Phil Collins has been on the receiving end of a lot of shit, and rightfully so. He went from playing drums and singing in the greatest prog rock band of all-time, Genesis, to being the male version of Anne Murray, except he wrote all of his mostly atrocious solo material, and Anne Murray never wrote a song in her life. Nevertheless, we at BSM love Phil Collins and we will come to his defense anytime someone takes a cheap shot at his solo career.
Take an iconic song like “In the Air Tonight”; it’s kind of OK even though it’s been played to death and erroneously gets credit for coming up with THAT drum sound. You know the one I’m talking about. However, he’s just replicating the drum sounds on “Intruder” from Peter Gabriel’s third solo album, aka Melt.
Collins played drums on “Intruder”, which has been cited as the first use of Collins’ ‘gated drum’ sound. This effect was created by Steve Lillywhite, Collins and Hugh Padgham, via experiments in response to Gabriel’s request that Collins and Jerry Marotta not use cymbals on the album’s sessions. The drum sound on this album has been noted by Public Image Ltd as influencing the sound on their album Flowers of Romance, whose engineer, Nick Launay, was in turn employed by Collins to assist him with his first solo album, Face Value.
Anyway, it seems like almost everybody has forgotten about Hedwig and the Angry Inch, which is an incredible film with a superlative sound track. Here’s a clip of the Tommy Gnosis version of “Wicked Little Town.” This one is cool because it has Chinese/Japanese subtitles. Enjoy.