Wilson, Ray - Live And Acoustic

Year of Release: 2002
Label: InsideOut Music
Catalog Number: IOMCD 102
Format: CD
Total Time: 69:40:00

It isn't difficult to imagine the many faces of disbelief when the media announced that Ray Wilson had replaced Phil Collins in Genesis. It was almost the same shock as when Trevor Horn replaced Jon Anderson in Yes. But just who was Ray Wilson? Wilson had been the lead singer with the band Stiltskin, but it was only because one of their songs was used for a commercial that they got known by the general public, not because of their musical merit. In the end, just like Trevor Horn with the Yes album Drama, the Genesis album Calling All Stations featuring Wilson isn't the bad album the media made us think it is. It's different, but certainly not bad. That's why this current Wilson live album is such an important release because it gives Ray the chance to illustrate, in an unplugged setting, what he's really capable of.

Recorded at the 2001 Edinburgh International Festival, Ray not only delivers some original compositions but also some Genesis highlights whether band or solo efforts. The album starts with a rendition of the Phil Collins classic "In The Air Tonight" featuring the extra soulful voice of Amanda Lyon. It's followed by the Stiltskin megahit "Inside." There's the unexpected version of Peter Gabriel's "Biko" and a selection of Wilson's all-time favourites ranging from Dylan's "Forever Young" to Springsteen's "Born To Run" before tackling the Eagles' "Desperado." Next to six Wilson originals, music lovers will be interested to hear how Genesis material translates itself to the unplugged formula. First up are "Shipwrecked" and "Not About Us" from the Calling All Stations album, still Ray's one and only album with Genesis. Scottish born and bred Wilson even throws some humour into the set when he asks the audience if anyone out there is into the "old" Genesis, only to see of these people are still alive! His slightly harsh voice reminds us a bit of Gabriel during "Lover's Leap" from Supper's Ready, "The Carpet Crawlers" and "Mama," all sounding remarkably different without keyboards.

As told so many times before, once a song sounds perfect with just voice and guitar or voice and piano, you can add whatever arrangement and it still will remain a wonderful song. Nice example here in the form of "Another Day." It also illustrates that, should Ray Wilson decide to backpack his way around the world, he would not be your everyday busker. For sure Live And Acoustic will have everyone approach the artist Ray Wilson with much more respect from now on, the kind of respect "the last Genesis singer" merited since day one!

In The Air Tonight / Inside / Rest In Peace / Shipwrecked / Not About Us / Another Day / Sarah / Gypsy / Swing Your Bag / Always In My Heart / Lovers Leap (taken from Supper?s Ready) / The Carpet Crawlers / Biko / Mama / Forever Young / Desperado / Born To Run / The Airport Song

Ray Wilson - vocals, acoustic guitar
Amanda Lyon - vocals, keyboards
Steve Wilson - guitars and vocals

Guaranteed Pure - Swing Your Bag
Stiltskin - The Minds Eye
Genesis - Calling All Stations
Live And Acoustic (2002)
Change (2003)
The Next Best Thing (2004)
Ray Wilson Live (2005)
Stiltskin - She (2006)
Propaganda Man (2008)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin UK

Added: October 1st 2002
Reviewer: John "Bobo" Bollenberg

Artist website: www.raywilson.net
Hits: 579
Language: english


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