On this day in music history: September 14, 19…

On this day in music history: September 14, 1981 – “Abacab”, the eleventh studio album by Genesis is released. Produced by Genesis, it is recorded at The Farm in Chiddingfold, Surrey, UK from May – June 1981. The album continue the bands move away from their original progressive rock sound toward a more accessible mainstream rock sound (as on their previous album “Duke”). During the sessions, the band actually discard a full albums worth of material when they feel it too closely resembles what they’ve done before. As on Collins’ solo debut “Face Value”, Genesis also augment their sound with Earth, Wind & Fire’s horn section The Phenix Horns (on the track “No Reply At All). Initially, the change in musical direction is not a welcome change to some of the bands longtime fans, but widens their fan base, especially in the US. Three songs from the recording sessions “Paperlate”, “Me And Virgil”, and “You Might Recall” are left off the album and later released in the UK as the EP “3 x 3”, and in the US and other territories on the album “Three Sides Live”. “Abacab” is even more successful than its predecessor, spinning off four singles including “No Reply At All” (#29 Pop), “Man On The Corner” (#40 Pop), and the title track (#26 Pop). The albums cover art designed by artist Bill Smith comes in four color variations with the artwork and title graphics embossed on the initial pressings. The album is remastered and reissued in 1994, then again in 2007, CD + DVD set. The DVD disc features a newly remix 5.1 surround version of the album, with four music videos, interviews and a still photos gallery. It is also reissued as a 180 gram vinyl LP by Rhino Records in 2015. “Abacab” peaks at number seven on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 2x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.