Wind and Wuthering (1976)


 
1.Eleventh Earl of Mar 2.One For the Vine 3.Your Own Special Way 4.Wot Gorilla? 5.All in a Mouses Night 6.Blood on the Rooftops 7. a)Unquiet Slumbers for the Sleepers b)In That Quiet Earth 8.Afterglow

 

The second, and last Genesis album to feature the four piece of Collins-Banks-Rutherford-Hackett. This one actually came out only 10 months after the first. This record shows the band ever so slightly moving into more pop, radio friendly territory. But only slightly. Whereas they do well in this particular area, I must say that I miss some of the diversity that they showed on Trick of the Tail. Although this album is a very good album, it fails to pack the same punch, for me at least, as its predecessor.

It’s always a bit difficult to come out and admit when you don’t agree with the masses. I have to admit that there are parts of this record that many fans love, that I simply never understood. The two opening tracks Eleventh Earl of Mar and One for the Vine are prime examples. Both of these songs have their moments, but for me, they never seem to catch fire. They’re a bit too long, too drawn out, and too monotonous. I can find bits of each of these tracks that I like, but such moments are rare. One for the Vine in particular just sounds too thick and plodding.

Once I get past these two tracks, I will admit that everything else is quite good. My favorite has to be Blood on the Rooftops which, I think, is mainly a Steve Hackett song. It certainly features some stunning acoustic guitar work. It’s quite a sad piece, but sad songs have their place in popular music. It’s quite beautiful as well. Also worth mentioning is Your Own Special Way. Now, I’m not sure, but this song may have been released as a single. It’s actually what one would consider a love song. We must remember that Genesis were not into ‘love songs’ at this point in their career. This was probably their first, and they do a superb job. It’s over six minutes, which kind of dampens it a bit, but they were still learning.

Another overlooked gem is the instrumental Wot Gorilla?. This is another ‘first’ for this band. This tracks has Phil Collins’ drumming in the forefront showing us just how excellent a percussionist he is. Paired with Tony Banks electric keyboard and synthesizer parts, this song was also a forerunner of things to come. On some latter Genesis albums, this style would be featured more regularly. I’m guessing it was probably a bit of a shock at the time. I was always a tiny bit surprised that they never revived this number for latter day shows.

Genesis would rarely ever release a bad album. This album, fortunately, doesn’t fit into that category. I must say, though, that I find this one of the least appealing of their entire catalog. It sounds a bit too much like A Trick of the Tail’s younger, weaker brother. Even though it really does have plenty of fine material featured.

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