Flashback: Peter Gabriel-Era Genesis Performs on Belgian TV in 1972
There’s not a whole lot of video of Genesis performing with Peter Gabriel. The legendary 1974/1975 Lamb Lies Down on Broadway tour ran for 102 dates, but only minuscule fragments of film survive. “I think it’s largely my fault,” Peter Gabriel told Rolling Stone in 2011. “I was a major film obsessive, and I had dreamed of trying to do things properly, so I wouldn’t allow it.”
A handful of earlier Genesis shows were filmed before Gabriel had any such veto power. A 1973 show at Shepperton Studios in England has been circulating for decades, much to the annoyance of Gabriel. “I was promised at the time that it wouldn’t get seen anywhere if I didn’t like it,” he said. “And I didn’t like it, and it still got used.”
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The most riveting Peter Gabriel-era Genesis video comes from a year earlier. For one reason or another, they found themselves playing a 30-minute set for Belgian TV in March 1972. These are the kinds of events often left in the dustbin of history but, somehow, a pretty stellar copy got out. The group performs early prog classics “The Fountain of Salmacis,” “Twilight Alehouse,” “The Musical Box” and “The Return of the Giant Hogweed.”
Drummer Phil Collins and guitarist Steve Hackett had only been in the band for about a year at this point, and Nursery Cryme had been on shelves for four months. They were touring relentlessly at this point and would remain on the road with few breaks until Gabriel quit in 1975, citing burnout. Many of those shows were audiotaped, but this Belgian TV show is pretty much the only place to see them play before Gabriel started dressing up like flowers, old men and cross-dressing foxes.
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