"Swindon Definitive" - G2enesis live at the Wyvern Theatre, Swindon - September 13, 2002. Review by David Matthews.
Being a Genesis fan of long standing, and in the absence of the real thing, I was thrilled to hear that the tribute band G2enesis were touring the UK and that they would be dropping in on my home town of Swindon. Not a venue that Genesis ever played, in fact very few big bands ever do. So finally Swindon would get to hear the delights of Genesis music played live.
For those of you who have not had the pleasure of seeing this band before (just like me) the band comprises five very talented session musicians who got together because of their mutual love of Genesis. Their set comprises selected tracks from "Nursery Cryme" through to "And Then There Were Three" plus most if not all of "Seconds Out". With this in mind, I knew that there would be lots to look forward to.
The venue was at least a third full with expectant fans, the house music dimmed and the lights went down and the sound of wind chimes began to ring louder, and promptly at 19:30 the band cam on stage and the show started with a very strong version of "Wot Gorilla?". Immediately afterwards came a strong - musically if not vocally - version of "Squonk", and then a brilliant version of "Robbery, Assault & Battery" where both vocals and music seemed to gel effortlessly. For one or two moments I closed my eyes and could almost visualise that it was really Genesis that were playing. Next followed "Deep In The Motherlode" and "Follow You Follow Me" - both were really well received by the enthusiastic and knowledgeable audience.
The next number was "Carpet Crawlers" and you could see that this was the Phil Collins version. Visually, Terry had tried to capture the facial expressions that Phil used to use when reaching some of the higher notes. This was followed by an excellent and almost note perfect acoustic set comprising "For Absent Friends" a beautiful version of "Blood On The Rooftops" leading effortlessly into "In That Quiet Earth". Finally the first half of the show closed with a stirring and extremely well received version of "Afterglow".
For the two hundred plus audience, the interval could not have ended soon enough, we all wanted more. The band obliged with Terry wearing a loud shirt, the second half got off to a rousing start with a brilliant version of "Turn It On Again" and led effortlessly into an extended version of "I Know What I Like". For me the show really took off with the next song, a very powerful and brilliantly played "Watcher of The Skies" (congratulations to Neale) and this led into "Firth Of Fifth". Vocally excellent, musically brilliant and praise to Chris for a perfect guitar solo. Silly story time overtaken by the crowd's knowledge of Genesis and then straight into "The Cinema Show" - keyboard and guitar solos were excellent.
The highlight of the show was just a short story away, and so I closed my eyes to wallow in the delights of "Supper's Ready" (a song that I had not heard sung live for over twenty years - since the "Three Side Live" Tour). The truest test for a tribute band, and they had the audience eating out of the palm of their hands. The band said their goodnights and the audience cheered and stamped their feet. We all knew that the show was not quite over.
The eventual encore comprised "Dance On A Volcano" and the show finished with a brilliant version of "Los Endos". The crowd went wild, but alas this time the house lights came on and the show was over. The show had provided two hours and twenty minutes of brilliantly played music. Much of the vocals had been very strong. Throughout the show, Terry's rapport with the audience was very good and musically the band played almost faultlessly. Even the light show did not disappoint and I like many of the audience went away very satisfied that we had spent £11.50 very wisely. Each member had contributed to an excellent show; Jeff played his drums with passion and was faultless throughout. Neale on keyboards was the epitome of Tony Banks and David, for whom I had not singled praise in the above, played his bass/Rickenbacker and guitar parts impeccably.
This band call themselves "Definitive Genesis" they have managed to capture the atmosphere and style of the mid to late 70's era Genesis. Musically they are brilliant, vocally they are very strong. The only sad point was that the theatre was not full and I would put much of the blame for this on poor pre-concert publicity. I hope that this does not put the band off coming to Swindon again. What more can I say? Nine out of ten!