And Then There Were Three - Thoughts?

  • I think the tracks are likeable enough; they're just not spectacular.

    That's a good summary of the thread ;)


    It's actually the problem of the album. It feels a bit lost but several tracks are really good. Over the years I learned to like "Undertow" and dislike "Scenes From A Night's Dream".


    And yes, "Snowbound" has always been a favorite of mine.


    I am sure it was an important album for the band - they needed to prove it works without Steve and they have moved forward in terms of songwriting and sound. They lost a bit of their strength, which was always a great atmosphere thoughout the albums. They eventually got that back later.

  • I am sure it was an important album for the band - they needed to prove it works without Steve and they have moved forward in terms of songwriting and sound. They lost a bit of their strength, which was always a great atmosphere thoughout the albums. They eventually got that back later.

    Absolutely. This album is caught between two great eras and it makes me wish Steve had stayed for just one more album. He seemed to blossom as a lyricist after his Acolyte album with Entangled and Rooftops revealing a nice line in cynicism and I think he could have made an even greater contribution to this record.

  • Hi all, I'm back on this forum after a long break, had to re register after being locked out during the last forum changes...been a fan since 1978 when I bought ATTWT...


    I still hold this album in high regard, this was the Genesis that I first discovered and although my faves are Trick and Wind I love this album so much. Burning Rope, Undertow, Deep In The Motherlode, The Lady Lies are all such great songs, its a classic evergreen album.

  • ATTWT is sometimes a strange thing to play. The opener alone is not really matching the quality of most of the other openers.

    It has its moments, like Undertow, Snowbound and The lady lies. And of course there is Burning Rope.

    Unlike many other Genesis albums, it sounds more like a collection of song ideas, not like a unit. Does it lack Steve's guitar playing? sure it does. But imagine what this one would have been like WITH Steve. Hard to imagine.

    Perhaps it's time to hear Deep in the motherlode again. Loud. VERY loud. In 5.1...

    ... make tomorrow today!

  • The opener alone is not really matching the quality of most of the other openers.

    It has its moments, like Undertow, Snowbound and The lady lies. And of course there is Burning Rope.

    Whereas I don't care for Snowbound, Lady or Rope, but love D&O and think it's one of their best openers!

    Abandon all reason

  • I absolutely love And Then There Were Three. It's a very moody album, dark at times with just enough light-hearted moments peppered throughout. There's really no other album in their whole catalogue that sounds quite like this one IMO.


    I agree that Down And Out is one of the strongest album openers they did, as mentioned above. And I know that it has some very strong competition, but man, that's a super energetic track that really announces the album beautifully to my ears. Banks and Rutherford all just ALL OVER this album, and of their solo-written pieces, Burning Rope, The Lady Lies and Deep In The Motherlode are incredibly strong tracks. I still listen to them often. Those are all pure Genesis IMO. One example I always think of is the middle section of Motherlode (where Phil is singing "All along the wagons, all along the dusty trail...") while the three of them play semi-restrained underneath before launching back into the main theme, and Mike slides into the chorus again. Brilliant! Makes me want to put it on right now.


    The only change I would have liked to see would be to swap out Ballad Of Big, which has never really done it for me, and replace it with The Day The Light Went Out (which I love). Oh, and perhaps move Follow You Follow Me to somewhere else in the album so that it ended with The Lady Lies.


    But yeah... big fan of this album, and I always will be! 8)

  • Personally, I never understood the fascination of some fans with the Lady Lies. I know, I am supposed to like it; it's Banks', it nods at prog with lyrics and all but I just find verses and chorus incredibly dull. It happens rarely with me and Tony's songs but this is really one of the few cases. As for the album, I listen to it quite often but I do skip several songs and I realized it's more nostalgia with the period that the music itself. Not a very coherent, focused work imo. Steve gone, Phil's mind and purpose elsewhere, the music landscape around the changing, all elements that seemed to have led them to seek a different approach but half-heartedly. Even the good songs, seem to lack conviction.

  • Definitely a transitional album, and sort of an awkward leap between eras. Tony and Mike dominate (as they also would on CAS) since Phil is not quite ready yet to be a full contributor to the writing.


    "Follow You Follow Me" was the first song Genesis song I ever heard, but in retrospect I think the full ATTWT album would not have been a good introduction to the band for me.


    I think it says something about the album that only one of its songs (FYFM) ever made it into the band's long-term concert repertoire.


    Definite high points for me are "Say It's Alright Joe" (a seemingly very underappreciated song), "Deep in the Motherlode," "Many Too Many" and "Undertow."


    Thoughts on other songs:


    "Ballad of Big" - Brought down by some rather poor lyrics (which have grammar problems on top of everything else, such as pointlessly switching between past and present tense).


    "Snowbound" - Lovely tune but the lyrics are odd in an unappealing way. There was probably no good way to write a song about the apparent subject matter at hand.


    "Burning Rope" - Not a bad song but too many lines of the lyrics make no particular sense.


    "Scenes from a Night's Dream" - I like this song OK, but in order to appreciate it one really has to be familiar with the source material ("Little Nemo in Slumberland," a groundbreaking early 20th-century Sunday comic).


    "The Lady Lies" - Starts out a little awkwardly ("come to lurehimtothedemon'slair") but it gets better. To me this seems to work better as a metaphor for something than as an actual story.

    The Seat Bunny!

  • Some interesting thoughts there, not a whole lot I agree with but I Iike reading others' views on album that's hugely problematic for me.


    While I appreciate Scenes is based on a comic, I doubt that closer acquaintance with the comic would alter my loathing of the song.

    I think it says something about the album that only one of its songs (FYFM) ever made it into the band's long-term concert repertoire.

    Hmmm, really? I reckon it says more about their ruthlessness with their own material, including some of their best songs. e. g. would you say the same about the albums Los Endos, Afterglow and Turn It On Again come from?

    Abandon all reason

  • This was the first Genesis album I bought, probably in 1979 aged twelve or thirteen. Genesis had first appeared on my radar via a school friend, who was obsessed with The Knife. That song was a bit too heavy (as in complex and serious) for me at first, but I liked the more accessible sound of And Then There Were Three.


    I agree with the comments about it being a transitional album - the shorter songs, the obvious push for radio play. Despite its flaws (and let's face it, Mike isn't in Steve's league as a guitarist), I am exceptionally fond of it. For me, it's the last great Genesis album, the last one to feature the classic sound they found on Selling England. As somebody else has written, Mike's and Tony's fingerprints are all over this album - what more need be said to recommend it?


    If I had to identify a particular highlight, I guess it would be the chorus of Undertow. Like Afterglow, it soars defiantly. One line, in particular, still moves me to tears whenever I hear it: "Spring must strike again against the shield of winter"

  • While I appreciate Scenes is based on a comic, I doubt that closer acquaintance with the comic would alter my loathing of the song.

    OK, then -- one needs to be familiar with the source material to make any sense of the song at all!

    I reckon it says more about their ruthlessness with their own material, including some of their best songs. e. g. would you say the same about the albums Los Endos, Afterglow and Turn It On Again come from?

    Well, you may have a point there, particularly where W&W is concerned. Still (and I may be wrong), I've gotten the impression that most of the ATTWT songs that were played live -- specifically "Down and Out," "Ballad of Big," "Burning Rope," "Deep in the Motherlode" & "Say It's Alright Joe" -- had unusually short stints in the band's set list.

    The Seat Bunny!

  • I've gotten the impression that most of the ATTWT songs that were played live -- specifically "Down and Out," "Ballad of Big," "Burning Rope," "Deep in the Motherlode" & "Say It's Alright Joe" -- had unusually short stints in the band's set list.

    Oh you're not wrong there. The 1st three lasted one tour, the other two stayed for the Duke tour, as did Lady. In fact D&O didn't even last the one tour, it got dropped during the tour! Ballad might've too?


    Again though, was that unusual practice for them? They usually had a bunch of "one & done" tracks from each album.

    Abandon all reason

  • Hi everyone, new here and what better place to start than in the beginning for me. First Genesis album I bought because of the single FYFM. Bought from Littlewoods Romford (oh the glamour), and still still have the LP. I still love this album, and like many albums you play over and over the tracks flow one after another very well. In fact I now love MTM far more than I did at the time. Someone at school lent me Seconds Out and the 41 year love affair with Genesis began.

  • They just suffered a defection with Steve and had faced a potential one with Phil, going through personal issues and unsure about his role in the band and the music they were making, to the point he even considered joining the Who

    Keith Moon died in September 1978, by which point Genesis had recorded And Then There Were Three and were actively touring the album. I believe Phil offered to join The Who after Moony died, not before.

  • Keith Moon died in September 1978, by which point Genesis had recorded And Then There Were Three and were actively touring the album. I believe Phil offered to join The Who after Moony died, not before.

    May be but I still remember a couple of interviews in which Phil expressed his dissatisfaction with either the band altogether, or his role within it. Apparently he also resented the other two for the incessant touring which brought his marriage to an end. I have no knowledge of the exact timeline of course but it's safe to say, his mind was elsewhere.

  • May be but I still remember a couple of interviews in which Phil expressed his dissatisfaction with either the band altogether, or his role within it. Apparently he also resented the other two for the incessant touring which brought his marriage to an end. I have no knowledge of the exact timeline of course but it's safe to say, his mind was elsewhere.

    Not "maybe"; Keith Moon died in September. You claimed that when they were making the album earlier that year, Phil was itching to join The Who. And he wasn't.


    As for the claim of resentment from Phil towards Mike and Tony, that's the first I've heard. It's the manager who plans the touring schedule, not the band, so I don't know where you're getting your information from.

  • Not "maybe"; Keith Moon died in September. You claimed that when they were making the album earlier that year, Phil was itching to join The Who. And he wasn't.


    As for the claim of resentment from Phil towards Mike and Tony, that's the first I've heard. It's the manager who plans the touring schedule, not the band, so I don't know where you're getting your information from.

    From the horse's mouth, he said it in an interview that, perhaps unreasonably he resented the touring and the fact the other two were pushing for that while he was having problems with his marriage. I think he was being unreasonable and at the end of the interview, he sort of acknowledged that.

    The interview , as I remember, is not even very old, last decade, I saw it on Youtube.

    As for the timeline and Keith's death, as I said, I don't dispute it.

    it is generally known, he was having personal problems, he wasn't very happy with the the band and his role in it, during that period.

    He just wanted to be a drummer and he talked about having been offered the gig with the Who.

    When exactly that happens, I dont know but it's a known fact.

    Obviously, it makes perfect sense that would have happened after Moon's death.

    Earlier that year however, he had left for Vancouver, his tenure with the band was on very shaky ground, to the point that he said in other interviews that he had basically left the band or he was ready to do so, unless the others could find a way to make it work with him in Canada.

    So yes, they were facing a second potential defection and yes, he was distracted and yes he was unhappy, personally and artistically. That was my whole point.

    Edited 3 times, last by Fabrizio ().