MIKE RUTHERFORD - Acting Very Strange - review

  • Mike Rutherford's second album "Acting Very Strange" is a rather unique one - and even harder to find on CD than Smallcreep's Day.


    We have now put a review online here:

    https://www.genesis-news.com/c…ge-album-review-s408.html


    What do you think about the album?


  • Frankly it's an awful album. Reminds me of Mike Oldfield Earth Moving when he decided (unwisely) to sing lead vocals and the result was a mess. Other than Mike deciding to sing lead on AVS the songs are poor. Ant P cannot sing but he created strong melodies to compensate. AVS was always going to be tough to beat SD and perhaps the complete change in style from SD to pop rock centric AVS was never going to be accepted, much like Abacab after Duke.

  • I have put on that record for the first time in years. I still think Hideaway is a nice ballad, and some tracks are quite unqique - and also a bit cool. Sometimes it sounds a bit like The Police, then, as you said, awful. But it's a different album and part of Mike's carreer.

  • I have put on that record for the first time in years. I still think Hideaway is a nice ballad, and some tracks are quite unqique - and also a bit cool. Sometimes it sounds a bit like The Police, then, as you said, awful. But it's a different album and part of Mike's carreer.

    That strained singing voice of his works on Hideaway - he comes across actually quite convincingly.

    Unfortunately, it's the only track on the album I like.


    Other than my feelings for Hideaway, I agree with Ned. I just don't think the other songs are any good and combined with his poor vocals - it's like handing a drowning man an anchor.

  • As I said on another thread: "Not only are the songs mostly nothing special to begin with, but poor Mike doesn't manage even one passable lead vocal here. (I'd say he comes closest on 'A Day To Remember.')"


    Additional thoughts:

    (1) I think "Who's Fooling Who" is the best song overall. (BTW, the lyrics as published online don't ever seem to be correct. It's "they trot out some pocketbook psychology." It's not "tried out.")

    (2) The outtake "Calypso" has an even worse vocal than any of the songs on the album.

    (3) "Making a Big Mistake" does not sound like it was recorded during the AVS sessions. Mike's vocal on this track (while still not perfect) is much better than anything he did on AVS.

    Such are the times we live in, that talking about what's really going on will make you sound crazy.

  • Bought the single..... Loved it.


    Rushed to buy the album when it came out...Played once...Binned...


    I suppose I was hoping for another Smallcreeps Day though as it is one of my all time favourite albums.


    Best wishes


    John

  • There's something to Who Is Fooling Who, but apart from that I particularly like the first two and the last two tracks. AVS with strong, flowing verses. A Day To Remember has this bewitching "And in a moment's hesitation ..." section, typical Mike. I Don't Wanna Know is real prog, astonishing rhythm changes. Hideaway has always made me think, I've heard that before, nostalgic in a way.

  • Halfway There....

    Ah, OK. Actually a pretty good song in itself, but toward the end Mike's singing gets really strained and IMO he ends up hitting his worst point vocally on the album.

    Such are the times we live in, that talking about what's really going on will make you sound crazy.

  • One of those albums where you think, ‘nice try, vocals not a disaster. Some good rhythms, good atmosphere’ but then never play it again, except maybe Hideaway. Never topped Smallcreeps in my opinion. In fact the first solo album by each of them was the one I played most.

  • I think Mike & the Mechanics played "Maxine" from AVS on their debut tour. I saw them at the Tower Theater in Philly and I'm sure I remember their announcing that song - fortunately for all involved, Paul tackled the vocal instead of Mike. ^^

    Stepping out the back way, hoping nobody sees...

  • The vocals aside (and I think some of the backing vox work quite well actually) I think it's a pretty good album, not as good as Smallcreep, but that was never going to happen!!

    Ian


    There is a church bell

    That rings on the hour

    Filling the streets

    Stopping the world awhile

  • I can only speak for myself but for me this album has won an award for Worst Album Ever (Genesis-related). With flying colours, that is.


    The most interesting thing about it is it explains why Abacab followed Duke, as you say in your review. I only listened to this album a few times (online), I remember each time I could barely make it through the whole album. Even worse, I could barely make it through any song. Awful album, yes I couldn't agree more.

  • Ned, did you purchase The Fugitive - Tony Banks when it was remastered by Cherry Red? we did and its just as important a part of history as ACF. So I would say the same for SD / AVS.


    Couldn't Get Arrested...


    TGA

  • Ned, did you purchase The Fugitive - Tony Banks when it was remastered by Cherry Red? we did and its just as important a part of history as ACF. So I would say the same for SD / AVS.


    Couldn't Get Arrested...


    TGA


    Ned, did you purchase The Fugitive - Tony Banks when it was remastered by Cherry Red? we did and its just as important a part of history as ACF. So I would say the same for SD / AVS.


    Couldn't Get Arrested...


    TGA

    No, I bought first edition of The Fugitive originally on its release and tbh it's Tony's best solo by a country mile. Again, no idea what possessed Tony to sing and the only saving grace is that he does a better job than Mike plus the songs are more amenable and melodic than AVS imho.