Originally created 11/11/05

Reunions could dish out some sour notes



Music fans, be wary: Genesis might be opening Pandora's box.

This week, Phil Collins took time out from a tour in the Middle East to talk a little about Genesis and the possibility that the 1970s prog-rock and '80s schlock-rock outfit might re-form. He even entertained the idea of stepping out of the spotlight, returning to the drums - his original Genesis gig - and allowing original frontman Peter Gabriel a chance to sing with the band once again.

Although it's a bad idea in general, it might give some other long-absent musical acts all the encouragement they need to stage a comeback. The truth is, more and more acts, both good and bad, are dusting off their back catalogs and hitting the road. For some, such as The Doors or newly minted TV star INXS, even death can't derail the nostalgia express.

Still, there are acts out there, acts that are not milking their handful of hits, that don't need this sort of success story waved in front of their faces. Here are a few groups we'd rather not hear from again:

- Emerson, Lake & Palmer - Everything that is excessive about prog rock can be found in the phony symphonic sounds of this trio. Overwrought and overserious, these guys actually thought they were writing classical music for the late 20th century. In reality, they were putting a generation of earnest young men to sleep beneath their black-light posters.

- Yes - There still is a fervent following for this band. I'm not sure what they are called. Yes Men, perhaps? It makes no difference, because as far as I'm concerned, any act willing to take up rock capes, fantasy landscape album covers and an Amazing Grace bass solo has seen its day come and go.

- The Monkees - There's no denying that there are some catchy tunes released under The Monkees' boilerplate, but very few were recorded by the members of the band. Despite what purists might say, The Monkees were a manufactured act as viable as The Archies or The Partridge Family, and watching a quartet of actors bash through the hits does not make for a Pleasant Valley Sunday.

- Frankie Goes to Hollywood - Full disclosure time. There once was a copy of this English act's first album in the Uhles music library. I fully acknowledge my mistake and will spend the rest of my life paying penance for that error. Let's not allow future generations, generations that never had to put up with those stupid "Frankie Says ..." T-shirts, to repeat my painful history.

- Asia - The logical link between prog rock and the early '80s arena bands, this supergroup, which featured former members of Emerson, Lake & Palmer, King Crimson and Uriah Heep, went where no act could follow. Well, no act except Journey, Foreigner, Styx, Toto, Boston ...

Reach Steven Uhles at (706) 823-3626 or steven.uhles@augustachronicle.com.