Gabriel-era Genesis

Published on July 2nd, 2014

The Musical Box


The Musical Box
Photo: GustavoQuintas

The Musical Box resurrects Peter Gabriel-era Genesis

Not many know that the prog-pop band Genesis has a tribute act based in Canada endorsed by the original members of Genesis. The Musical Box has even been granted access to Genesis’ archives and master tapes to recreate the band’s early 1970s shows, when Peter Gabriel was Genesis’ frontman. Fans too young to have seen the band with Gabriel or old enough to remember that version of Genesis should both be impressed by The Musical Box. They don’t just play the songs of Genesis; they open a rift in time to recreate the era with immaculate detail. They incorporate vintage instruments and frontman Denis Gagné not only dons the familiar and bizarre costumes Gabriel wore, he tells the surreal stories Gabriel often offered as his bandmates retuned their instruments.


The Musical Box
Photo: GustavoQuintas

Whereas Gabriel famously donned the costumes to conceal a sense of stage fright, Gagné does it with the gusto of a hardcore fan. “Funnily enough, when I was in college, I was trying to put something together to play these songs or even just lip-synch the show,” he says speaking via phone about early attempts to become Gabriel in Genesis. He brings up the band’s longest-ever track, the 23-minute-plus opus “Supper’s Ready,” from its 1972 album Foxtrot. “One of my dreams when I was a kid was to play ‘Supper’s Ready’ once in my life, and now I can’t count how many times I’ve played that song,” he says with a laugh.

It is one of the songs set to close out the band’s second ever visit to South Florida (their first was in 2012, to re-create the live experience of Genesis’ epic 1974 double album, The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway). This time, though, they are recreating a show that Gagné calls a personal favorite because of the amount of costume changes involved. This show is all about the 40th anniversary of the Selling England By the Pound tour. It’s something the five musicians in the band are very familiar with. After all, Gagné notes, the band first formed to commemorate the 20th anniversary of when that tour stopped into Montreal. With that much experience, rest assured these masters of music and time won’t let down.

The Muscial Box perform July 25, at 8pm at the Parker Playhouse.
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~ Hans Morgenstern | The Independent Ethos |

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