2 le grand Steve Hackett nous démontre encore une fois tout son talent à la guitare avec toutes les nuances et subtilités qu'on lui connaît! Étant moi même guitariste-chanteur et un grand fan de Genesis depuis 1973, ce petit bijou est arrivé à point pour moi et je re-decouvre chaque pièces avec un grand plaisir et j'apprécie de plus en plus toutes les nuances et les subtilités du maître Hackett! Pour ce qui est des voies, le travail étant colossal, je trouve le résultat très bien dans l'ensemble, compte tenu qu'il ne fallait pas trop s'éloigner des originaux. Je souhaite avoir la chance que la tournée GR2 s'arrête à Québec, ou du moins au Québec...BRAVO Steve!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Une relecture parfaite,
This review is from: Genesis Revisited II (Audio CD)N'ayez pas peur, vous ne vous sentirz pas perdu par cette relecture. Peu de changement de l'original mais une guitare plus présente. Du Geneis à son meilleur par un guitariste hors-pair.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Revisited and recommended on vinyl!,
This review is from: Genesis Revisited II (Audio CD)I highly recommend this to someone who is a fan of this music by classic Genesis (between ‘Nursery Cryme and up to and including ‘Wind & Wuthering’) but also open minded. Also to listeners of any age who may not be familiar with Genesis but enjoy musical adventure and discovery. No one better to introduce them to this era than Steve Hackett, one of the originals and the best Genesis guitarist - period!
My thoughts are based on:
• my affection for the original music
• an ongoing appreciation for Steve Hackett as one of the still relevant Prog artists from the 70’s operating today and creating new music
• a true curiosity for music that is ‘revisited’ (a great word) years after its initial release
• more than one listening. Very important to truly differentiate these from the originals and to see these versions for what they add.
• This is NOT a tribute album!
In my opinion, tribute albums are something different and often less satisfying. As one of the original artists for the music covered here, it is not about admiration for the artist. That would be self-indulgent in this case anyway. A bad tribute album will make me want to put on the original versions. However, a great interpretation will stand on its own and add something special.
And one other, very important observation – Steve Hackett has been prolific in releasing new material, including the past decade. So when former band mate Mike Rutherford makes a statement like “if I were Steve…I’d rather do something new” (Ultimate Classic Rock, Sept. 2012) he clearly doesn’t know what Hackett has been doing. The most recent evidence is the wonderful “Beyond the Shrouded Horizon” from last year. Ironically, one of Rutherford’s next projects is an expanded reissue of “The Living Years”. Nothing more need to be said about this empty Rutherford critique.
In fact, I would up the ante to say that Hackett’s musical evolution of the past decade in particular has lead to the development of a very rich musical network. That is one of the reasons that I find this revisiting even more successful than the first (“Watcher of the Skies: Genesis Revisited”, 1997)
So what is it? It is great music revisited and sometimes reinterpreted. Classical music by Beethoven, Mozart, Bach and the like have continued to be interpreted and revisited for centuries. And very often when someone does a cover version of a great song, this is what they are going for. But not as a tribute. Instead, as an artist with something unique or different to add to it. This kind of mindset is more akin to what Hackett is doing here. Great music that is still faithful to the spirit of the originals and who better than one of the originals?
So if you are open to this idea, please proceed. If not, go put on your favourite copy of Foxtrot or Selling England… and enjoy it. No quarrel here. And please note that my review is based on the sumptuous vinyl version so the track order is a little different.
The gauntlet is dropped right from the beginning. ‘Horizons’ and ‘Supper’s Ready’ were the centerpiece of Foxtrot and here they are as a whole LP side again.
Horizons - There is nothing to change about Horizons but it is an exquisite piece on its own. Here it feels more like a dream door entrance to a darker, more textured Supper’s Ready.
Supper’s Ready - The first listen was immediately familiar with the recognition that the voices are different. However, after a few repeat visits, the casting becomes beautifully apparent and very effective. Like the vocalists are perfectly ‘cast’, the song takes on an identity of its own and the progression toward a darker tone culminates in the ‘Apocalypse In 9/8’ section with Hackett adding some new guitar parts to get that across. Beautifully balanced between capturing what made this song great while adding new power. Fantastic!
Musical Box – Going for what Hackett himself calls a more “nightmarish feel”, the track opens like a real musical box then transforming into the familiar chords to open the song. I like the voice of Nad Sylvan and the multi-layered vocals he lays down but I miss the Gabriel delivery of the original, especially at the close so a bit of a detraction over all. The original had bite in its attack. This version has it too and adds a clarity to the sound that has me feel it, not just hear it. A musical draw if you will…
Can-utility and the Coastliners – Kind of lost for me on Foxtrot at the end of side one, this version has a great vocal from Steven Wilson and an enhanced orchestral sound to elevate this to a more meaningful track overall. A definite plus!
Entangled – A beautiful song made even more so. Would not have thought it possible to improve on this ‘Trick of the Tail’ classic but…the voice of Jakko Jakszyck is even better suited than Phil Collins (!) and the harmonies by Amanda Lehmann add a feminine touch to take it over the top. Overall, a similar arrangement to the original but the guitars are a little more fragile giving it a lilting quality that seals the deal for me. The solo at the end is hauntingly effective leading to the mellotron sounding finale leaving the listener in another world or dimension, ready for the Hogweed’s return. Very well sequenced given they were on different albums!
Return of the Giant Hogweed – A solid track that follows perfectly from Entangled. I often found early Genesis albums to not have the sound quality of some of their contemporaries. That is no problem here and this version builds to an even more powerful chaos than the original. Adding some sound effects and extra guitar attack if anything, I would have had them go for it sooner. Still very evocative and effective.
Dancing With The Moonlit Knight – Quoting ‘Greensleeves’ at the beginning (“ to give a sense of the old English thread” according to Hackett) the Francis Dunnery vocal is eerily like vintage Peter Gabriel in the best possible way. I always liked this song but found it got kind of messy as it went on, so I was curious to see where this version went. Well, it is faithful to the original arrangement and feel, if anything a tad too much so. I wonder what would it have been like if some true traditional (as in Olde English) instrumentation had been used at the start with even heavier electrical sounds to jolt it – a more stark contrast to shock the sound. Nevertheless, it works well and it is not surprising to have Hackett’s guitar moved upfront more (hey, it is his album) and this version benefits from that. Some nice, if subtle touches like the classical guitar sound in the background in the first part of the song. What I also like is that it feels more open and spacious. So no big revelations but no harm done - an excellent song highlighted again with some sonic improvements. And while too often lead guitar was competing for space in the originals the lead guitar of Hackett is no longer buried in the mix but moved to be the highlight it deserves to be. And once again, a song from one album blends in beautifully to a song from a different album…
Fly on a Windshield – One of the highlights for me from ‘The Lamb LDOB’ album. Many have said it would have made a great single album - I wonder what that would have been like? However, we have single songs from it to enjoy here. A good, if unremarkable vocal from Hackett’s drummer Gary O’Toole does benefit from some sound treatment. However I miss P.G.’s definitive vocals on this song. What this version does add is more Hackett on guitar and it really takes off mid-way through with his solos.
Broadway Melody of 1974 – Captures what is great about the original and dials it up a notch! Terrific job by drummer Gary on vocals.
Please Don’t Touch – This is what S.H. refers to as a “Genesis branch”. Politely, songs he brought to the band that they didn’t use so he did solo albums. Apparently this was submitted for ‘Wind and Wuthering’ but they chose ‘Wot Gorilla’ instead. Really? Poor call on the part of Collins, Banks and Rutherford. No wonder the studio follow up to W&W was called “And Then There Were Three” and it was lacking in guitar bite! At any rate, this version is fine and fits in very well here. Not sure Hackett bests his own original but the original was already excellent. The production sounds more distant to me and as such loses some power but still a great song. It’s inclusion is at least very enlightening as a ‘Genesis branch’ and what Hackett brought to the table as a composer and what was lost when he left the band.
Ripples – Hackett rolled the dice on this one. Doesn’t work for me in the choice of the voice. Otherwise, faithful and well executed. Unfortunately makes me miss Phil Collins who remains definitive for this song. Not just by comparison but his vocal has a vulnerability that takes it to the level of greatness.
Eleventh Earl of Mar – Another soft spot showing in this collection compared to the original which was a true showcase for Phil Collins’ growth as a vocalist. The instrumental embellishments are good but not enough to justify inclusion. Again, not bad but if chosen, I expect something more than what is delivered vocally.
A comment on Phil Collins as a drummer - he was vastly underrated for the most part in this area. Yes, he exploded as a singer for both Genesis and as a solo artist. In my opinion, over compensated in this regard. However, as a drummer, he was considerably better than generally credited. There is very good drumming on this album as a whole by Gary O’Toole. But Phil Collins was original and formidable which means that the drumming on all of the originals was unlikely to be surpassed. I happened to have had the good fortune to see him play the very first concert that he fronted Genesis as a vocalist in London, Ontario, Canada in 1976. Tremendous concert and as the ‘other’ drummer on ‘Trick of the Tail’ tour, they secured Bill Bruford! This was one of the best drumming duets ever and for one tour only.
Unquiet Slumbers…/In That Quiet Earth – Steve Hackett brought SO much to Genesis as a composer and the lack of appreciation for that by the other 3 remaining originals will always be unfortunate in my estimation. True, the trio was massive commercially. But artistically, does anyone want to hear songs like ‘Abacab’ or “I Can’t Dance’ ever revisited? Not by me. But, as fate would have it, Hackett would leave just before mega-stardom and this is how it was meant to unfold. As a chief composer for both songs, I cannot imagine a version of either that would be lacking. That remains true here – I cannot find anything lacking and their inclusion, while not revelatory, certainly is justified and executed brilliantly. The soprano sax on the latter song is terrific, if brief.
Afterglow – As much as I love John Wetton as a vocalist, I happen to love the original version of this song because of Phil Collins’ vocal. P.C. nails the vulnerability and while Wetton does majesty very well, this song, possibly Tony Banks best composition, cries out for vulnerability. Not a miss but as a Banks tune, I would have skipped this one. Or have had much more guitar contribution, perhaps even all instrumental? This is more what I would call a cover – respectful and uneventful.
The Lamia – A lovely version – Hackett states on his website notes that he was going for “hymn-like, emotional and erotic at the same time”. Hymn-like fits best to my ears with the casting of Nik Kershaw whose voice fits this song’s arrangment beautifully. Perhaps due to the way ‘The Lamb LDOB’ was recorded with the 4 non-singing members composing together musically and Gabriel writing his lyrics almost separately contributed to the album sometimes lacking a cohesive feel. Bringing these parts more together works well here and the intertwining solos of Hackett with Marillion’s Steve Rothery makes this a special take. Very nicely revisted!
The Chamber of 32 Doors – I always found the original from The Lamb LDOB to be a bit disjointed as a song – more of a musical interlude with story fragments. This version works better as an entity itself and has more of a guitar foundation not unexpectedly. Starting with some light classical touches then moving into a blues tinged guitar introduction, it begins well. The Gabriel-esque vocal of Nad Sylvan works a little better here than his casting in other places, especially as it moves into the “I’d rather trust a countryman than a town man” section. The overdubbed harmonies help to offset the nasal sounding solo voice which I have a bit of trouble with otherwise. Once again, more guitar textures in the background are a big plus and help to elevate this version to more than a cover of an original.
A Tower Struck Down – Another Genesis branch originally released on Steve’s first solo LP. This version is more gothic in its sound and Hackett states that “Genesis was never quite this heavy…: which is true. This betters his own original in that regard. Over the Hackett solo years, he had tunes that I would describe as ‘Hammer Horror song miniatures’ and this is one of his best ones. This harder rocking dark sound was almost absent from the Genesis trio, present only on a few songs like ‘Mama’ and my personal fave ‘Home By The Sea (Parts 1 and 2)’. I would love to have heard what Hackett would have added on guitar to both of those songs. The trio version of Genesis only had one good soloist in Tony Banks and stretching out instrumental parts became increasingly rare as they concentrated on singles to great commercial success but mostly dated songs compositionally. That is why the earlier Genesis tunes like the ones selected on GR2 actually stand the test of time.
Camino Royale – A weak Genesis branch in my opinion. However, it wasn’t that strong a composition to begin with (on Hackett’s solo album “Highly Strung”). And sorry Steve, not one of your better vocals. Another one of the few I would have left off had I been making the calls.
Shadow of the Hierophant – A better Genesis branch and one that surpasses it original. Nice vocal by Amanda Lehmann on this song co-written by Hackett and Rutherford. The purpose of the song seems clearer and more focused even if Steve could have had more wail in his end soloing. A good way to end the vinyl version of GR2.
At the end of the day, would I rather listen to this collection or a collection of the originals? Yes. No.
Truth is wrong question! Instead, does this hold its own as a collective listening experience? Absolutely!
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Genesis Revisited II by Steve Hackett (Audio CD - 2012)