Acting Very Strange Import
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Acting Very Strange
Top customer reviews
on September 21, 2004
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
Fittingly titled. "Acting Very Strange" is quite an off-the-cuff 1982 album from Mike Rutherford, and it's joltingly different from his previous solo album, his '80s Genesis work, and his subsequent Mike & the Mechanics work. It seems that Mike clearly didn't give a damn about commercial success with this album. It's certainly interesting, and less polished than what Mike typically delivers, and the guitars dominate the album opposed to keyboards, which, you know, tends to not be the case when there's Tony Banks around. Plus, Mike, just this once, handled the lead vocals himself, which are very ragged and at times sound like a rough-voiced Ian Dury, and at times sound extremely similar to '70s Peter Gabriel (when Mike reaches for high notes), and on the album's best tracks, they really work well, but it's not hard to see why he didn't handle lead vocals on record ever again (just imagine Rutherford singing "Silent Running", "All I Need Is A Miracle", or "The Living Years"). Also interesting is the appearance of Stewart Copeland (Police drummer) on the album. One thing that really works against this record is that certain material is so overly-repetitive, it runs itself into the ground, especially the stomping, corporate rock-style "Maxine"--you'll be burnt out by the time it finally ends after having tediously chanted the title seemingly a zillion times. However, there is a solid, catchy pop-rock tune with "Halfway There"; the title track has catchy verses (although the chorus, with its mock-gorilla intonations, is annoying); and there are a couple tunes--"I Don't Wanna Know", & the bouncy, riffy "Couldn't Get Arrested" (with a grinding guitar sound)--that are irresistibly fun and have naggingly catchy choruses. The album closing ballad "Hideaway" is another in a string of sick-from-loneliness ballads like "Alone Tonight" and "Like It Or Not", and it's quite good in its own right, and it's really interesting to hear the song get Mike's own incredibly sincere, touchingly emotional (though admittedly off-key and painfully hoarse) vocal treatment as opposed to having it sung by Phil Collins. Overall, although the album is at times annoying and tedious, it offers up a good dose of fun and is a refreshing change of pace worth checking out--it's more than just an item to merely complete the collection.
on October 15, 2014
Format: Audio CD
Mike Rutherford makes a second attempt to make a solo career. Well, who can blame Mike after Genesis lost Peter Gabriel and Steve Hackett; two very important writers that ended the band, which turned of what's left of the real Genesis into a crappy Phil Collins back up pop band. Mike has a knack in picking great drummers, since in Smallcreep's Day he got Simon Phillips and in this one, Mike picked the Police's drummer; Stewart Copeland. Noel McCalla does back up vocals for Who's Fooling Who, since it was orginally a song off of McCalla's 1979 solo album "Night time Emotion". The album is not sold here and wasn't even released on cd only on LP. Too bad former Genesis writer/guitarist/founder Anthony Phillips was not on this one as he was in Smallcreep's Day. It would have been interesting if Mike and Ant would have reformed "The Anon" which was the band they were in together before Genesis. Smallcreep's Day and Ant's Geese & The Ghost were nice Phillips/Rutherford albums. A Phillips/Rutherford collaboration would have been better than Mike + The Mechanics and far better than "The trio formerly known as Genesis". Mike sings all the songs here as he did backing vocal for Watcher Of The Skies (New Stereo Mix) and Back In NYC. Mike doesn't have a bad voice and sounds great in Maxine and Acting Very Strange. There were two songs that Mike did "Calypso" a B-side and "Making a Big Mistake" that ended up in the Against All Odds/Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. Too bad the latter didn't end up on this album as that song was one of Mike's best vocal moments. So for the true Genesis fans that thought Abacrap belonged in the trash, get this, Fugitive,Highly Strung (Bonus Edition) [2007 Remaster], Peter Gabriel 4: Security (Remastered) and 1984 instead!!
on April 17, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Acting very strange, indeed. This is far and away the most "fun" album anybody from Genesis ever did. Rutherford decided to let his hair down and have a ball, and his enjoyment shines through from the first note. This is not the mild-mannered upper-class Englishman we're familiar with. This is a Mike Rutherford who, knowing he can't sing to save his life, sings anyway with reckless abandon. The music is lively and toe-tapping, with hooks to grab the listener and not let go. If you're looking for the polish of Mike and the Mechanics, or the creativity of Genesis, you won't find it here. If you're looking for a great time and a lot of fun, you won't do any better.
on October 14, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Who cares about commercial success? Damn. If there were ever a band who didn't have to worry about commercial success, it's Genesis. They proved themselves decades ago. Mike Rutherford, too, has proven himself over and over. Acting Very Strange is a gift for those of us who don't necessarily want the same old same old. Acting Very Strange the song rocks, plain and simple. Hideaway is the equal of any other ballad released around the same time. Maxine! What else do you need? If you liked and are aware of Mike's solo album Smallcreeps Day, this isn't that much of a shock. Yes, it's more "pop," but after the intense prog of SD, it makes sense. This is a musician who isn't content to repeat the past over and over...it's what makes the Mechanics music work. I think Mike's a damned fine singer, at least the equal of anybody singing pop or rock today. No, it's not Genesis, and it's not Phil, but Genesis is not really Phil. Genesis is Mike and Tony, and neither of their solo albums receive the credit they deserve. If you're looking for something with more balls than your average "pop star" Genesis album, try this out. It rocks. Plain and simple.
Most recent customer reviews
Genesis bass player/guitarist Mike Rutherford released his second, and to date last (proper), solo album entitled Acting Very Strange in September of 1982.Read more
Mike Rutherford's Acting Very Strange is a surprisingly good album. Released in 1982, it has some decidedly 80's production values.Read more
At some point between 1978 and 1983, each of the major non-lead-singing members of Genesis (Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford, Steve Hackett, Anthony Phillips) got around to making an...Read more
...you would have been pretty freakin' disappointed, right? I mean, the progressive-pop that comprised the comeback album (90125) for Yes just wouldn't have compared to the...Read more
Who cares about commercial success? Damn. If there were ever a band who didn't have to worry about commercial success, it's Genesis. They proved themselves decades ago.Read more
The last track of this album "Hideaway" is a classic ballad and remains completely out of place on this hideous offering. The guy can't sing, well no better than I can anyway.Read more
I think Rutherford should have taken over from Collins on vocals when Phil left. He's rough sounding but so was Gabriel anyway.Read more
That's exactly what I'm talking about. Precisely. It's like somebody pulled up in a Gold '74 Mustang and said, "Get in the car y'all.Read more
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