Revisiting Duke - Genesis: It's actually good.

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Eleventh Earl of Mar, May 4, 2016.

  1. Terrapin Station

    Terrapin Station Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC Man
    Or maybe the earlier albums were way too rock?
     
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  2. CJBx7

    CJBx7 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Maryland USA
    Duke and ...And Then There Were Three are probably my favorite Genesis albums overall. ATTWT has a kind of late fall/early winter feel to it that I find alluring, and I feel many of the songs are underrated. Duke has some astounding group interplay, particularly on "Behind the Lines" and "Duke's Travels/Duke's End". "Behind the Lines" is my favorite opening track of all time; the introductory overture just surges with such energy and the theme is simple, yet so powerful. I like how the albums straddle the line between prog and pop. I love many of Genesis' other albums, but those are the ones I go back to the most.
     
  3. ohnothimagen

    ohnothimagen I don't suffer fools or trolls gladly...

    I like side one of Abacab, but IMO the wheels seriously start coming off on side two. All respect to Ahmet Ertegun, since it was his idea, but replacing "You Might Recall" with "Who Dunnit?" wasn't one of his smarter moves. "Man On The Corner" belonged on a Collins solo album, before ending the album on a couple of songs that are just sorta...there. "Dodo"'s all right, though.
     
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  4. I'm the fan who's first Genesis purchase was Abacab -released and purchased the year I graduated High School, so my take on the album is personal and highly subjective. I had heard Duke the year before and enjoyed the singles and artwork, but never warmed up to the rest of the album. That changed over the years and I now enjoy most of the songs on Duke.
     
  5. Detroit Music Fan

    Detroit Music Fan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Detroit
    Side 1 is definitely the stronger side. If they wanted a stronger album, they should've kept Paperlate on it, too. It's still good, though, to me. I like Duke better. Duke has a concept and a suite. Overall the songs are better on Duke. But Abacab is pretty good.
     
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  6. Yeah, a very exciting and different sound that was enjoyed by the many new fans that Abacab attracted. I do agree that it is a divisive album, not that I knew this or cared a lick when I purchased it. Older fans of their progressive albums deride it, younger fans like me enjoy it and it's follow-up 3 sides live and Genesis quite a lot. The sound and production are particularly engaging IMO. Abacab was a future facing album for better or worse depending on where you are coming from as a fan. Duke, excepting the two singles, was a firmly rooted in their past sound to a far greater extant. I like all periods of Genesis, even ATTWT and Duke which are their most transitory albums IMO.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2018
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  7. Dodo / Lurker is an amazing song IMO and probably the closest thing to some of the better songs on Duke. I agree that replacing You Might Recall was a mistake that seriously crippled side 2 of Abacab keeping it out of the "great album" category. But I'll take the "solo" Man on a Corner over the excruciating Misunderstanding any day.
     
  8. Detroit Music Fan

    Detroit Music Fan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Detroit
    Is the universe trying to send me a message? Or is Apple or iTunes Match? I'm enjoying this thread so much I decided I need to listen to Duke. Turn It On!

    I go to iTunes — I'm an iTunes Match user, sometimes I feel like the only one left in the world, I don't want Apple Music streaming service. I want my music stored in the cloud. I go to Artist > Genesis to queue up Duke. No Duke! It's missing! I own Duke and Abacab. In its place though, is the Genesis LP. What the heck! I don't own that. I mean, I should own it. It's fine, better than fine. But I don't own it. It looks like Apple traded albums on me. :realmad: Ugh! And it's the remaster! Sounds like someone screaming in my ears. Who did this to these songs?!? If there were ever an award for worst remaster, this would be at the top of the list. Thank God for YouTube. I know Duke's there.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2018
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  9. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    i guess i come from a different perspective as and then there were three was my first exposure to genesis. i very much liked the album particularly down and out, snowbound and burning rope. i loved duke, i know a lot of lamb guys hated misunderstanding, but the same guys often state i know what i like in your wardrobe as a favourite, so i think that cancels out any criticism of being poppy anyhow lol
    i loved abacab except for the horrendous whodunit. i loved the genesis album, but it was overplayed on the radio, to me mama is a classic.
    i guess genesis went from prog rock to prog pop to a kind of undefined pop rock thing. i liked invisible touch, but the direction had moved too poppy in parts. we can't dance was ok, but not a favourite.
    if it gives any perspective, my favourite genesis albums are nursery cryme, lamb lies down, and then there were three and duke ... i have always like a band to make something different than what they did prior, even if i don't like the album, i like the fact that they were avoiding a type-cast formulaic set up is important.
    i understand that some folks may not like post gabriel, and some folks may not like post hackett, but what i never understood was the outright hatred people had towards collins from those camps. why would anyone want phil to be peter? and those same folks that hate phil and scream pop, never say anything about peter's trips into pop world.
     
  10. MikeVielhaber

    MikeVielhaber Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cypress, TX
    Well, Albums sales and hits do not prove anything related to focus. The only thing that would would be an admissipn by Phil. Otherwise, it's just speculation.

    If Phil was always more popular, which I never disputed and in fact had thought to add it to my previous post, then how is it a negative on him (and his focus?) with Genesis that Invisible Touch sold less than NJR? It's not exactly apples to apples and yet Invisible Touch still sold more than any other solo release and more than any other Genesis release. Genesis incorporated two other songwriting voices and instrumentalists. While Mike had some significantly success on his own, Tony never did and Genesis never had a major hit that was not in part or entirely written by Phil (although he claims that he had little to do with Follow You Follow Me but he is credited).

    I don't see the 4 top 5 hits you're referring to for But Seriously. I see 3 top 5 and one just outside the top 20. Maybe you're including the live version of Do You Remember? off the Serious Hits album? Even if you were to use that one, Which is a reach, thats still 4 hits to 5 hits on IT. Would need at least 6 to be more.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2018
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  11. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    it would be funny if phil had put sussudio etc on genesis albums, imagine the outcry from the prog purists lol
    it's probably better that he explored his motown/pop love during those solo albums
     
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  12. mx20

    mx20 Enthusiast

    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    Despite the "new-fangled" production techniques used on Abacab (very much intentionally), that album has some KILLER Genesis songs on it! Me & Sarah Jane, Dodo/Lurker, Keep It Dark and even No Reply At All (which is much better than the annoying Paperlate, imo) would probably all be on my Genesis mixtape... As if one cassette tape would be long enough for a Genesis mix :)
     
  13. MikeVielhaber

    MikeVielhaber Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cypress, TX
    @Detroit Music Fan also to note, 5 singles were released from Invisible Touch of only 8 tracks, all 5 going top 5. The only other songs on the album were a 10 minute song, an instrumental and "Anything She Does".
     
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  14. overdrivethree

    overdrivethree Forum Resident

    I've said it around here before and I'll say it again - I don't get why Abacab is always pinned as this super high-tech '80s production full of gated drum sounds. It really isn't. Phil has a pretty wide open, roomy drum sound for most of it (which I like), and the gated drum is mainly deployed as an effect, most obviously on "Whodunnit." (I also don't mind "Whodunnit" - it's like an abstract new wave version of "The Grand Parade of Lifeless Packaging.")

    I think Abacab is "leaner and meaner" than anything they did previously, although Duke has some pretty punchy moments as well. I don't get the hate for it.
     
  15. CJBx7

    CJBx7 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Maryland USA

    I think Abacab is definitely a progressive rock album. It's NOT "prog-rock", though. Although the songs are more pop-oriented in structure, there is a lot of innovation and experimentation taking place in Abacab. In the interviews for the 2007 remasters, the members remark that they felt it was time to break with the past, be brave and try something new. Abacab stands as a reinvention for the band. It strikes me as being a very modernist album. For instance, "Keep It Dark" has abrupt synthesizer blasts and different time signatures stacked on top of each other, influenced by New Wave sensibilities. "Who Dunnit?", a frequent target of fan derision, is actually a purposefully absurd piece with a nonsense lyric and is more dependent than ever on synths to generate an atmosphere of tension and disconnection. Genesis was definitely going into new territory with this album. Although I will agree that the last two or three songs are not the strongest, overall it's a high quality album and a milestone in their output, and deserves more than being seen as Genesis "selling out".
     
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  16. CJBx7

    CJBx7 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Maryland USA
    Prog purists :laugh: They would have a fit!

    I've never understood why anyone would expect a band to keep churning out the same kind of music, even if their hearts aren't in it and they want to do something else. You should see some of the comments on YouTube...
     
  17. gojikranz

    gojikranz Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sacramento
    I love the first 5 tracks of abacab some of the best genesis (and given that is more than half the album nudges it over duke for me where I primarily like the duke suite which is half the album spread over the whole), I generally like the next two tracks but then the album just falls of a cliff not bad but just forgettable and in this way the album leaves little impression after the great start it is very unfortunate. swapping in some tunes from 3X3 would probably have helped a lot.
     
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  18. Terrapin Station

    Terrapin Station Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC Man
    " Prog" is an abbreviation of "progressive."
     
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  19. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    Oh i have, it's insane. One guy was making out it was some collins conspiracy
    Then there's the roger and Dave guys on floyd posts haha
     
  20. ohnothimagen

    ohnothimagen I don't suffer fools or trolls gladly...

    Fair enough:cheers: I can dig that kind of attachment to albums.
    By my definition of Progressive Rock, which may be a bit broader than some others', all of Genesis' albums are Prog, even "pop" stuff like Invisible Touch.
     
  21. the post-Duke albums might be considered "smart pop" too.

    Banks's synths and keys became just a *bit* more subdued after Duke. Not in playing time across the span of an album mind you, but as an instrument that leads the entire song.

    Phil's vocals lines took over from ABACAB onward, leading songs where Banks's synths once did in songs like "Behind The Lines", "Undertow", and "Deep In The Motherlode"
     
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  22. Even in the excellent "Home By The Sea" - listen to how Phil's vocals are mixed slightly higher than Tony's keys.
     
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  23. audiotom

    audiotom Ground Control to Major Tom

    Location:
    New Orleans La USA
    no matter what - I just do not like this record

    sorry

    nails on a chalk board

    and Misunderstanding...


    Love everything up thru ATTWT

    this transition album tries to tip it's toe in both oceans
     
  24. bRETT

    bRETT Forum Resident

    Location:
    Boston MA
    I'd say Dodo/Lurker and Sarah Jane are as "proggy" as anything Genesis ever did, and the title track has (aside from Waiting Room) the only long improvisation ever to appear on a Genesis album.
     
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  25. ohnothimagen

    ohnothimagen I don't suffer fools or trolls gladly...

    It seems to me that Tony's keyboard playing -at least as far as how he layered and arranged his keyboard parts went- reached its peak on Duke. I'd daresy it's one of Genesis' most keyboard driven albums. I can totally see why it's Tony Banks' favourite Genesis album. The guitar really takes a backseat in lot of places, more textural chordal/arpeggio parts. On parts of And Then There Were Three... it sounds like Mike was consciously trying to ape Hackett's style (the solo in "Burning Rope" for example) where on Duke -and beyond- he was more himself.
    To me, "Abacab" sorta follows in the tradition of something like "Cinema Show", with the long keyboard solo at the end. Was that whole jam in "Abacab" improvised? I must admit, it sorta became a whole other thing entirely when they played it live.
     

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