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Thread: Is Genesis "Selling England by the Pound" the most perfect Prog album ever?

  1. #26
    Member since March 2004 mozo-pg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by feldman View Post
    So far. But I remain open to finding an album I've not heard yet that could top Selling England. Hence this thread...
    I would suggest, PFM's Per Un Amico (same era/different country). Definitely with Italian vocals. Not necessarily prog outright but I'd add Supertramp's Crime Of The Centre or ELO's Eldorado.

  2. #27
    ^^Or something from Gentle Giant if you're looking for perfection. Not too many wasted notes with them.

  3. #28
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    I don't even rate it as the best Genesis album (which is a toss-up between Trick of the Tail or Wind & Wuthering for me, depending on the day). I would put Close to the Edge above it, and probably a few others, if I really think about it.

    But none of that really matters. It's widely-regarded as a masterpiece and I enjoy it immensely.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  4. #29
    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bartellb View Post
    ^^Or something from Gentle Giant if you're looking for perfection. Not too many wasted notes with them.

  5. #30
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    No, but it's very good, one of the best.

    I would argue that a "perfect" prog album is impossible: If there are no weak spots, then the band/artist isn't pushing his own abilities enough. The greatness of this music lies partly in its imperfections; in guys whose formal compositional background mostly consists of writing pop songs, listening to the BBC (almost all-classical in the Sixties), and maybe some piano lessons, having them go out and try to musically punch far above their weight. That's where "Firth of Fifth" comes from. It's also where semi-stumbles like "The Battle of Epping Forest" come from. And I'd argue that the heights of "Firth" would be less likely without the risks of "Battle".

  6. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by DocProgger View Post
    It doesn't have to be "perfect" to be regarded as magnificent and certainly one of the cornerstone progressive rock albums of all time. I don't understand this need to talk in absolutes, both negatively and positively. It has some weak spots--More Fool Me, the way too wordy,busy and meandering Epping Forest. I think Trick of the Tail is a stronger overall album. Lets just enjoy the greatness without the burden of claimed "perfection".
    This ^^^^
    is absolutely correct!

  7. #32
    Member Vic2012's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Bails View Post
    I don't even rate it as the best Genesis album (which is a toss-up between Trick of the Tail or [I]Wind & Wuthering.
    I play those 2 albums more often than the Gabriel albums. I even rank Tresspass and Foxtrot higher than SEBTP.

  8. #33
    I would rate "Foxtrot" and "Close To The Edge" much higher.

  9. #34
    ghostsofpompeii ghostsofpompeii's Avatar
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    When I'm looking for a classic Genesis album this seems to be the first one I pull out.

  10. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve983 View Post
    Not my most fave album, I'd rate Trick and Wind higher but that's just me!
    Not just you, me and others here too. The best tracks on Selling (Moonlit Knight, Firth, Cinema Show) are magnificent but I tend to listen to the live versions, whether sung by Peter or Phil, even more.

  11. #36
    Member Gerhard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    2. Progressive Rock is not just a UK phenomenon. There were huge musicians in other parts of the planet, actually all over the planet, that were equally good.
    Or even other planets altogether (e.g., Saturn, Kobaia, etc.)

  12. #37
    I agree that Epping Forest is brilliant. And I have a theory about why so many progfans complain about it.

    My theory is: They heard the line about Harold Demure "nips up the highest tree" and "fireth acorns from out of hith thling", and, instantly recognizing themselves as the chicken sissy who perches and shoots from relative safety, are so flustered and flushed that they become incapable of reacting to the absolutely dazzling performances on display and succumb to the vapors.


  13. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by Gerhard View Post
    Or even other planets altogether (e.g., Saturn, Kobaia, etc.)

  14. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by feldman View Post
    So far. But I remain open to finding an album I've not heard yet that could top Selling England. Hence this thread...
    Pawn Hearts - Van Der Graaf Generator

    Future Days - Can

    The Rotters Club - Hatfield and the North

  15. #40
    It's a very good album. But it's not 'Close to the Edge', and it's the fault of 'More Fool Me', not 'Epping Forest'.

  16. #41
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DocProgger View Post
    Not just you, me and others here too. The best tracks on Selling (Moonlit Knight, Firth, Cinema Show) are magnificent but I tend to listen to the live versions, whether sung by Peter or Phil, even more.
    Yep. Same here. That Seconds Out album is killer.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  17. #42
    Image if The Lamb contained the first LP only. Talk about perfection.

  18. #43
    NEARfest Officer Emeritus Nearfest2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Man In The Mountain View Post
    I'm not too sure about Epping Forest though. Too wordy, and doesn't really have a good high point of anticipation.
    This is the song that holds back the album for me. "More Fool Me" is unnecessary as well, but it's fine. I certainly never go out of my way to listen to it.
    Chad

  19. #44
    I think Foxtrot was their best album as far as creative songwriting, a variety of mood, feeling and emotion and it visually takes me to more interesting places in my mind.

    SEBTP I would rank second, then Nursery Cryme.

    The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway needs to be taken within context of a theatrical show. If you watch the live concert, then the filler stuff makes sense because there are things going on the stage that support it as NOT being fluff or filler. As a pure listening experience, it's not a fair comparison.

    As far at Trick of the Tail, it feels like their best post Gabriel album and to me has no weakness. It's every bit as brilliant an album as Foxtrot or SEBTP.... but without Peter, it's not a fair comparison without his input which can't be overlooked.

  20. #45
    Member spiderfeathers's Avatar
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    I'd say Foxtrot is the most perfect Genesis album, CTTE (as mentioned many times) is the most perfect prog album, and Fish Out Of Water is the most perfect prog solo album ever.

  21. #46
    Member Since: 3/27/2002 MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crawford Glissadevil View Post
    Nope
    ^^^^
    this
    Why is it whenever someone mentions an artist that was clearly progressive (yet not the Symph weenie definition of Prog) do certain people feel compelled to snort "thats not Prog" like a whiny 5th grader?

  22. #47
    Member Since: 3/27/2002 MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeuhlmate View Post
    IMO its the best Genesis album, but prog is a broad genre, and symph is only one of the directions.
    ^^^^^
    and this
    Why is it whenever someone mentions an artist that was clearly progressive (yet not the Symph weenie definition of Prog) do certain people feel compelled to snort "thats not Prog" like a whiny 5th grader?

  23. #48
    Member Since: 3/27/2002 MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER's Avatar
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    even if we limit the scope to the Symph Rock style of Prog, throwing out Canterbury, Zeuhl, Jazz Rock, Avant and Space Rock, it's still not the best

    PFM's Per Un Amico is leaps and bounds greater
    Banco's Io Sono Nato Libero
    Camel's Snow Goose
    Anglagard's Hybris

    and dozens of other Symph albums are way better... and I'm not alone in that opinion

    there's a website where 100 serious Prog fans from around the world with thousands of Prog albums each, of every style of progressive Rock music, rate their albums. Check it out...

    http://gnosis2000.net/cgi-bin/gnosearch.cgi
    Last edited by MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER; 08-29-2018 at 04:39 PM.
    Why is it whenever someone mentions an artist that was clearly progressive (yet not the Symph weenie definition of Prog) do certain people feel compelled to snort "thats not Prog" like a whiny 5th grader?

  24. #49
    Quote Originally Posted by Skullhead View Post
    The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway needs to be taken within context of a theatrical show. If you watch the live concert, then the filler stuff makes sense because there are things going on the stage that support it as NOT being fluff or filler. As a pure listening experience, it's not a fair comparison.
    I would have thought that too. But when I saw The Musical Box do the Lamb concert I didn't like it as much as when I saw them do the earlier shows. There's something about that early stuff that makes it so great to hear live. Yet listening at home the Lamb is my favorite.

    I agree with what you say about Gabriel's input. No matter how great the first few post Gabriel albums are I still miss him and will take everything album from Trespass to The Lamb over anything that came after them.

  25. #50
    Wow, I've received lots of amazing recommendations, will be looking forward to checking out some of those albums. Thanks to everyone who was so kind to suggest titles that could be higher achievement than "Selling England..."

    I am a bit limited in what I can check put, due to my setup which only plays vinyl. I ditched CD player, so not sure if some of the newer albums would be available on vinyl?

    I also found it interesting that, apparently, I am the only one who thinks "Selling England..." is the best Prog album. I was hoping I'd find at least one peer who'd share my enthusiasm.

    Another thing -- I've seen a number of people here label "Selling England..." as sympho-rock. I wasn't aware of that distinction. To me, sympho-rock would be more bands like ELP or even Yes, while Genesis is still more like chamber rock. I'm probably mixing metaphors here, but would like to learn what is the criteria for labeling some recording as sympho-rock?

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