Phil Collins - Face Value / Both Sides: Collins is a survivor
David Bowie's death reminded us we need to celebrate our artists while we can, however much they divide opinion.
Drummer, singer and songwriter Phil Collins turns 65 this month and to mark the milestone, has remastered two of his biggest albums, both with bonus tracks of previously unreleased material.
Face Value, his debut solo album, released in 1981, still sounds fresh - just wait for that iconic drum on In The Air Tonight and try to sit still for upbeat I Missed Again.
The Extra Values disc includes rousing live versions and the original cassette ‘demo’ version of ballad The Roof Is Leaking recorded with Eric Clapton on guitar.
Yes, some of the instrumentation sounds cheesy now, but this was the Eighties. Both Sides was released in 1993 to a lukewarm reception - Collins plays all the instruments and used his first vocal takes on the “hugely personal” songs, making it his “favourite album”.
Plagued with health problems that meant he hasn’t been able to play drums since 2009, his soulful Can’t Turn Back The Years takes on poignant significance - and poetic Both Sides could’ve been written yesterday, it’s that relevant.
Collins thinks some of his songs were overlooked, but this year he won’t be.
Like his lyrics say, he’s a survivor.