Walls of Sound

Strictly Inc. (Tony Banks & Jack Hues)

VSCDT 1575, 1996
Walls of Sound (Remix) ***
Back to You ***
Only Seventeen (Instrumental) **

written by Tony Banks, except (2) by Tony Banks and Nik Kershaw
produced by Tony Banks and Nick Davis; (1) additional production and remix by Chris Hughes and Jack Hues
recorded 1995

Tony Banks' solo excursions have been disasters compared to his fellow Genesis members' outside careers. Despite his key role in Genesis music old and new, his attempts at making pop on his own have fallen flat with the buying public and prog fans alike. I find his work particularly annoying because I hear so many good keyboard riffs struggling under a weight of lousy arrangement and instrumentation.

I had heard positive comments about his latest project with Jack Hues, but the 'Walls of Sound' single is little different from before. Neither "Walls of Sound" nor "Back to You" would have sounded out of place on Bankstatement. Both have passable keyboard riffs, but a good riff alone does not make a song. Both plod on with no excitement, "Back to You" being especially lethargic. The nicest I can say is that they are marginally better than the standard of past projects. "Only Seventeen" is more novel, with a sound just slightly less dominated by cheesy keyboard sounds. Nevertheless, it too just drones on to no apparent purpose.

Henry Potts, 11 Nov 96

Originally posted to alt.music.genesis and rec.music.progressive.

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