Steve Hackett Sage Gateshead 22 September 2022

HACKETTIXIt has been some time since I saw in York, on which occasion he played a great selection of early Genesis classics. Now I much prefered Genesis when the great Peter Gabriel fronted the band. I have many happy memories of seeing Genesis. The first time I saw them was at Newcastle City Hall where they were bottom of the bill on a CHACKET 1harisma package tour featuring Van Der Graaf Generator, Lindisfarne and then Genesis. After that I saw them several times within a year during the period 1971 and 1972 including performances at the Reading Festival, the Lincoln Festival and Sunderland Locarno supporting Mott the Hoople! I foolishly missed the Foxtrot tour because I had seen the band so many times. I remember my friend Ian went along to see them at the City Hall and came back raving about the gig and Gabriel wearing a fox mask! Is it really 50 years since the release of Foxtrot? I then saw them at Newcastle City Hall supporting Lindisfarne, the Reading Festival again at the time “I Know What I like” was hitting the charts, and finally on the Lamb Lies down on Broadway tour. The next time I saw Genesis Phil Collins was front man on the Trick of the Tail tour at Glasgow Apollo. All of those shows were magnificent. Steve Hackett left the band around that time and I saw the And Then There Were Three tour at Knebworth, supported by Jefferson Starship. Happy days.

HACKET4Steve Hackett was an integral part of the band throughout those days, sitting quietly on a stool, weaving magical music from his Gibson Les Paul. I also saw Steve on a couple of solo tours at Newcastle City Hall and was quite impressed by his own material.

I have foolishly missed Steve Hackett the last couple of times he has played the north-east. I have promised myself not to do so again and to see him every time he plays close by in the future. It was great to run into some old friends, the aforementioned Ian, our mutual friend another Ian and Peter. We chatted about old gig experiences and very happy times. I also ran into a friend from my blog community. A great night already!

The concert comprised two sets. The first was a selection of Steve Hackett solo material. I recognised some of the songs, but many seemed new to me. I enjoyed them much more than I expected. And Steve stood up throughout the performance! Very much the front man with an excellent band supporting him. The second half comprised the entire Foxtrot album, HACKET3starting with the wonderful “Watcher of the Skies” and finishing with the magnificent, multifaceted “Supper’s Ready”. I had forgotten just how great the album was; particularly the opening track and the closing epic. Great credit must be given to vocalist Nad Sylvan who brings the songs to life without totally recreating Peter Gabriel. The guy has his own style, flowing locks and some wonderful elements of showmanship which hark back to the Gabriel days such as the red light eyes at certain points in the songs. Magical. Yet, Steve Hackett remains the front man, reminding us of how much the band and their music was down to him at the time. The encore comprises “Firth of Frith” from the Selling England by the Pound album and ends with another song I recognise from the Trick of the Tail album: “Los Endos”.

HACKETPROGA great night with a great musician to whom prog rock fans (such as me!) and Genesis owe a lot. I bought a programme and a signed copy of Steve’s autobiography! Happy days really are here again!

HACKETBOOKSet 1: Hackett Highlights: Ace of Wands; The Devil’s Cathedral; Spectral Mornings; Every Day; A Tower Struck Down; Camino Royale; Shadow of the Hierophant.

Set 2: Foxtrot: Watcher of the Skies; Time Table; Get ’em Out by Friday; Can-Utility and the Coastliners; Horizons; Supper’s Ready. Encore: Firth of Frith; Myopia / Slogans / Los Endos.

5 responses to this post.

  1. Hi Peter,
    Glad that you enjoyed the gig – Hackett most definitely provides a wonderful evening’s entertainment.
    I saw him at Grimsby just a few nights before you.
    Here is the link to my review.



  2. That should, of course, have read ” a few nights AFTER you.”


  3. I am so envious that you managed to see Gabriel-era Genesis on so many occasions, I just wasn’t going to many gigs in those days, and have only seen them with Collins etc fronting, in 1986, 1998, 2007 and 2022. I have seen Hackett’s Genesis tours four times, but decided to sit this one out as I was really hoping he would do a complete “Lamb” show this time.


    • Posted by vintagerock on October 3, 2022 at 5:45 pm

      Hi John

      Genesis are still good, but for me the Gabriel era was the best. Hackett produces a great show! Happy days Peter


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