This one gets an '8' from me.
All of the tracks on here sound very good, but the material lacks a bit in comparison to the 76-82 bonus disc.
I particularly like Track 1 "On the Shoreline" and Track 4 "Feeding the Fire". The other 3 from the Collins era are somewhat forgettable IMO, though they all sound good.
I am also pleased with how well the Ray Wilson bonus tracks sound as well. These are 3 solid songs that would have definitely deserved a place on a Genesis album had that lineup continued. The downside is that there were other b-sides from this period that have not been included.
Pulling out another one from Jon's "bubbling under" list....
Track 1: "On the Shoreline." I love the song. Can't understand how it got left off of We Can't Dance. I certainly prefer it over "Tell Me Why" or "Way of the World." Nice aggressive mix on this one. Intro is especially nice with lots of stuff swirling around.
Track 2: "Hearts On Fire." Damn! If only all of Nick Davis' mixes were this good. Crazy discrete. Unfortunately, I don't love the song. Completely understand why it was left off of We Can't Dance.
Track 3: "Do the Neurotic." I'm totally dumbfounded how this got left off of Invisible Touch. I like it more than anything on that album. A real butt-kicking instrumental. Another nice mix. Percussion intro swirling all around. Mike & Phil up front, Tony in the rears. Very sweet. A track to show off your system with.
Track 4: "Feeding the Fire." Mix OK. Rears are a little subdued to start, but things get a bit more active during the middle 8. Sonics on this one feel a bit harsh. Don't care too much for the song. I've never felt the whole "what's wrong with the world" songs were this band's strong suit. Better to leave that to Karl Wallinger. (Hmmmmm......World Party in 5.1........that would be amazing! But I digress.....)
Track 5: "I'd Rather Be You." Another nice mix. Tony in stereo in the rears, plus some nice stereo pinging percussion. Unfortunately, another song that I can understand why it was relegated to a b-side.
Track 6: "Anything Now." Can't complain about the mix on this one. Lots of nice stereo stuff happening in the rears. Another one where the sonics are a bit harsh. Song isn't bad, but I'm actually one of the seven people on this planet who really liked Calling All Stations and although this song is OK, I don't like it as much as what's on the album. Although the instrumental break before the last chorus is quite good.
Track 7: "Sign Your Life Away." Interesting song. "Roxanne" guitar with "San Jacinto" keyboard part. Another really good mix. Gotta love it when a lyric that says "it must go around your head" actually goes around your head!
Track 8: "Run Out of Time." Keys and delayed vocals in the rears. Pleasing enough mix. Mellow tune. Of the three Wilson era b-sides featured here, I like this song the best.
Gotta say that I don't think there are any dud mixes on this one. The louder songs have a bit of harshness to them but other than that I'm pretty happy with the fidelity. (Although I'm listening to this right after I listened to the Springsteen Live in NYC SACD which had unimpressive fidelity, so that may have influenced my attitude.) I'll subtract a couple of points for the following reasons:
1) Sonics on the loud songs are a tad harsh.
2) The disc is unnecessarily too short! It's only 45 minutes and they left off four b-sides from the Wilson era. No reason not to include these.
3) There are some great songs here but a few duds as well. But then again, it is a b-sides compilation; and b-sides are by nature supposed to be lesser quality material.....so maybe it gets a pass for that.
Overall I enjoyed listening to this and am sure I'll come back to it again. I give it an 8.
This would be a solid album on its own and I'd definitely buy it. Not just a bunch of leftover songs by any means! Yes, some mixes are better than others, but I've enjoyed them all - best ones would be Hearts On Fire and Anything Now. My only quibble would be that the Wilson tracks sound a tad loud/harsh.
Well, I 8 this 1 2.