Earls Court 1977 (Siréne-070)
Earl’s Court, London, England – June 24th, 1977
Disc 1: Squonk, One For The Vine, Robbery Assault And Battery, Inside And Out, Firth Of Fifth, Carpet Crawlers, In That Quiet Earth, Afterglow, I Know What I Like
Disc 2: Eleventh Earl Of Mar, Supper’s Ready, Dance On A Volcano, Los Endos, The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, The Musical Box, The Knife.
Earls Court 1977 is the latest release of the most important and popular Genesis tape from the Wind & Wuthering era. Although nobody knew it at the time, this show would be the penultimate UK gig with guitarist Steve Hackett as a member of the band.
They did many different radio broadcasts of UK gigs on this tour including the second night at the Rainbow on Jan 2nd (A Living Story), the January 20th Southampton gig broadcast to Southampton area hospitals alone. This was broadcast on Nicky Horne’s “Your Mother Wouldn’t Like It” and he introduces the band before “Squonk”. The broadcast was first booted on vinyl as Living Revelations (KM 2077-LP).
The first compact disc release is the well known Before Riches on Silver Rarities (SIRA-124/125), Simply Follow on Highland (HL062/63#G9), and my personal favorite Robbery Assault & Battery on the A Collector’s Label (ACL-011/12). The issues that confronted with this tape include the muddiness in “Supper’s Ready” on Before Riches and the occasional static, betraying its origins from the radio.
The sources was a second generation tape of the FM broadcast with “Supper’s Ready” and “Dance On A Volcano” coming from a first generation. Other releases fixed those problems and Sirene have mastered the tape to make it sound much fatter than the ACL release.
Unfortunately they weren’t able to fix the problem of the fake applause edited over the song introductions. It seems only working with the original master tape will address that. Musically this is perhaps Genesis’ most well known Wind & Wuthering/Seconds Out show. Phil Collins welcomes everyone listening on the radio by saying, “welcome to Earl’s Co…welcome to Earl’s Co…” many times, imitating a broken record.
Genesis made the bold decision to drop their hit “Your Own Special Way” with “Inside & Out” from the Spot The Pigeon EP which was their latest release. The audience reacts loudly for the first encore “The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway” which segues into the closing of “The Musical Box”. “The Knife” is a special second encore which was rarely played in this period of the band’s history.
Compared to their Rainbow Theater appearance earlier in the year the band are noticeably tighter with Chester Thompson on the drums especially fitting in nicely. His drum duet with Phil in “Los Endos” is very exciting. Overall this release isn’t a significant improvement over previous releases but on the other hand it hasn’t been released for a while so this is an opportunity to pick up an excellent edition of this essential show.
The artwork used is very good with pictures of Phil in his “John The Baptist” phase with the long beard and the crazed look in his eye. It looks as if he’s trying to become the showman for the band and make people forget all about Gabriel. Sirene is limiting this, like all their releases, to three hundred copies.