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    Imst, Austria (July 08, 1995)

    On Saturday, July 8, 1995, a fantastic concert took place for an audience of 4,000 in impressive surroundings on the Stadtplatz in Imst, Tyrolia.

    It was (to my knowledge) the first performance of a member of Genesis in west Austria. It was also a double concert, because a second band played after the Mechanics, a band that needs no introduction and is highly respected amongst musicians in particular: Toto.
    The Mechanics played an exciting gig. Gary Wallis provided the rhythmic backbone, Tim Renwick and Mike Rutherford provided excellent lively guitar work, Paul Young really got the audience going, and Paul Young is a class of his own.
    The set consisted of A Beggar On A Beach Of Gold, Another Cup Of Coffee, Get Up, Silent Running, Plain & Simple, Over My Shoulder, Web Of Lies, The Living Years, Word Of Mouth and All I Need Is A Miracle. The most noteworthy songs were the ever changing and very intense Plain & Simple and the semi-acoustic version of Silent Running. The reactions in the audience were remarkable: Though Mike + The Mechanics have not become a household name (yet), most of their songs were recognized and met with big applause. The only downer in Imst – as in Offenbach and even more so in St. Gallen, Switzerland – was the extremely short set of less than 90 minutes. It is not easy to understand that; after all, the band have a rich catalogue of songs that would work great live (in particular on the first two albums), and a set is shortened always at the expense of longer, more sophisticated songs – the hits will always be played anyway.

    Toto then showed that they are not only excellent studio musicians but bring lots to the stage in the longer instrumentals. We were treated to a special surprise at the end of Toto’s gig: When singer/guitarist Steve Lukather, who in his youth ardently loved Genesis and their albums Foxtrot and Selling England By The Pound, announced Hold The Line as the final encore he was joined by Mike Rutherford and Paul Young. Lukather offered Rutherford the microphone several times for the chorus, but Mike always politely refused. Paul Young was happy to help out and did a great job.

    It was a remarkable night that proved again that the stars of the Mechanics and of Toto are some of the few who still truly deserve to be called “musicians”. It was also clear that they all got along very well and had a great evening. A bit more of the Mechanics would have been perfect – but apparently musical viands are only served as they are in choice restaurants – in small amounts.

    by Josef Lercher
    English by Martin Klinkhardt

    Mike Rutherford

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