25 March 2004, gsparaco @ 12:32 am
Albert Back In N.Y.C. (Siréne-034)
Madison Square Garden, New York, NY – June 29th, 1980
Disc 1: Deep In The Motherlode, Dancing With The Moonlit Knight/Squonk, One For The Vine, The story of Albert, Behind The Lines/Duchess/Guide Vocal/Turn It On Again/Duke’s Travels/Duke’s End
Documents from Genesis’ Duke tour are fascinating to hear and are important for collectors. Despite the success of their past albums and their stature as first a cult progressive band and then their transition into a pop band, this was their first album to reach number one and “Misunderstanding” was their best selling single to date. There have been a scarcity of manufactured bootlegs from this era and all have focused upon the radio broadcasts (Hallam Tapes on Highland HL509/510), television broadcasts (Musica on Stonehenge (STCD 2110/11), Duke’s Source Live on Highland (HL511/512), and soundboards (Duke’s Misunderstanding on Sirene-041). Albert Back In N.Y.C. is a wonderful sounding document of one of the final shows from Genesis’ Duke tour. It is a three dimensional stereo recording with some of the most enjoyable dynamic and atmosphere to come out of Madison Square Garden.
This tape was used for a fan club release called In-A-Gadda-Da-V’Albert on Coaster Factory and Sirene have used this release as a basis. It sounds a bit heavier than previous issues and much better as a result. This show is very exciting with a very vocal and enthusiastic audience. This was the penultimate show of the long tour with the final show was the following night in upstate New York at Saratoga Springs. Phil Collins really stands out as a front man in these concerts leading the audience through a lot of comments and fun. His “Albert” story is very long, calling Albert a “loser” who didn’t speak “S & M… Spanish and Mexican” and who put out lots of albums like “Selling England By The Albert, and The Lamb Lies Down On Albert“. He similarly coaches the audience to cheer the hero and boo the villain during “The Lady Lies” and it’s possible to follow the story much better with everybody’s response. Phil introduces the road crew before “Ripples,” who work the smoke machine with Banks playing the theme to “The Tonight Show”.
The set list is standard for this part of the tour. Most of the Duke material is performed as a suite which represents the longest sustained conceptual piece Genesis did since The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway and the last they did. The notable addition to the set is “Back In N.Y.C.” segueing into “I Know What I Like” in the encores. This is the only time this track was performed with Phil on vocals so it is an event. Sirene include the US edit of “Turn It On Again” as a bonus track. It differs from the LP version by about two seconds but there is no noticeable difference. This is a great release by the label overall and one of the best Genesis shows on tape. The inserts are printed on the same kind of paper they used for their predecessor label Ayanami, something they do with all of their CDR releases. There are some photos from the tour and illustrations lifted from the official release. Although silver discs are the preferred format Back In N.Y.C. is definitely an essential release by the label.
Addendum: I feel the need to inform you of a small mistake noticed while reading your review/editorial of the GENESIS title “ALBERT BACK IN N.Y.C”. from the 1980 “DUKE” tour… you state that the New York concert included the “notable addition” of “BACK IN N.Y.C.”, going on to state “This is the only time this track was performed with Phil on vocals…”, not so. GENESIS opened up their FRIARS AYLESBURY concert, some two and one half months earlier, in mid April 1980, with “BACK IN N.Y.C.” and this track, the opening number, was a complete version, the New York encore having the second verse omitted. These are the only two versions of Phil fronting this excellent track!