I was first introduced to the majesty of Genesis by my older brother. I was in grade 6 and he gave me a copy of And then there were three. It was their first album after Steve Hackett left. At the time his departure meant nothing to me other than leaving them with a clever album title. ATTWT had a few great songs, but I was in store for much more.
Later that school year I was beginning to get into Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and Ozzy's solo stuff was still pretty new. I went over to a friends house for lunch and leafed through his Dads killer record collection. He had another Genesis album. One that I hadn't seen at the record stores. I asked him if I could borrow it. Without hesitation he said sure. I never brought it back. This heavy double album with the weird pictures on it was something else. It sounded like ATTWT in that the time changes didn't make sense to me. It went from piano to keyboards to electric guitar and back in ways I'd never heard. It was catchy and intense. I was drawn to it. It spoke to me.
The singer I knew from another album I already owned which featured a track called Solsbury Hill. This album also had Steve Hackett on guitar. It was blowing my mind. I hadn't even heard of the genre - prog rock.
I didn't know it at the time but this was a serious album that would later be revered as Peter Gabriel's finest work. Also his last album with the band. Phil Collins had not yet fully developed as a singer and only contributed minutley to the albums vocals. (his drumming was among the best, he was a master of weird time signatures along with Tony Banks )
Over the next 2 years a new type of music emerged called thrash metal. It was the more intense, more visceral form of heavy metal. I became enamored with it. There really wasn't anything that could hold my attention like this new metal. Nothing except for old Genesis. It was intense enough to go head to head with metal but it did it without crunching guitars, fast double kick drums or too much screaming. Most Genesis albums, if covered by a competent metal band, would be epic.
I slowly and quietly collected all of their albums up to their self titled MAMA album and sort of held them in my heart as my all time favourites. None of my friends shared this love and back then (the 80's) you chosen music was often your identity.
The lamb lies down on Broadway is a concept album. Its a story carried on from song to song. If I have it correctly , in a nutshell, its a tale of a Puerto Rican teen named Real who immigrates to the US and lands in NYC. He suffers from schizophrenia and possibly imagines he has a brother.
The lyrics are pretty weird and there are some references that elude to the possibilty that Rael is a psyudonym or a play on the name Gabriel. I haven't really delved that deep into it. In my late 20's I named my second Siberian Husky Rael.
Mikey the cat, and Rael. I suppose Mikey could have been named after Mike Rutherford.
There are no bad songs on ' The lamb'. Only intense and catchy tunes that are so hummable that you can't even fall asleep. My favourite songs are as follows : Back in NYC, Fly on a windshield, In the cage, Carpet Crawlers, Lily-white Lilith, Anyway and Riding the Scree.
A must for anyone who like rock, possibly metal or can appreciate songs that could just as easily have been performed my an orchestra. A super big thanks to my pal Jonathan Badov at Sonic Artistry in Toronto for buying me this limited pressing. The sound is otherworldly.