Mojo (Publisher) - 3/01, p.82
"...It sounds very muddy...but tracks like live favorite 'The Knife' found the group establishing a recognizable identity..."
Composers: Tony Banks; Mike Rutherford ; Anthony Phillips Band.
Genesis (U.K. Band): Anthony Phillips (acoustic 12-string guitar, dulcimer); Mike Rutherford (bass instrument); Peter Gabriel (bass drum); Tony Banks, John Mayhew.
Personnel: Mike Rutherford (vocals, guitar, acoustic 12-string guitar, 12-string guitar, nylon-string guitar, cello, electric bass); Anthony Phillips (vocals, guitar, electric guitar, 12-string guitar); Tony Banks (vocals, guitar, piano, organ, Mellotron, keyboards); Anthony Phillips Band (vocals, acoustic guitar, acoustic 12-string guitar, electric guitar, 12-string guitar, dulcimer); Peter Gabriel (vocals, flute, accordion, drums, tambourine, percussion); John Mayhew (vocals, drums, percussion).
Audio Mixer: Nick Davis .
Audio Remasterers: Chris Blair; Geoff Callingham; Nick Davis ; Tony Cousins.
Recording information: Trident Studios, London, England.
Photographer: Lewis Lee.
Arrangers: Peter Gabriel; Anthony Phillips; Tony Banks; Mike Rutherford ; Anthony Phillips Band.
TRESPASS is more pastoral and low-key than the Genesis albums that followed it. The interplay between guitarist Anthony Phillips and bassist Mike Rutherford finds the group at its folkiest and most subdued. Tony Banks hadn't yet turned to the synthesizer. Peter Gabriel had not yet reached the heights of poetic socio-political broadside that would mark such albums as FOXTROT. The anomaly here is "The Knife," a gloriously bombastic track full of classical motifs, thundering riffs and rhythms, and a strong anti-war message. It would become one of the most-loved early Genesis tunes.
Drummer John Mayhew might be the Pete Best of prog-rock, as he was Genesis's original drummer, ultimately replaced by future bandleader Phil Collins. On this, Mayhew's final recording with Genesis, he shows taste and restraint, laying out for long sections while the sonic tapestries of the guitars and keyboards unfold. Though not an essential pick in the Genesis catalogue, TRESPASS is a satisfying snapshot of this important band's formative development.