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    Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
    Genesis - Trespass CD (album) cover




    Symphonic Prog

    4.15 | 2278 ratings

    From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

    Special Collaborator
    Prog-Folk Team
    4 stars In the late 1960s, CAT STEVENS was a pop sensation in his native UK, a purveyor of catchy 2 minute numbers that were not even as deep as wide. Then he was stricken with a grave illness and spent months in a sanitarium, during which time he wrote more than 3 dozen songs that would mark his transformation into a serious singer songwriter. The first recorded evidence was the brilliant "Mona Bone Jakon", which, while later overshadowed by the mega success of its two successors, projects some of his most intensely personal and endearingly self conscious visions. Wait, this is a review of GENESIS "Trespass"?. Ok scratch the above. On second thought, let's leave it here because of three connections: they were both released in 1970, that Cat album included another cat named PETER GABRIEL as guest flutist, and of paramount significance, "Trespass" is GENESIS' "Mona Bone jakon".

    The 1969 polar opposite to the lunar landing was the abomination known as "From Genesis to Revelation", which proved that distinctly average material could be rendered utterly abysmal by adding simpering strings. In the fallout from this debut, GENESIS shed their naff producer and got stuck in a thatched cottage for a long weekend with a possessed Grundig that had "In the Court of the Crimson King" on auto repeat or whatever it was called back then. That explains why "Trespass" spends over 42 minutes absolutely not sounding like that classic.

    What "Trespass" does do is establish the Peter Gabriel fronted GENESIS arrangements and lyricism even while two ultimately key members were yet to join the ensemble. Gabriel's voice is less domineering here, but Banks' organ, Phillips' 12 string, and the vaguely folk and epic centered themes all announce that GENESIS was done with pop music forever...er...for a while. The reason "Trespass" is generally not acknowledged as in the peak period of the group is that it lacks the bombast that would mark that era. Only the closer, "The Knife", speaks to that power , and its closest relative might be "The Cage" from the Lamb album 4 years later. The rest is more understated but just as personal, and songs like "White Mountain" and "Visions of Angels" bare a pithy personality that was soon abandoned.

    At the risk of a breach, I find "Trespass" to be more enjoyable overall than the next two GENESIS albums, though it is ultimately eclipsed by "Selling England...". It's the perfect launchpad into an exploration of several prominent careers and their influences.

    kenethlevine | 4/5 |


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