Friday, October 18, 2019

Genesis 17: The Way We Walk

Maybe they knew this would be the last big tour for a while, as Genesis took the opportunity to glut the marketplace with not one, but two live albums culled from their big tour supporting We Can’t Dance. Playing on the video and chorus for “I Can’t Dance”, both volumes were titled The Way We Walk, and were sequenced thematically.
Volume One: The Shorts was released first, in time for the holiday buying season, and concentrated on the hit singles, some recorded on the Invisible Touch tour. Outside of Phil Collins’ evangelist impression on “Jesus He Knows Me”, F-bomb in “Invisible Touch”, and gargling through “I Can’t Dance”, there’s no real difference from the studio versions, except that stalwart supporting players Daryl Stuermer and Chester Thompson are on hand to fill out the sound. (Nice of the boys to include them on the cover, though.) It helped that none of the songs had been repeated from earlier live albums, but that also meant that your enjoyment depended on whether you liked the ‘80s version of Genesis.

If you didn’t, maybe you were more excited by Volume Two: The Longs, which arrived a few months later with no intention of going gold. This set was devoted to their lengthy epics, mostly focusing on instrumental interplay. “Old Medley” begins with “Dance On A Volcano” before weaving tunes from the Peter Gabriel era over 15 minutes, then teasing the crowd with random lines from the likes of “That’s All”, “Your Own Special Way”, “Follow You, Follow Me” and, sadly, “Illegal Alien”. (Earlier tours had similar medleys, wherein Phil would even sprinkle a Mike + The Mechanics tune and “You Can’t Hurry Love”.)
Four tracks exceed ten minutes; “Drum Duet”, thankfully, is “only” six. Even in this context the newer pieces stick out, though the “Home By The Sea” suite does well, as does “Domino”, begrudgingly. The two epics from We Can’t Dance don’t gain any stature but don’t lose any either.

Genesis The Way We Walk Volume One: The Shorts (1992)—3
The Way We Walk Volume Two: The Longs (1993)—3

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