(All Album Reviews by Octavio Trimmingham)
Released – November, 1974
Steve Hackett: Guitars.
Peter Gabriel: Voices and Flute, with variations on the above and experiments with foreign sounds.
Tony Banks: Keyboards.
Mike Rutherford: Bass and 12-String Guitar.
Phil Collins: Percussion, Vibing & Voicing.
(Brian Eno is also credited with “enosifications”, whatever that might entail. This was done after the majority of the recording was completed though)
"THE LAMB LIES DOWN ON BROADWAY" -
This is the one, this is “IT”! The prog album that all other prog albums look up to. The concept album that all other concept albums look up to. But first and foremost, the Genesis album that all other Genesis albums look up to….but sadly, will never be. These introductory statements should convey to you how I feel about this masterpiece. It is at the very top of the heap of all albums, of every genre, ever made before and since. No other piece of music has affected me the way this album has. Need I say more?
The album, in "simple" terms, tells a convoluted story of a Puerto Rican punk named Rael who lives somewhere in New York city. Throughout the tale, this young man is stuck in a kind of psychologically created limbo between his real life and what might and might not be. The story as a whole is rumored to be about a conflict between Rael’s split personalities and the adventures they take him on as he struggles to break free of the conflicts and back to his old self (this is an interpolation gathered from interviews with band members). But each song addresses a different symbolic conflict or struggle in Rael’s mind, past and present. You know, the things we all worry about every day….love, sex, religion, self-image, death, family, cloning, etc.
The musical content of the album is much too vast to cover in a short review such as this but the songs on this album are a showcase of the amazing musicianship and compositional ability of the band as a whole. The perfectionism is obvious in the playing. Also, talent, creativity, mystery and pure imagination have never been blended so perfectly. These qualities definitely add to the mass appeal of this 2 “must have” cd set. Unfortunately, The Lamb was to be the last Genesis album to generate such interest among their devoted following of fans.
Peter Gabriel seemed to be at the pinnacle of his career during this era yet but it was also a most stressful time period for him as well. He was tired of the road and with his first child at home with his wife, he wanted to be home with his family. He would announce his departure from the band to the rest of the group near the end of The Lamb tour. Phil Collins would eventually become the new lead vocalist for the group in 1976.
This album is a prime example of why early Genesis is still held in such high regard compared to the AOR band they eventually became by decade’s end....groooooan. It is a veritable rock and roll tragedy but we will save that sad story for another day.