"A band by any other name would be... ReGenesis" - The UK's very own Genesis tribute band, live at The Orange, West Kensington, London. Review by Alan Hewitt.
Well, at long last and after much pestering by several TWR readers (where were you, Simon, Gary, Phil?) I finally managed to see the much vaunted UK Genesis cover band. I was in the company of Peter Scriven, esteemed organiser of The Musical Box - Britain's only Genesis music specialist record dealer (my God, there are more plugs in this review than in an electrical store!)
Anyway, on with the review. The Orange itself is a medium sized venue in the middle of West Kensington and when Peter and I arrived after a brief chat with Glyn and Doug (vocalist and keyboard player, respectively), we ensconced ourselves in time to catch the set by the band's support act, Raging Calm, and I must say a few words here about them too. Here was a band whose average age was just 21 and yet they managed to sound thoroughly professional, as if they had been doing this for years. The three musicians, Ben Holloway (lead guitar), Charlie Wittich (guitar/vocals) and Johnny Boux (keyboards) played a set of their own material with a gusto and enjoyment which was impressive and which drew warm applause from an obviously partisan crowd. Personally I hope to see much more of these guys, as their music deserves a far wider audience, and I am sure that they will eventually make it on their own merits.
A short break followed, and then cue dry ice and the emergence of singer Glyn Protheroe clad in black cape and batwings for "Watcher Of The Skies" and from that moment on I was transported back almost twenty years. Having seen footage of all the other major tribute bands both in Europe and Canada/USA, I can say quite honestly that ReGenesis are unique. The musicianship is quite stunning, from the keyboard arpeggios in "Watcher..." to the inspired riffing of their guitarist during "The Knife" and "The Fountain Of Salmacis".
The show drew exclusively from the band's Gabriel years including something from every album from "Trespass" to "The Lamb..." all executed with a style and panache which took my breath away. I admit to having had grave reservations about any band covering Genesis classics but such was the skill of the musicians and the atmosphere generated by both the band and their audience that I could not fail to be impressed.
By the time they reached "Supper's Ready" I was no longer aware that I was watching a cover band, and was past caring! The music took hold and it was an evening I shall remember for a long time - catch them if you can, you won't regret it - I didn't!