Lion of the Blogosphere


Gozo thinks that the best Genesis albums ever, or at least the ones most worthy of respect, are The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway, Nursery Cryme and Foxtrot.

Genesis albums predating Selling England by the Pound sound to me like they were made by a bunch of kids who would have been playing Dungeons & Dragons had they been born a few years later. (Not that there’s anything wrong with playing Dungeons & Dragons. Awesome game, it was.)

The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway: As you know, this is a double-LP concept album and is supposed to be about a Puerto Rican kid who somehow is transported to an alternate reality where he searches for his brother John, who may or may not be a real person. There are some great prog-rock riffs, but it’s saddled with nonsense lyrics at best (written by Peter Gabriel while he was dropping LSD), and at worst the lyrics are downright horrible. The first LP is mostly pretty good, but the second LP has a lot of weird sound effects and those downright horrible lyrics I mentioned earlier. The other members of the band kicked Peter Gabriel out after that album (or something like that).

The concert footage above, with post-Peter-Gabriel Genesis playing “In the Cage” from The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway combined with a medley of prog-rock instrumentals from Wind & Wuthering is pretty epic. I love how Phil Collins leaves the lead-singer station during the instrumental section and heads over to the drums. There’s a similar live version on the album Three Sides Live. The live version is far better than the studio albums.

The three best Genesis studio albums are Selling England by the Pound (the first album in which Genesis finally matured), Trick of the Tail and Wind & Wuthering (the first two albums after Peter Gabriel left). The quality of Genesis degraded after Phil Collins pushed them away from prog-rock to a more jazzy/pop sound. I never listen to any of the albums after Abacab.

Best live albums, both awesome albums, are Seconds Out and Three Sides Live.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

August 23, 2016 at 11:07 pm

Posted in Music videos

39 Responses

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  1. Nothing wrong with Selling England By the Pound, but Foxtrot IMHO is superior, and is just as polished. I also agree that Lamb Lies Down on Broadway is bloated and overrated. Of the post-Gabriel albums, you are correct that Trick of the Tail and Wind and Wuthering are great. I would also highly recommend the next album, And Then There Were Three, as well. It is their first foray into a more “pop” sound, but it is complex and interesting pop — “Power Prog,” if you will.


    August 24, 2016 at 12:31 am

  2. Peter was quite the performance artist.

    K.l. Asher

    August 24, 2016 at 1:26 am

  3. I believe Trump is behind by a substantial margin, probably ~4 points. But some polls are obviously rigged.

    Reuters is now showing Trump down by 12, after it had been showing the race tightening in it’s last two polls. This is obvious rigging.

    Here are polls I attach at least some credibility to: Fox, UPI, Ras and Gravis. Call them “The Otis Index”. Current Otis Index has Trump down by 4.5. By next week, the Otis Index should have Hil’s margin down to +2.

    Ignore RCP and the HuffPo aggregator, the Otis Index gives a more accurate state of the race.

    Otis the Sweaty

    August 24, 2016 at 2:05 am

    • “Reuters is now showing Trump down by 12, after it had been showing the race tightening in it’s last two polls. This is obvious rigging.”

      Happened to catch Limbaugh in the car today while running an errand. Seems Reuters changed their polling to not allow for anyone to say “undecided.” So my guess is a lot of people leaning Trump but saying Hillary for now because social pressure.


      August 24, 2016 at 3:29 pm

  4. I love it. First Huey Lewis, now Genesis!

    Bill ARTHURS

    August 24, 2016 at 2:27 am

    • I assume next up is Whitney Houston.

      Whitey Whiteman III

      August 24, 2016 at 12:50 pm

  5. selling england by th epound and foxtrot were very cool albums but lamb lies down on broadway was boring. it fit the trend of those drawn out meandering prog rock albums that were all over the early 1970s. if you think genesis is dorky listen to Yes or even worse Rush most of their shit is not listenable.

    james n.s.w

    August 24, 2016 at 2:51 am

  6. I’ve been a big Genesis fan ever since the release of their 1980 album, Duke. Before that, I really didn’t understand any of their work. Too artsy, too intellectual. It was on Duke where Phil Collins’ presence became more apparent. I think Invisible Touch was the group’s undisputed masterpiece. It’s an epic meditation on intangibility. At the same time, it deepens and enriches the meaning of the preceding three albums….

    Gilbert Ratchet

    August 24, 2016 at 7:36 am

  7. That was God-aweful.

    I cant imagine anyone leaving the house for that mess. Even assuming that the lyrics made any sense, who could understand what Collins is spitting at 6:10? And in a crowd, over a distorted sound system?

    I wonder what the actual rationale was for the people in attendance if we could do back and find them.

    Lion of the Turambar

    August 24, 2016 at 9:42 am

    • People don’t go to rock concerts to hear the lyrics for the first time and figure out what they mean.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      August 24, 2016 at 2:58 pm

  8. Trump winning by 2 in the latest FLA poll. Here is an interesting statement from the write up:

    “Trump leads among white voters 49 to 33 percent, but trails with African Americans 68 to 20 percent, as well as Hispanics 50 to 40 percent. ”

    Lot of Cubans in FLA, so Trump’s numbers with Hispanics don’t raise eyebrows, but 20% of the black vote?

    Not saying I buy the cross tabs, actually, I am explicitly saying I DON’T buy the cross tabs, but Trump up by 2 in FLA shows that as the national polls converge, Trump will ultimately pull ahead in the states as well.

    Looking forward to tomorrow’s Rasmussen poll. Hopefully Trump is ahead but even if he isn’t, he should be ahead in next weeks.

    I want Trump leading in the Otis Index by the first debate in late Sept.

    Otis the Sweaty

    August 24, 2016 at 11:24 am

    • i’ll add my own non-sequitur.

      it’s funny how people use the term “marxist” to label those who would redistribute wealth from those who’ve earned it to those who’ve earned nothing. (whether there are any such people at all doesn’t matter.)

      but marx was never in favor of such redistribution.

      he favored redistribution from those who did NOT earn it to those who did. this is what he meant by “expropriation of surplus value”.

      so the whole marx question rests on what “earn” means.

      yakov knows.

      the USSR had no “financial sector”. it simply didn’t exist. and neither did any value transference work of any kind afaik.

      and as lion has noted many times, it’s doubtful than anyone can do any work worth more than a few hundred k per year, that today most of the rich and well paid are engaged in value transference, and that libertarians have the a priori that the market measures the value of whatever one does perfectly or better than anything else conceivable…thus el chapo has done exactly as much good for the world as other billionaires…that he sells drugs is immaterial…people want drugs…he satisfies their want.

      also there is the vulgar assumption on the part of libertarians and americans in general that if one works very hard for his money then he has earned it.

      but that’s NOT what “earn” means.

      1. in order to “earn” one’s money, he must create value. not market value. use value.

      2. one may work very hard at transferring value.

      3. the effort required to create value may be artificially high…medical doctors and engineers use only a small % of what they are required to learn.

      4. marx’s labor theory of value is only approximate. some gifted few can create a lot of value without breaking a sweat, so to say.

      Trumpocalypse Now

      August 24, 2016 at 7:34 pm

  9. Best Genesis album ever:


    August 24, 2016 at 12:12 pm

  10. Invisible Touch (Atlantic; 1986) is the group’s undisputed masterpiece. It’s an epic meditation on intangibility, at the same time it deepens and enriches the meaning of the preceding three albums. It has a resonance that keeps coming back at the listener, and the music is so beautiful that it’s almost impossible to shake off because every song makes some connection about the unknown or the spaces between people (“Invisible Touch”), questioning authoritative control whether by domineering lovers or by government (“Land of Confusion”), or by meaningless repetition (“Tonight Tonight Tonight”). All in all it ranks with the finest rock and roll achievements of the decade and the mastermind behind this album, along of course with the brilliant ensemble playing of Banks, Collins and Rutherford, is Hugh Padgham, who has never found as clear and crisp and modern a sound as this. You can practically hear every nuance of every instrument.
    In terms of lyrical craftsmanship and sheer songwriting skills this album hits a new peak of professionalism. Take the lyrics to “Land of Confusion”, in which a singer addresses the problem of abusive political authority. This is laid down with a groove funkier and blacker than anything Prince or Michael Jackson- or any other black artist of recent years, for that matter, has come up with. Yet as danceable as the album is, it also has a stripped-down urgency that not even the overrated Bruce Springsteen can equal. As an observer of love’s failings Collins beats out the Boss again and again, reaching new heights of emotional honesty on “In Too Deep”; yet it also showcases Collins’ clowny, prankish, unpredictable side. It’s the most moving pop song of the 1980s about monogamy and commitment. “Anything She Does” (which echoes the J. Geils Band’s “Centerfold” but is more spirited and energetic) starts off side two and after that the album reaches its peak with “Domino”, a two-part song. Part one, “In the Heat of the Night”, is full of sharp, finely drawn images of despair and it’s paired with “The Last Domino”, which fights it with an expression of hope. This song is extremely uplifting. The lyrics are as positive and affirmative as anything I’ve heard in rock.

    Phil Collins’ solo efforts seem to be more commercial and therefore more satisfying in a narrower way, especially No Jacket Required and songs like “In the Air Tonight” and “Against All Odds” (though that song was overshadowed by the masterful movie from which it came) and “Take Me Home” and “Sussudio” (great, great song; a personal favorite) and his remake of “You Can’t Hurry Love”, which I’m not alone in thinking is better than the Supremes’ original. But I also think that Phil Collins works better within the confines of the group than as a solo artist and I stress the word artist. In fact it applies to all three of the guys, because Genesis is still the best, most exciting band to come out of England in the 1980s.


    August 24, 2016 at 12:53 pm

    • “AgaInst all Odds” (the movie) was a reprise of the 1947 noir thriller “Out of the Past,” with Robert Mitchum and Kirk Douglas. Jane Greer, the love interest in the original, and what a babe!, also appeared in the ’84 film.

      Mel Belli

      August 24, 2016 at 7:45 pm

    • I’ve listened to this album and like it, but I have to say I haven’t put nearly as much thought into it as you have. I have no idea what most songs mean. I just don’t pay attention to lyrics for some reason or even try to figure out the meaning of a song.

      Phil Collins was asked by Letterman what Sussudio meant and Phil said it doesn’t mean anything. He just made it up.


      August 24, 2016 at 11:50 pm

    • I like the song Inside out.


      August 25, 2016 at 12:00 am

    • Thanks, Patrick Bateman


      August 26, 2016 at 9:31 pm

  11. The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway is terrific musically, but also tells a beautiful Christian story of redemption: the hero sacrifices himself to save his brother even though his brother has betrayed him again and again.

    Prog masterpiece!


    August 24, 2016 at 1:07 pm

  12. I must admit that the new Hipster fad of putting speakers in old vintage suitcases is pretty cool:


    August 24, 2016 at 3:14 pm

  13. Prog rock. (rolls eyes)


    August 24, 2016 at 3:30 pm

  14. My blog is now publicly available, although comment registration does not begin until tomorrow.

    Notice that in the first post I’ve acquired the talents of a heavyweight writer to act as my co-host…

    The Undiscovered Jew

    August 24, 2016 at 4:29 pm

      • Congrats on the new blog. Please let us know when you have a substantive post to read and I’ll be sure to promote it.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        August 24, 2016 at 4:52 pm

      • is it greg cockring?

        Trumpocalypse Now

        August 24, 2016 at 5:40 pm

      • Congrats on the new blog.


        I have extensive material coming on Friday September 2nd to the Sunday of Labor Day weekend when many people will be off work, although I think you will be most interested on my entry on September 9th which deals with class in a way you’ve never seen before.

        In the meantime, I am going to publish instructions tomorrow about how to register and comment without moderation.

        Since I’d like as many people to register to comment in real time as possible (since this will aid the flow of conversation for readers and limit how much moderation I have to do) could you link on LOTB to the commenting instructions tomorrow? Tomorrow’s entry will only be technical commenting guidelines, and this will help my readership get started with the blog.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        August 24, 2016 at 7:10 pm

      • Sure thing, but I think that even with commenters being registered, allowing un-moderated comments on an alt-right/HBD blog is not going to work out.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        August 24, 2016 at 10:20 pm

      • Please nudge Moldbug into being less prolix on your site.

        West Coast IA

        August 24, 2016 at 7:48 pm

      • I considered moderating this comment to keep his secret, but he says he favors un-moderated comments🙂

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        August 24, 2016 at 10:22 pm

      • Sure thing, but I think that even with commenters being registered, allowing un-moderated comments on an alt-right/HBD blog is not going to work out.

        We will see.

        Sometime in the evening tomorrow I will post a link on your website with a link to the instructions.

        Afterwards, I and my co-host, will handle comments with an iron fist.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        August 24, 2016 at 10:30 pm

  15. music is prole.

    why? because it suborns the emotions to testify to its meaningfulness…when it’s guilty…meaningless.

    as chomsky said of MLK, i paraphrase…”i can’t stand to listen to him. i agree with him, but the style is just…because it’s not just the facts and logic…it’s emotion and ‘poetry’ used in an attempt to convince.”

    but von karajan’s studio recordings and Thelonius Monk Trio are the best of a silly thing…like arnold was the best bodybuilder.

    Trumpocalypse Now

    August 24, 2016 at 4:45 pm

  16. I’ve always been partial to “Easy Lover” with that guy from Earth, Wind and Fire. Excellent song.

    Half Canadian

    August 24, 2016 at 4:45 pm

  17. Hugh Padgham produced next an even less conceptual effort, simply called Genesis (Atlantic; 1983), and though it’s a fine album a lot of it now seems too derivative for my tastes. Padgham does a brilliant job of producing, but the material is weaker than usual and you can sense the strain. It opens with the autobiographical “Mama” that’s both strange and touching, though I couldn’t tell if the singer was talking about his actual mother or to a girl he likes to call Mama. “That’s All” is a lover’s lament about being ignored and beaten down by an unreceptive partner; despite the despairing tone it’s got a bright sing-along melody that makes the song less depressing than it probably needed to be. “That’s All” is the best tune on the album, but Phil’s voice is strongest on “House by the Sea” whose lyrics are, however, too stream-of-consciousness to make much sense. It might be about growing up and accepting adulthood but it’s unclear; at any rate, its second instrumental part puts the song more in focus for me and Mike Banks gets to show off his virtuosic guitar skills while Tom Rutherford washes the tracks over with dreamy synthesizers, and when Phil repeats the song’s third verse at the end it can give you chills.


    August 24, 2016 at 5:11 pm

  18. I never listen to any of the albums after Abacab.

    Then how can we take you seriously? Invisible Touch (1986) produced 5 Top-10 hits.


    August 24, 2016 at 11:41 pm

    • Just because Genesis became more commercially successful doesn’t mean their music got better.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      August 25, 2016 at 7:23 am

      • Yeahhhhh, they sold out, maaaaaaaaan


        August 25, 2016 at 3:28 pm

  19. Nice post, and great to see someone remembers Genesis. I’m old enough to have seen them lived on the “Duke” tour and have been a fan ever since.

    But I’ll never understand the enthusiasm over “Selling England.” Sure, they finally got a professional sound, but there are too many songs that don’t work for me, most notably “Epping Forest.” In fact, along with “Trespass,” this is my least favorite of all the early Genesis LPs. I even like the first one better.

    I’ll take “Foxtrot” and “Nursery Crime,” which are close to 100 percent strong, song-wise. They might not be the cleanest-sounding LPs ever, but what they lack in production gloss they make up for in originality. Who else came up with songs like “Hogweed,” “Friday,” “Harold,” or even the off-kilter ballad “Harlequin?” Plus, “Supper’s Ready” is the rare tour-de-force that lives up to its press notices.

    Days of Broken Arrows

    August 28, 2016 at 6:21 pm

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