What does it sound like?:
Originally released in 1999, there is now a vinyl release for this often overlooked album. In fact, I was only peripherally aware of it until this reissue. It’s easy to sneer at the later Phil Collins and Genesis efforts, which did often border on the mundane commercial end of the spectrum.. However, let’s not lose sight of the fact that in his prime he was a good composer and an excellent drummer – check out his Brand X work, doubters!
‘A Hot Night in Paris’ focuses on big band style instrumental performances of select songs from his solo discography, as well as his work with Genesis, and was intended as an homage to Collins’ heroes such as Buddy Rich. While these are ok they are a bit easy listening to be honest. Having said that, some of the arrangements are so different from the originals that initially I didn’t even recognise them, until suddenly a familiar theme would emerge. However, this set up really comes into its own and takes off with covers of Miles Davis’s ‘Milestones’ and an extended jam of The Average White Band’s ‘Pick Up the Pieces.’ The album climaxes with an epic performance of the old Genesis set closer ‘Los Endos’. Not sure this is something I’ll listen to very often, but it was an interesting experiment, and one that Collins obviously enjoyed.
What does it all *mean*?
A behind the scenes/performance documentary of the show was available around the time of the original release – it would have been good if this had been rereleased too.
Goes well with…
Gauloises and a glass of pastis
Might suit people who like…
Big band music, jazz, improvisation.