Album Review by EDF
Phil Collins has had a very successful but unlikely career. When he moved from behind his drum kit to take over lead vocal duties from the departed Peter Gabriel, Genesis moved away from prog rock to commercial success and led to Collins being the most dominant songwriting force during the 1980’s. Come on, admit it, the man was everywhere. If he wasn’t recording solo albums he was recoding Genesis albums. He would write and produce for other artists (The Four Tops), duets (Philip Bailey), guest star on TV shows (MIAMI VICE) and movies (BUSTER). Now three of his albums have been packaged together but do they still stand up today?
Phil Collin’s first solo album was released in 1981 and the results are of a man not content with his lot. FACE VALUE, with that stark close up black and white headshot of Collins, would be copied for his next few album covers. The opening track, IN THE AIR TONIGHT, was also the biggest hit and sets the tone for the rest of the album. The stark sounding THE ROOF IS LEAKING is emotionally the lowest point but the chorus brings hope, “I’m getting stronger by the minute”. We also find the Earth Wind And Fire horn section on a number of tracks.
Ignoring the best of the Collins albums, HELLO, I MUST BE GOING, the next album in this collection was 1985’s NO JACKET REQUIRED. This enjoyable album had memorable tracks such as SUSSIDO and ONE MORE NIGHT. The production is slick and sounds slightly dated. Social commentary, love songs and fun tunes were the order of the day. Then between this album and 1989’s BUT SERIOUSLY something happened that would turn the music world on its head. House music separated teenagers from the adults and Collins music was viewed more cynically then ever before. ANOTHER DAY IN PARADISE was a social commentary song and the rest of the album was just as downbeat. The game was up for Collins and his audience started to dwindle. As far as this collection goes, if this collection left out BUT SERIOUSLY and included HELLO, I MUST BE GOING, then this would be recommended. Instead…