Review: Phil Collins – Face Value (1981)

In February 1981, Phil Collins’ first solo album “Face Value” was released. It went straight to number 1 in the UK charts and to number 7 in the US. His debut was his gateway into superstardom and with “In The Air Tonight” it includes his signature track. So let’s take a closer look at the album that turned Phil Collins from Genesis front man into one of the biggest solo artists of the 1980’s.

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Phil Collins, Hyde Park, 30 June 2017

Genesis has always been my favourite band and Phil Collins has always been my musical hero. Being a drummer myself, I admired him from early on. His fourth solo album “…But Seriously” came out around the time I was born, “Another Day In Paradise” was my lullaby. Phil always was my hero. I caught him up two times on the “First Final Farewell Tour” in 2004 and 2005 and then again with Genesis in 2007. Boy, was I happy to see my five favourite musicians. It was one of the best concerts of my life, if not the best.

After that tour, Phil had some serious health problems. He cannot play the drums anymore and he needs a walking stick. I read his wonderful autobiography “Not Dead Yet” from 2016 and was surprised when shortly afterwards the tour of the same name was announced. Phil would only sit on a stool and sing and instead of long-time drummer Chester Thompson, Phil’s 16 year old son Nicholas would play the drums. Did I want to see this show?

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Two eras of Genesis? The development of a rock band (2015)

Two eras of Genesis - The development of a rock band by Philipp Röttgers

Genesis is one of the most successful British rock bands, hands down. And a band with a long and diverse career that was able to allow all its members to have also long and diverse solo careers (and in some cases very successful, too). Genesis always seemed to have an invisible touch on their listeners and fans. Starting off as a progressive rock band in the early 1970s with singer Peter Gabriel and his strange costumes and masks, the band changed into a pop band with single hits in the 1980s after he left and drummer Phil Collins took over the microphone. At least that is the common conception. Philipp Röttgers takes a look beyond and asks if this change even exists or if there is some kind of misunderstanding. He turns it on again and analyzes certain songs from both “eras”, takes a look at live performances, music videos, album covers and press and fan reviews. He runs through the band’s history and also includes the solo careers to find out if their image should be renewed.

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