‘Wind & Wuthering’: Top 10 Heights For Genesis In Their Own Special Way
On January 15, 1977, the progressive innovators debuted on the UK chart with their eighth album.
The concerns that Genesis felt about whether they still had a future after the departure of Peter Gabriel were, it’s safe to say, quietened by what happened next.
Their first album with Phil Collins taking over vocal responsibilities, 1976’s A Trick Of The Tail, reportedly sold twice as many copies as Gabriel’s last, The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway. Before the end of that year, it was already time to prove that the success for the retooled group wasn’t a fluke, and on January 15, 1977, they debuted on the UK chart with their eighth album, Wind & Wuthering.
Recorded in Holland, the album was produced by the band with David Hentschel, who’d filled the same role on Trick and whose distinguished credits included engineering duties on both George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass and Elton John’s Goodbye Yellow Brick Road. The new set made a strong start, appearing on that mid-January chart at No.10, in the week in which ABBA’s Arrival spent its first week at No.1 (it returned there for nine weeks from April).
In fact, Genesis were pretty much alone in flying the flag for what was called “progressive” rock in that Top 10. As ABBA mania grew, they were also at No.2 with their Greatest Hits album, while Queen fell from the top with A Day At The Races. The rest of the Top 10 was made up of long-running artists, from Brits Showaddywaddy and Max Bygraves to Americans Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, Slim Whitman, and Glen Campbell. Wings Over America entered at No.13.
The next two weeks saw the Genesis album climb to No.9 and then 7, but that turned out to be its peak, compared to the No.3 achieved by A Trick Of The Tail. The single “Your Own Special Way” just missed the UK Top 40, reaching No.43, and No.62 in America. But the trend was undoubtedly upwards: Wuthering became the band’s first Top 30 album in the US, hitting No.26 and turning gold. The media were kind, too: Sounds, for example, gave the album five stars, and American titles such as Rolling Stone and Billboard were positive.
Listen to the best of Genesis on Apple Music and Spotify.
“We spent about six weeks writing Wind & Wuthering,” Mike Rutherford told Melody Maker on its release, “whereas The Lamb took three months. To be honest, the ones that take longer don’t necessarily come out the best. When things come more easily to us, they tend to be better.
“I also think that since the last album we have more confidence about taking a song in, which we all think is right, and not spending a lot of time in rehearsal trying to make it sound good.”
Buy or stream Wind & Wuthering.
January 16, 2015 at 3:38 pm
I love the atmosphere of the entire “Wind And Wuthering” album, but my favorite tracks are “Blood On the Rooftops” (kudos to Steve Hackett) and “One For the Vine” (kudos to Tony Banks).
January 16, 2015 at 10:36 pm
Exactly my choices, Ron. I’ve always admired Mr. Banks. The inconspicuous rock star, with his fantastic sense of drama and romance
January 16, 2015 at 5:06 pm
Wind & Wuthering was the first Genesis record I bought when I was 12. I bought every previous Genesis album and everything that came after. I bought Rickenbacker guitars and basses. I bought synthesizers. I bought concert videos and watched the medleys over and over and over. “Afterglow” is such a powerful ending to that segment of the concerts. The whole album is an incredible bit of writing and performance. 5 Stars+++++
January 16, 2015 at 8:23 pm
eleveenth Earl of Mar
January 16, 2015 at 11:34 pm
at the First Date, April, 25. 1978
My Friends Play Genesis Wind ….
Since this day i Love Genesis
January 17, 2015 at 12:48 am
One of the few things that could be part of those “time capsules” and, brought again to surface 50 years ahead, still bewilder people. As 38 years have already passed, I like to think they could put it into a 100 years-to-go capsule…
January 17, 2015 at 1:56 pm
Blood On the Rooftops GREAT
January 17, 2015 at 2:34 pm
The whole album is fantastic but i particularly enjoy Blood on the Rooftops and In that qiet earth and its mix with Afteglow.
January 17, 2015 at 8:19 pm
My favorite song on this album is One for the vine
January 17, 2015 at 10:24 pm
Blood On The Rooftops!
January 18, 2015 at 5:40 pm
My Favorite off Wind & Wurthering is “Eleventh Earl of Mar”. Close Seconds would be “All in a Mouses Night” ,”Wot Gorilla” and “Afterglow”.
January 18, 2015 at 5:59 pm
“Blood On the Rooftops”, great atmospheric track, which brings back a lot of memories. I didn’t think “Wind And Wuthering” was as good as “Trick”. I felt their songs were starting to lose their imagery and imagination by this point and, although I liked it, found some of it boring. The beginning of the end imo.
January 18, 2015 at 6:12 pm
“Blood On the Rooftops” no 1, “Afterglow” nov2 and “One for the vine” no 3.
January 19, 2015 at 6:45 pm
One for the Vine and All in a Mouse’s Night are my favourites. …..
January 19, 2015 at 11:25 pm
1. Blood on the Rooftops
2. One for the Vine
January 20, 2015 at 2:00 pm
Compre el disco de vinilo apenas salio a la venta. Con el paso del tiempo me enamore del lado “B” desde All in a mouse’s night hasta afterglow. si debo elegir un solo tema: Blood on the rooftops.
January 20, 2015 at 9:58 pm
Entire Wind&Wuthering is perfect, but All in a Muses’s Night is the best. This music is with me since it was published and will always be.
January 15, 2016 at 12:39 pm
UK info from the BPI.
GENESIS WIND AND WUTHERING VIRGIN CHARISMA 17/12/1976 Gold 16/02/1977
GENESIS WIND AND WUTHERING VIRGIN CHARISMA 17/12/1976 Silver 16/02/1977.
January 15, 2016 at 3:07 pm
A great album and my first exposure to a life-long admiration for Genesis. This album, for me, sounds best in the late fall, early winter — cool weather album. Blood On The Rooftops is a favorite for me (I’m a sucker for word pictures) — “The Grime on the tine is mine all mine … half past nine.” I discovered Trick of The Tail afterwards. And so it goes.
January 15, 2016 at 4:18 pm
I saw Genesis in concert 4 times, including The Lamb. The Wind and Wuthering show was my favorite. So lush and beautiful.
January 15, 2016 at 6:01 pm
Great album, but Afterglow version on ‘Seconds out’ much better – the Mellotron choir on that is spine tingling when Mr Banks whacks up the volume half way through (at “And I would search everywhere…”) The vocal loops on the album were just a bit weak in comparison. Biggest regret of my life not seeing that tour. Happy days. Mr Hackett’s recent revivals have got close though, the real star of Genesis for me.
January 16, 2016 at 7:14 am
Conventional wisdom is that most people prefer *A Trick Of The Tail* over this one, but my heart gives this one the edge, as great as *ATotT* is. There’s a certain sprawl about it that’s not matched anywhere else in Genesis’ catalog, and a certain “Romantic” quality. AIUI, this is one of Tony Banks’ favorite Genesis albums.
January 16, 2016 at 8:01 pm
Genesis is always super
March 30, 2017 at 8:54 pm
A patchy album but what I love best is Hackett’s guitar solo in Eleventh Earl of Mar, which a critic (I think in Circus magazine!) described as “slashing and almost punkish” – yeah! It’z really cool.