If you are a fan of Genesis, or have followed them in the least bit over the last 35+ years, the story behind 1976's Trick of the Tail should be very familiar to you. Original singer Peter Gabriel left the band after the tour for The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway to pursue a solo career, and the band was left trying to fill his shoes with a suitable replacement. This job ultimately went to drummer Phil Collins, who crept out from behind the drum kit to fill the lead vocal slot as well as handle all the drum work on Trick of the Tail, a stunning release that showed the band had not lost a step after the loss of frontman Gabriel. Instrumentally brilliant, and with an even new found sense of melodicism, perhaps brought on by Collins' smoother voice, Trick of the Tail surprised a lot of people back in the day who thought that the band might crumble without the charismatic Gabriel, but Genesis, and especially Collins, were up to the task.
There's no weak tracks at all on this one, and this new remaster gives new sparkle to these melodic progressive rock classics. Whether it be the more aggressive, proggy material like "Dance on a Volcano", "Squonk", or the fusiony instrumental "Los Endos", or the more lush & pastoral numbers like "Entangled", "Mad Mad Moon, and "Ripples", OR the whimsical, British feel of "Robbery, Assault and Battery" and the title track, there's something here for everyone, and shows Genesis as becoming a truly well rounded machine. Tony Banks' array of keyboards (Hammond, Moog, Mellotron, piano) flows through every track, and the wide assortment of guitar tones from Steve Hackett adds the perfect balance, giving Collins and Mike Rutherford plenty of room to lay down their intricate rhythms under. Collins' vocal performance is quite solid throughout, and although he at times sounds a tad like Gabriel, probably due to the thick British accent, he definitely has a softer and more melodic style, which adapted itself nicely to the songs the band were writing at the time.
This 2 disc set includes a bonus DVD that has the entire album in 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS, as well as a new interview with Collins, Rutherford, Banks, and Hackett, who talk about the album and that time in the history of the band. Of real interest though is the 1976 live concert film that features Bill Bruford on drums, who helped out the band on their maiden voyage with Phil in the vocal slot. This 43 minute show has always been a teaser for what the full show must have been like, but it's an enjoyable watch, with the band red-hot, lots of atmosphere, and plenty of exciting drum duels between Collins and Bruford.
If you own the early 90's remaster of Trick of the Tail, which quite frankly sounded pretty good as well, this one offers a slight improvement to a richer and brighter sound, plus you get all the added goodies on the DVD. Reason enough to plunk down the cash in my opinion.
1. Dance on a Volcano
4. Mad Man Moon
5. Robbery, Assault and Battery
7. Trick of the Tail
8. Los Endos
1. Dance on a Volcano [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
2. Entangled [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
3. Squonk [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
4. Mad Man Moon [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
5. Robbery, Assault and Battery [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
6. Ripples... [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
7. Trick of the Tail [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
8. Los Endos [DVD] 5.1 Dolby Surround and DTS
9. Robbery, Assault and Battery-video
10. Ripples... -video
11. Trick of the Tail-video
12. Reissue Interviews 2007
13. I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe] [DVD] Live 1976 Concert Film
14. Fly on a Windshield [DVD Live 1976 Concert Film
15. Carpet Crawlers [DVD][Live 1976 Concert Film
16. Cinema Show [DVD Live 1976 Concert Film
17. Entangled [DVD Live 1976 Concert Film
18. Supper's Ready [DVD Live 1976 Concert Film
19. Los Endos [DVD Live 1976 Concert Film
20. "White Rocks" Premiere Programme 1977