This was a pleasant surprise. Firstly, cards on the table time I am a fan of Genesis up to the self titled album of 1983. I am not a fan of MTV era Genesis and this kind of clouds my judgement.
The sound on this live recording is as you would expect terrific, rounded, good bass and lows end drums. The set opens with a blistering "Dukes Intro", Turn it on Again is slower than I remember, it lacks a little energy to these ears. No Son of Mine and Land of Confusion are pretty good too despite being from the period where I disowned Genesis.
In the Cage medley like Turn it On Again seems less urgent than the version on the criminally underrated "3 Sides Live". Afterfglow remains a thing of beauty, Hold on My Heart is an ok track done well. Home by the Sea for this reviewer was one of the sets highlights - one of the now rare Genesis epics, well performed. Follow You Follow Me loses some of the warmth it possesses on another underrated album Then There Were Three - but again not bad for a live show. Firth of Fifth misses the Hacket touch, and some things should be done properly or not at all. A masterpiece pared down like a Readers Digest edition of a great book. Shame.
Mama stands up well, I can imagine it would look great on that amazing set in the cd artwork. It's as big and percussive as it should be. The most pleasant surprise was the inclusion of the sublime Ripples from Trick of the Tail, this performance was precise, the instrumental passage spot on.
Now for the bad stuff. Throwing it All Away isn't bad, just unremarkable. Domino is another latter day epic, but this ones not fit to be mentioned in the same breath as Suppers Ready or Firth of Fifth, I personally find it a little dull - did they really curtail Firth of Fifth to include this?.
Drum solos (or duos to be precise) on record - no thanks, I love Chester and Phil's playing but who wants drum solos in this day and age? Not I. Los Endos is very welcome though - it lacks the impact of Seconds out.
Some perfunctory late period Genesis to please the latecomers to one of Englands greatest bands follows. Then the lovely Carpet Crawlers, a weird way to finish a show. Bring back the Knife!
Overall I feel that this represents a nice grab bag souvenir of this summers shows, those tracks which when compared to the peerless Seconds Out and the undervalued Three Sides Live seem to be clinical but lack some of the urgency on the older albums. The early era songs desperately miss Steve Hackets touch.
But that said It's a good album and the latter era material has never sounded better. If the mooted "Old Genesis" reunion takes place I'll be there salivating. I was there at Milton Keynes in the rain in '82 and I want more.