However, they did manage a small European tour. This album documents the results, and provides an opportunity to see what might have been had the revised lineup continued. Along with new drummer Nir Z, they settled on a set that included a lot of the band's previous hits. The main problem is that replacing such an iconic figure as Phil Collins, who had for so long been the face and voice of the group, is nearly impossible. Phil was such a charismatic figure that anyone trying to take his place risks coming off as a pale imitation. And this disc show that as exactly what Wilson was. He is not a bad singer, and not a bad performer, but he is just is not on the level of a Phil Collins. His voice just does not project the same energy in a song like the opener, "Land of Confusion", that really demands it.
While it is almost unfair to compare the two, the comparisons are inevitable; this is precisely the position Wilson has been placed in. Take a listen to "The Way They Walk: The Shorts", and you can feel the connection Phil builds with the audience on their chart-topping "Invisible Touch". Wilson just does not have a strong enough presence, and least not right out of the gate, to meet it, nor does he do enough to develop his own unique presence.
Wilson fares a little better on slower tracks such as "Follow You, Follow Me", and "Throwing It All Away", but even these are so iconically Collins that it is difficult to think of anything else when hearing them. Where Wilson does best is in the new material; there are no ghosts of the past to overcome, he is free to make them his own. It's in these songs that the potential of the lineup can be heard. The music is never an issue, the musicians are tight, well-rehearsed and some of the best in the world. The question becomes whether the material is worthy of the band's legacy. Genesis has always maintained a foothold in it's prog rock origins; as much can be heard here in the excellent progressive standards "Home By the Sea" and "Domino". The new contributions here "The Dividing Line" and "Calling All Stations", perhaps the best tracks of the set. These are the rare tracks that the band can show it's musical chops, and Wilson takes control of the stage. But these are the only times the album becomes really interesting, as it quickly reverts back to little more than a cover band by the following track. Most of the new material just wasn't strong enough to take on the road.
If you are a completist, or someone who just cannot get enough Genesis, this may be an interesting addition to your collection, but it is not one you will be returning to very often. Genesis is know as being an outstanding live band; plenty of live albums exist, and every one of them trumps this one in nearly every way. If you did not like "Calling All Stations", you will not enjoy this. If you are a Ray Wilson or Stiltskin fan, it might be worth a listen or two, but even then, they are better choices.