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    Supper's Ready

    What are your thoughts on this masterpiece, also where would you rank alongside the Yes epics?

    In my opinion Supper's Ready is majestic, the very best song Genesis ever made. The way it builds in the finale never fails to get to me.

    Awaken
    Close to the Edge
    Supper's Ready
    Gates of Delirium
    Ritual
    The Definitive YES Albums

    -The Yes Album-Fragile-Close to the Edge-Tales From Topographic Oceans-
    -Relayer-Going for the One-Drama-90125-Big Generator-Union-Talk-
    -The Ladder-Magnification-Fly From Here-The Quest-

    #2
    It's up there, yes. Not in any order: Supper's Ready, Close to the Edge, Rush' 2112, Tales..., Ommadawn, VdGG's A PLague of LIghthouse Keppers, Camel's Snow Goose are all stonking rock epics.

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      #3
      Not sure how I would rank it alongside Yes epics. Totally different bands/brands with different elements. Genesis were bigger on the drama and emotion. Supper's Ready is indeed a legendary side-long epic often seen as the epitome of the epic side-long prog rock symphony. Historically, it's up there in the top with Close To The Edge, Gates Of Delirium, maybe Tarkus and side one of Thick As A Brick. In fact Supper's Ready may be the definitive art-rock 20 minute track, or shares the same top spot with Close To The Edge.

      I like Supper's Ready better than a lot of Yes epics, and the same as some of them. It's goosebumps song. The build up to the finale, the recurring theme of Lovers Leap and Guaranteed Eternal Sanctuary Man, great Hackett & Banks moments throughout - just magic.

      I've only ever seen it played live with Hackett's band, but it blows my mind every time. The audience yelling out 'A Flower!' in the quiet part right before Willow Farm, just shows how legendary the song is. Supper's Ready - not only a definitive Genesis work, but possibly THE sidelong prog epic track. Maybe even above Close To The Edge, that could be debated.
      Last edited by Soundwaveseeker; 11-19-2022, 04:35 AM.

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        #4
        Supper’s Ready is very cool and the pinnacle of the early Gabriel period, but I wouldn’t class it as my favorite Genesis track; I’m not sure which one I would accord that honor. In any event, Yes and Genesis are such different bands that I could never rank their songs against each other.

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          #5
          I love it, I think it's wonderful, but like Olorin I wouldn't say it's my favorite by them. But it's always an enjoyable listen, especially live. But yeah, the two bands are so different to me that I don't know if I'd want to compare like that.
          Rabin-esque
          my labor of love (and obsessive research)
          rabinesque.blogspot.com

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            #6
            Great song. Longer than any Yes epic, I think! And even then, it isn’t alone on side 2 of Foxtrot. Horizons proceeds it. They fit an awful lot of music on that LP.

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              #7
              I like it, but by no means for me it's the best Genesis track. It just makes my top 20 favourite Genesis tracks:

              20. Tonight, Tonight, Tonight
              19. Supper's Ready
              18. The Carpet Crawlers
              17. Turn it on Again
              16. Entangled
              15. One for the Vine
              14. The Cinema Show
              13. The Musical Box
              12. Domino
              11. Home by the Sea/Second Home by the Sea
              10. Duke's Travels/Duke's End
              09. Land of Confusion
              08. Mama
              07. No Son of Mine
              06. In the Cage
              05. Los Endos
              04. Blood on the Rooftops
              03. Dancing With the Moonlit Knight
              02. Firth of Fifth
              01. Dance on a Volcano​

              I also like the Seconds Out version better than the original studio version.

              It's a very good track, but to me it doesn't stand out amongst other Genesis material the way some of the Yes epics stand out amongst other Yes material.

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                #8
                Both Suppers Ready and CTTE are considered "Prog" epics, but in reality the styles of music are too different to compare. Is Bach's Magnificat better than Chopin's first ballade? I would not try to make that argument.

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                  #9
                  I lack the sophistication to see that the differences between Yes and Genesis—two British symphonic-prog groups from very nearly the same era whose evolutions before and after 1980 were remarkably similar—are sufficiently significant to make comparisons between them a fool’s errand.

                  Interestingly, on the predecessor to this site, I recall there being more than one “CTTE vs. Supper’s Ready” debate, and contrary to the prevailing sense in this thread, many were indeed able to choose one or the other.

                  Strictly in my opinion, “Supper’s Ready” and “Close to the Edge” are fantastic for the same reason: the majestic themes introduced in the first movement are not only recapitulated, but brought to fruition in the end. (I think the same is true of “Machine Messiah,” fwiw; these works introduce motifs or themes early in the running time; only later do we realize that there were like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle forming an unexpected complete and beautiful picture.) “Supper’s Ready,” though, pales in comparison insofar as the middle of the the suite is occupied by separate songs (including “Willow Farm,” though not exclusively) whose insertion is rationalized in the liner notes as constituting a cohesive story (somewhat like the “Fly From Here” suite). Despite this, “Suppers’s Ready” is my favorite Genesis work, in large part due to the magnificent last movement, which has more emotional impact than any part of anything Yes has done. But “Close to the Edge” is a complete, uninterrupted work whose construction is a thing of beauty.

                  Although no one asked, I’ll say that “Gates of Delirium” is my favorite Yes work. Unlike “Supper’s Ready” and “Close to the Edge,” this suite ends very far from where it began, at least in concept. The three movements are quite distinct: no motif from one is repeated in another. The second (“battle”) movement is necessitated by the first; as the demagogue has riled his subjects to violence, war is inevitable. And the third (“Soon”) is a natural outcome of the second; despite the victory theme which closes the battle section, so much destruction has been wrought that a peaceful alternative has at least to be considered, even if “peace” was in 1974 a radical concept. “Close” and “Supper’s” conclude by return by returning to their origins, because conceptually those origins are stable ideas which are challenged throughout, but ultimately prevail. The state of “Gates” at its beginning is untenable—something to be resolved by moving away from it.

                  Anyway, I am not a composer or musician, and I understand very little theory. I just feel like (a) all of these songs are so incredible that they demand analysis to help me understand how these groups could possibly have created them, and (b) music, especially popular music, should be ponderable by those who can’t distinguish an A# from a guitar pick.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I love Suppers Ready. A great classic progressive epic. Adventurous, melodic, challenging instrumentals. My only complaint with it is its clunkiness. Unlike CTTE, which is a perfect masterpiece, SR isn't as cohesive, imo. Most classic prog epic are obviously small songs pieced together and transitioned. Nobody beats Yes in this. Though classic Genesis has some beautiful "build up" transitions, like in case of the bridge of Ripples, their long epics don't hold attention as well as, say Yes epics. Id say even that of TFTO pieces. But hey thats just coming from a fan of both bands with a preference.

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                      #11
                      I adore the song Supper's Ready . I've never really thought about it in comparison to other lengthy songs. I remember playing Seconds Out a thousand times back then and I was very used to that version of the song. In recent years I have enjoyed the original version quite a bit, as well as a couple of the Steve Hackett versions which I think are great. The studio version with Simon Collins and Francis Dunnery on vocals is very good.
                      With regard to other lengthy tunes, I guess a song like CTTE (or certainly 2112) would be more of a kick @ss tune, but it's very hard to compare these songs, they are very different, to me.

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                        #12
                        I can see how one could do a structural analysis of each composition and compare them that way. If one does that then I think Suppers Ready loses because it is a less coherent composition than CTTE, which is pretty much seamless from start to finish. But I find both to be magnificent in their grandeur. The story told in Suppers Ready (the Biblical armageddon) put me off it a bit, but I got over that and appreciate it for its operatic intensity. CTTE is also based on a religious theme (the life of the Buddha) but the lyrics are more subtle or obscure in that regard. Suppers Ready is story telling whereas CTTE is more abstract. Anyway just a stream of consciousness on these two masterpieces.

                        PS Interesting how both came out around the same time in 1972.

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                          #13
                          Gabriel era Genesis were a very theatrical offering. Most of the songs tell a story within a very definite framework. Yes, on the other hand, are more an ideas and concepts band rarely providing a clear storyline.

                          There are some great moments in Suppers Ready, but the whole just doesn't hang together like many of the Yes epics. I suspect that the yin and yang of Gabriel and Banks didn't quite work as well as Howe and Anderson. Post Gabriel, the longer workouts of Dukes Travels/Dukes End, Home by the Sea/Second Home by the Sea and Tonight, Tonight, Tonight are overall more effective.

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                            #14
                            Gotta agree Yorkie. Just listened to SR for the first time ever. Nothin' special. Clunky. Where are the amazin' melodies? Plus the organ bits get repetitive. Not a fan of early Genesis at all. Never liked PG's mannered,croaky voice. Give me ATTW3 any day.

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                              #15
                              Check out the 2018 Hackett version with orchestra and Nad Sylvan singing.

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