Recent Genesis-related news
15/06/2019 STEVE HACKETT: 2020 tour dates for Australia and New Zealand announced
08/06/2019 PHIL COLLINS: Surprise performance by Mike Rutherford in Berlin
06/06/2019 DJABE & STEVE HACKETT: Limited Gold Edition vinyl announced
05/06/2019 STEVE HACKETT: Three Progressive Music Awards nominations
28/05/2019 STEVE HACKETT Two Acoustic Shows at Trading Boundaries

Best Opening Song

  • The opening salvo of Hang In Long Enough on 1989's ...But Seriously is, for me, the greatest opening number on a Phil Collins album. That blast of horns (the Phenix Horns employing the triple tonguing technique to achieve that distinctive sound) makes for an arresting start and from that point on the mood never lets up. Phil's song of blind ambition is suitably driving and features the twin attack of Daryl Stuermer and Dominic Miller on electric guitar (a first for a PC tune) and a thumping bass line from Nathan East. And the drums are bloomin' loud!


    The style of Hang In Long Enough is distinctly r'n'b and it wouldn't have sounded out of place on No Jacket Required. The sound here is more organic, though. Gone are the synth drums and domineering drum machine and the song benefits from their absence.


    Do any PC fans here have a preference when it comes to opening songs? Certainly the moody ambience of In The Air The Tonight and I Don't Care Anymore takes some beating. How about Both Sides Of The Story, praised by Q Magazine for sounding like Springsteen's E-Street Band? Or maybe the unbridled optimism of Dance Into The Light is more your thing?

  • I can`t decide,whether I should choose In The Air Tonight or Both Sides Of The Story as favourite. While I do not love the album at all, I always appreciated the opening track of Both Sides, because of its tremendous leitmotif played over a powerful drum riff. Really great stuff. In the Air Tonight starts smoothly and slowly and ends up really big. A real cracker.

    First we learned to walk on water.

    Then we tried something harder.

    - Red Seven -

  • Even though they may be considered "obvious" choices, I can't help but pick "In The Air Tonight" and "I Don't Care Anymore". They are just so strong as openers - I want to hear the rest of the album just from hearing the opening song. Isn't that feeling what an opening song hopes to achieve?

  • In order:


    1. In The Air Tonight

    2. I Don't Care Anymore

    3. Hang In Long Enough

    4. Dance Into The Light

    5. Sussudio

    6. Wake Up Call

    7. Girl (Why You Wanna Make Me Blue)


    1 and 2 are very close together, and 4 and 5 are pretty much tied.

  • Just realised I missed off Serious Hits Live, so Something Happened On The Way To Heaven would probably be around the 4/5 position. I think, taking only the tracks from the album, Don't Lose My Number would have been a better opener.

  • Just realised I missed off Serious Hits Live, so Something Happened On The Way To Heaven would probably be around the 4/5 position. I think, taking only the tracks from the album, Don't Lose My Number would have been a better opener.

    Luckily enough, the performance of Hang In Long Enough and Hand In Hand from Phil's amazing show in Berlin 1990 were included on a CD release of the single Everyday so, for me, I have Serious Hits Live starting with those two songs. As an aside, why oh why did Phil only ever release one live album during his solo career?

  • Luckily enough, the performance of Hang In Long Enough and Hand In Hand from Phil's amazing show in Berlin 1990 were included on a CD release of the single Everyday so, for me, I have Serious Hits Live starting with those two songs. As an aside, why oh why did Phil only ever release one live album during his solo career?

    That is bizarre - I would love a full-length version of the Perkins Palace show (CD and DVD/BluRay) or any show with his "Hot Tub Club".

  • That is bizarre - I would love a full-length version of the Perkins Palace show (CD and DVD/BluRay) or any show with his "Hot Tub Club".

    I was hoping that, as part of the Take A Look At Me Now campaign, the lack of live material would be addressed. It's bewildering that neither Perkins Palace or No Ticket Required had a DVD release, let alone a release on Blu-ray. While the Both Sides tour wasn't even commemorated on VHS!

  • Phil's best album opener, in my mind, is I Don't Care Anymore. It sets the mood for the whole album; in fact I often wonder whether Hello I Must Be Going isn't a kind of concept album ("To Shacking Up From Separation", if you permit the groaner). I Don't Care Anymore has the big wall of of sound, it has the small instrumentation, it has the raw emotions, all of which reappear at various points of the album.


    The same can, perhaps, be said about In The Air Tonight. I don't know. Due to its immense success ITAT dwarves all the other songs on Face Value; it unbalances the whole album. I can't, of course, but I would like to know what I'd have thought about In The Air Tonight as the album opener if it had not been that gigantic hit.

  • Phil's best album opener, in my mind, is I Don't Care Anymore. It sets the mood for the whole album; in fact I often wonder whether Hello I Must Be Going isn't a kind of concept album ("To Shacking Up From Separation", if you permit the groaner). I Don't Care Anymore has the big wall of of sound, it has the small instrumentation, it has the raw emotions, all of which reappear at various points of the album.


    The same can, perhaps, be said about In The Air Tonight. I don't know. Due to its immense success ITAT dwarves all the other songs on Face Value; it unbalances the whole album. I can't, of course, but I would like to know what I'd have thought about In The Air Tonight as the album opener if it had not been that gigantic hit.

    Well, you see I don't think ITAT dwarves the other FV songs, magnificent though it is. The whole album is full of songs which almost match its quality (The Roof Is Leaking & You Know What I Mean in particular). ITAT sets the tone, just as IDCA does as you mention.

  • I'm planning a PC compilation disc. Not finalised but I know the opener isn't one of the album openers. I'm going for a 'gradual' sort of opener.

    Right I finally got around to my compilation. Sticking with an 80-minute disc proved challenging and I had to lose 3 or 4 I really wanted to include, plus a lot of the ones I like aren't short. I wanted to have one or two Brand X and had to make do with just the one.


    Droned

    Hand In Hand

    Thru These Walls

    Wake Up Call

    Inside Out

    Just Another Story

    I Don't Care Anymore

    We Said Hello Goodbye

    Tomorrow Never Knows

    We Wait & We Wonder

    Testify

    I Wish It Would Rain Down

    Survivors

    In The Air Tonight

    Don't Make Waves

  • That's quite a varied list. If someone played that disc to a non-PC fan, someone who perhaps thought all there is to his music is Sussudio and Groovy Kind Of Love, they'd be quite surprised.

  • That's quite a varied list. If someone played that disc to a non-PC fan, someone who perhaps thought all there is to his music is Sussudio and Groovy Kind Of Love, they'd be quite surprised.

    Thanks, that's actually kind of what I was aiming for, a collection that might surprise a casual listener or non-fan. The list is obviously a reflection of my preferences in terms of his work e.g. you'll notice it's light on the poppier brassy stuff and leans more to the darker, more atmospheric material.


    What do you reckon to the Face Value two-hander opening? I haven't given it a full listen-through yet but while Droned won't seem a natural opener to many, I think it sounds good at the start and pleasingly wrong-footing people's expectations (not that anyone else is likely to hear this!). I couldn't separate it out from HIH as they make a nice package.

  • What do you reckon to the Face Value two-hander opening? I haven't given it a full listen-through yet but while Droned won't seem a natural opener to many, I think it sounds good at the start and pleasingly wrong-footing people's expectations (not that anyone else is likely to hear this!). I couldn't separate it out from HIH as they make a nice package.

    I like it. The double whammy of Droned and Hand In Hand has long been a favourite of mine. Droned is hypnotic and trancey while Hand In Hand is exultant and uplifting. It's a pity that he abandoned this kind of music so quickly in his career

  • I would happily play that compilation to any 'casual' Phil fans and watch their jaws drop. The only problem is I would have to include The Roof Is Leaking.

  • I would happily play that compilation to any 'casual' Phil fans and watch their jaws drop. The only problem is I would have to include The Roof Is Leaking.

    One of several I wanted to include but had to reluctantly let go. It would have had to remain part of the sequence with Droned and HiH (I'd have then opted for a different opener). Right up to the last moment I had Colours on there but it took up too much room. I tried every permutation with it in but it always meant losing 2 or 3 others I really wanted in so I had to heave a sigh and drop it, reducing But Seriously down to just Rain Down. I briefly considered two discs but decided to keep it to one and avoid having too much space.

  • For me hands its a tossup between , In The Air Tonight, arguably his most famous song and I Dont Care Anymore. In the Air edges it for me as it has a darker sound and that drum sound can never be duplicated. Its one of the best pop songs every written for my taste.