"Hidden treasure revealed" - Genesis in concert at the Campo Sportivo, Fel Tre (BL), Italy 18th August 1972. Review by Alan Hewitt. Memorabilia and photographs courtesy of Mino Profumo/ Armando Gallo/ TWR archive.
Even after all these years of collecting it is a joy when once in a while a recording surfaces which takes you by surprise. Such is the case with this long hidden recording from Genesis’ second Italian tour in 1972.
With work still ongoing on the new album which would emerge as Foxtrot some two months after this show took place, the band were still effectively road testing material from it as is demonstrated by Peter’s introduction of Watcher Of The Skies as a “new” number. Here we have Watcher in not quite its embryonic state but nevertheless, quite a way from the symphonic masterpiece it was subsequently to become. Here it is the interplay between Tony and Steve, underpinned by some meaty bass lines from Mike which propels things along.
Peter’s introduction to Twilight Alehouse is greeted by almost silence so either the audience were not familiar with it or didn’t understand his introduction. There is some confusing editing here as Peter next introduces The Fountain Of Salmacis before the band after much more tuning go into a jaunty Twilight Alehouse which makes me wonder of this is not yet another of those famous “hidden” recordings whose tracks have been re-jigged and omitted to catch out anyone circulating them without permission! Whatever the reason, we have an extremely enjoyable and indeed, audible rendering of this classic slice of Genesis eccentricity. Even the thud of Peter’s bass drum can be clearly heard and indeed the over all quality of the entire recording is substantially better than any of the others available from this tour.
Fountain Of Salmacis eventually makes its appearance unheralded but no fanfare is really necessary for this wonderful example of Genesis storytelling. Here the entire band put in a remarkable performance full of dark humour and drama with once again Mike’s bass well to the fore in the mix but battling away against the equally combative Messrs Banks and Hackett. Gabriel’s vocal is remarkably clear here making this another joy to hear.
Can Utility & The Coastliners is introduced as being from the new album and no further ado. Always a delight to hear and in such excellent quality as it is here makes this another essential addition to any serious collector’s collection. The set is rounded off by Musical Box although intriguingly enough Peter’s introduction which states that “the next one is also from Nursery Cryme” makes me wonder if in fact there are tracks which have been edited out of this recording for one reason or another as the shows which immediately follow this one have much fuller track listings including several which do not appear on this recording. No matter, as what we do have of it more than makes up for those omissions and makes this one of the most enjoyable vintage recordings I have heard in many a year!