“All in a Pacific Road Night” - G2 live at the Pacific Road Arts Centre Birkenhead on Friday 29th February 2008. Review by Alan Hewitt. Photos by Sue Heather.
Sorry for the slightly misleading title, folks - the furry creature to which I allude failed to show up tonight! However, that didn’t spoil the evening’s proceedings not one bit. It has been a while since I was last at the Pacific Road for a gig (Steve Hackett ‘05 I think?) but at last G2 have finally got themselves a gig “up Norf” that I can actually get to and home from without any hassle and so here we are. I am sure that the band don’t really need any introduction to fans who know the UK tribute band circuit and especially after their two stunning gigs at Charterhouse last November which were reviewed in our last issue. G2 are without doubt, the UK’s premier Genesis tribute band and tonight’s gig was really a re-affirmation of that.
Opening the show with Watcher Of The Skies, the band were certainly in no mood to take any prisoners and they delivered the track in fine style. Dancing With The Moonlit Knight and the obligatory “Lamb Stew” were also delivered impeccably, the latter served up piping hot and delicious! Kudos to both Chris and Piers during this, they delivered the tracks superbly well and Chris is the closest thing to a Steve Hackett clone that I have ever seen or heard for that matter, his playing on Fly On A Windshield really did send goose-bumps up and down my spine.
Another favourite next in the extended epic One For The Vine and here the entire band combined to create pure magic, Terry delivering a magical vocal and David and Jeff augmenting the performance with great skill and style. Once again, it was as if the band were playing a gig chock-full of my personal Genesis favourites and Entangled was another delight. Here once again, Piers and Chris really created something magical which was awe inspiring to watch.
Another surprise next in the shape of Inside & Out, a sod of a song to play which is probably why Genesis themselves didn’t do it that often in concert. Here it was, performed impeccably with Terry delivering the tale of injustice with just the right amount of pathos in his voice while the rest of the band raged around him another surprise was the segue between this and the classic shortened version of Musical Box which worked really well.
After see another brave soul attempt the piano intro to the next song the week before; I kept my fingers crossed as Terry announced Firth Of Fifth. Well, I have to say, I doubt if even Mr Banks himself could have played it with any greater aplomb - bravo Piers! This is a bona fide classic song and the rest of it was delivered faultlessly by all concerned and once again, Chris’ guitar solo really hit the spot for me again.
Terry’s brilliantly funny intro to Supper’s Ready set the scene for yet another classic performance. I don’t know how many times I have heard this track performed by Genesis themselves or one or more of the tribute acts, but you can’t grow bored of it. Not when it is performed with such passion as it was here - was I the only one seeing the angel in the sun at the end? I think not!
With Supper’s Ready over you would think that the band would have taken their bows and retired before encores. No such luck tonight. The rhythmic heartbeat intro to In The Cage set us off on yet another adventure and one in which Terry, David and Jeff stole the show. Seldom have I heard a rhythm section sound so tight. The claustrophobic atmosphere of the song was easily captured by the band and Terry’s vocal carried just the right amount of angst and anguish to really generate an atmosphere.
The scene quietened down next with renderings of Cinema Show and Blood On The Rooftops. The latter is in danger of toppling Afterglow from its position as my all-time favourite Genesis track and once again, full credit to Chris and Piers for delivering the full magic of this underrated classic.
Then for once, we were at home to “Mr Cock-Up” as Chris’ effects pedals left him silent at the very beginning of Ripples! Normal service was resumed however and once again, an impeccable performance by everyone and it was at this point that the band took their well deserved bows after playing for well over two hours.
Encores were expected and not long in coming and what a way to end a show? Dance On A Volcano and Los Endos with a magnificent five minutes of thunder from Jeff Philips. All this fuss that’s made about bands with the capacity for “double drumming”. Well, when you have a drummer of Jeff’s calibre you don’t need double drumming. I have seldom seen a drum kit attacked in such a fashion before and he didn’t even break sweat doing it! The show over I think everyone who was there realised they had been in the presence of something special - I certainly enjoyed myself immensely. If you haven’t had the pleasure of seeing G2 yet, get yourself to one of their shows and you will soon realise that this is what paying a genuine “tribute” is all about - excellent stuff!