Genesis - Trick Of The Tail
Now for a bit of prog rock. This album came out at a very significant transition point for Genesis. They had just lost Peter Gabriel as their lead singer and frontman. His theatrical style on stage and vocals were a key part of the band's style and reputation so far.
It was going to be a huge challenge to replace him. And it didn't go well, auditions came and went unsuccessfully, until someone thought about giving their drummer a try. Phil Collins was persuaded to sing and both his and Genesis’s future changed dramatically.
Trick Of The Tail was released in February 1976 with Collins on vocals. It was still very much a Genesis album, with intricate guitars, quirky lyrics, great songs, and all the usual hallmarks, but without Gabriel. Many of the songs played to the band's remaining strengths. Others were written specifically with Collins' singing style in mind.
Collins also brought some of his love for jazz and drumming into the closing track “Los Endos”, an instrumental co-written by all of the band. The beautiful and intricate “Ripples” along with Collins in chirpy Cockney burglar style on “Robbery, Assault and Battery” are personal favourites on the album.
Trick Of The Tail was awarded gold discs in both the UK and US and was successful in its own right. Genesis continued to evolve over the years. Collins also had an enormously successful solo career alongside the band. It could all have been so different had the album fallen flat.
It does get overlooked now and perhaps its significance is forgotten. Later and bigger hits, or perhaps earlier Gabriel led albums, take the spotlight more. Which is a shame for such a pivotal album in the band's history.