Reviewed by Rosemary Knight
Yesterday evening (10 October 2017) we went to The Lowry theatre in Salford Quays, Manchester to watch The Musical Box perform The Black Show, which is an exceptionally accurate re-enactment of the work of early Genesis and celebrates the 50th anniversary of the band.
To say that we are huge fans of rock band Genesis is a massive understatement, so it is fair to say that we were extremely excited at the prospect of seeing The Musical Box perform their early works live on stage in such an authentic manner. When we were younger, we bought every single and LP record by Genesis as soon as they were released, but we never had the opportunity to watch the band live in concert. Then frontman, Peter Gabriel, left and was replaced by drummer Phil Collins and unfortunately they were never quite the same band. The Musical Box perform Genesis as they were in the early years, when Gabriel was still the lead singer, so that fans like me and my husband can be transported back in time to when Genesis were truly the best band in the world.
The Musical Box are exclusively licensed by Peter Gabriel and Genesis and are devoted to performing all the classics so authentically that we knew we were in for a tremendous treat. The costumes are exactly the same as the original ones worn by Peter Gabriel and the attention to detail is astounding.
The Musical Box came onto the stage to rapturous applause from the packed-out audience and immediately belted out ‘Watcher of the Skies’ from the album ‘Foxtrot’. Other songs played were ‘Selling England by the Pound’, ‘Supper’s Ready’, ‘I Know What I Like’, ‘Musical Box’, ‘Firth of Fifth’, ‘Battle of Epping Forest’ and many other early Genesis classics guaranteed to keep fans happy.
Frontman Dennis Gagne is astounding in his portrayal of Peter Gabriel, both looking and sounding uncannily like the original version. He changed his outlandish costumes constantly, wearing flower hats, batwings and at one point a silver sequinned suit, whilst the other four musicians were dressed entirely in stark white outfits. The show is very creative and visual, showcasing the eccentricity of Genesis and combining both theatre and music.
This performance is aimed mainly at die hard Genesis fans, but younger people would probably enjoy the show just as much. The Musical Box are so much more than just a tribute band and to call them that would be to do them an injustice as they are extremely talented musicians who are recreating the original Genesis experience.
The Musical Box are currently on tour, for more information and tour dates visit www.themusicalbox.net.
For other shows at The Lowry visit www.thelowry.com.
The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, Manchester, M50 3AZ | 0843 208 6000