Selling England by the Pound - Genesis

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Selling England by the Pound - Genesis

Progressive Rock - StudioRecording - 1 CD(s) - Label: Atco, Charisma - Distributor: Arvato Services, EMI Operations/CEVA Logistics - Released: 01/08/1...

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Review of "Selling England by the Pound - Genesis"

published 18/08/2001 | mikeydred
Member since : 16/01/2001
Reviews : 369
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Excellent
Pro An improvement on Foxtrot - More Great Songs
Cons Phil Collins first vocal , but it's not too bad
very helpful
Originality
Quality and consistency of tracks
Cover / Inlay Design and Content
Lyrics
How does it compare to the artist's other releases

"Me Im Just A Lawn Mower"

In late 1973 after the holding operation that was the excellent “Genesis Live”, they got their first major commercial breakthrough in “Selling England By The Pound”, complete with hit single (their first) the oddly titled “I Know What I Like(In Your Wardrobe)”.

This marked a new beginning for the band , and they ditched Paul Whitehead as cover artist in favour of Betty Swanson, who still managed to convey a very “English but eccentric ” feel to the package. The sound on the album is improved, the playing and compositions more confident. The only slight downer for a lot of folk will be that this is the first album where Phil Collins was featured on lead vocals on a song, the appropriately named “More Fool Me”. I’ve always considered Collins to be one of the best drummers in the world but he has foisted some of the worst MOR dross in the world on us since he started singing, but that’s just my opinion.

The album opens with “Dancing with the Moonlit Knight”, Gabriel starting the song singing unaccompanied, while the band join in slowly. The song builds and builds until a huge loping riff takes over and there is some stunning guitar work from Hackett. Hearing this bodes well for the rest of the album.

The next song is the hit single “I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe)”, starting with an ominous synthesiser / lawnmower sound and featuring Gabriel’s west country accent to great effect. It contains the truly great couplet:

“When the sun beats down and I lie on the grass, I can always hear them talk.
Me? I’m just a lawn mower, you can tell me by the way I walk”

Work that one out! I never have, but it’s a truly great record.

Next up is the “Firth of Fifth” , introduced with an excellent grandiose piano sequence from Tony Banks. This is heavily keyboard influenced and shows Banks’ capabilities off to excellent effect.

“More Fool Me” follows. Phil Collins on vocals. It’s a quiet closer to the first part of the album, not bad just unobtrusive.

The epic song on the album is “The Battle of Epping Forest” introduced by martial drums and pipes, and based on a gangland battle that leaves all the perpetrators dead and allows Gabriel to wild on his vocal characterisations. A truly wonderful and entertaining eleven minutes.

This is followed by an instrumental interlude the aptly named “After The Ordeal” and then the final big track “The Cinema Show” , another big production, which starts off slowly and builds up featuring all the band to excellent effect before segueing into “Aisle of Plenty” on which Gabriel sings his shopping list, just to show you they are not really pretentious. Genesis were always the progressive rock band who commanded respect because they never took it too seriously, and ended up producing some of the best music of the seventies.

The quality of the music on this album still sees the band in the ascendant, a remarkable achievement.

Well worth a listen, and you should be able to track this down on mid price.

I stick a link to the sound samples on my detailed profile if you want to check it out.


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Comments on this review

  • belinda9 published 18/08/2001
    Well written op, well done.
  • Bigbaz published 18/08/2001
    You must have 1 extensive record collection, not all in good taste I might add lol. I see you have had a visit from mafia...Baz
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Product Information : Selling England by the Pound - Genesis

Manufacturer's product description

Progressive Rock - StudioRecording - 1 CD(s) - Label: Atco, Charisma - Distributor: Arvato Services, EMI Operations/CEVA Logistics - Released: 01/08/1994, 08/1994 - 724383977727

Product Details

EAN: 724383977727

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