Executive Action (Virtuoso 024/025)
Moody Coliseum, Dallas, TX – March 19th, 1977
Disc 1: Squonk, One For The Vine, Robbery Assault And Battery, Your Own Special Way, Firth Of Fifth, Carpet Crawlers, … In That Quiet Earth, Afterglow
Disc 2: I Know What I Like, Eleventh Earl Of Mar, Supper’s Ready, Dance On A Volcano, Drum Duet, Los Endos, The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, The Musical Box (closing section)
Executive Action contains one of the better soundboard recording from Genesis’ Wind & Wurthering era. The music is so well balanced and detailed that every note emanating from the stage can be heard and it is apparent that some kind of professional work was done on it. The only slight criticism that can be leveled against this tape is that the audience sound very far away from the action. This is the first silver pressed title featuring this show which has appeared on two fan-produced remaster projects. Live At University Park (GASP 015) is very good although collectors point out that its remaster, Live At Dallas Moody Coliseum (FL06b), is an improvement. Virtuoso base their version on the latter with impeccable remastering and have produced a wonderful sounding release.
Dallas is the source for the Seconds Out promo videos “Firth Of Fifth,” “Dance On A Volcano,” “drum duet,” “Los Endos,” “The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway,” and “The Musical Box (closing section).” This is their first tour with permanent session drummer Chester Thompson and their last with guitarist Steve Hackett. It also is the first tour where they begin the set with a song from their previous album followed by something new to establish the mood. “Squonk,” one of their heaviest songs, begins the show and afterwards Collins greets the audience by saying, “Good evening Dallas. Good evening Fort Worth. Good evening Montreal. It was a long shot. Well this is the first time we’ve played in Dallas-Forth Worth I think. It’s nice to be here….And I’d just like to say we’re recording tonight so you’re on tape. But don’t go mad.”
Harry robs a McDonald’s in “Robbery, Assault & Battery” which Collins calls “silliness” in which he hams up the lyrics. Rutherford gives the standard introduction for their latest single “Your Own Special Way” which is “racing up the Venezuelan charts.” This song would be dropped after the US dates, never to return, in favor of their new EP “Inside And Out.” Steve “lock up your daughters” Hackett is the seventh cousin of John Wayne in his introduction to the “thousand year old” song “Firth Of Fifth.” The performances of this classic reached a height about this time with a tense solo in the middle. “Carpet Crawlers” is a “happy go lucky country and western song written in the van here.” The surreal keyboard melody of the song is hypnotic as Collins works through the narrative. After the song he introduces Chester Thompson, who before the show “hit me over the head with a bat and demanded: your money or your life. I had to think about that. Since I had no money I invited him to play drums with us tonight.”
“…In That Quiet Earth” has a melody reminiscent of a fever dream and leads into “Afterglow.” Hackett’s contribution to the song is very obvious in this recording as the song builds into a magnificent crescendo. “I Know What I Like” is eight minutes long and contains the “Stagnation” reference and a tambourine solo with additional strange noises thrown in by Hackett. Rutherford then introduces “Eleventh Earl Of Mar.” Banks flubs the melody at the very beginning but the rest of the song continues without incident. The finale of the show from “Dance On A Volcano” through the encores exist on video tape and are very familiar. Overall this is a great release on the Virtuoso label who have been issuing great Genesis titles of late. It isn’t apparent why they titled it Executive Action, but this is recommended for being one of the best Wind & Wurthering documents in circulation.