The Musical Box -

The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway

June 1, 2023 - Fredericton Playhouse -
Fredericton, New Brunswick Canada


For 30 years now The Musical Box has been amazing audiences with their faithful reproductions of 1970's Genesis concert experiences, so it should have been no surprise that when they rolled into the Fredericton Playhouse with their The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway tour, that the performance was virtually flawless and visually stunning. In 2004, the band secured the license to re-create Genesis's 1974-1975 tour that featured their double album The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway (1974) performed in its entirety, with encores. The band wished to recreate the two-hour show as closely as possible. They observed silent footage of the band performing, gathered
magazine articles and audience member accounts of the shows, and Genesis keyboardist Tony Banks granted them access to The Farm, the band's recording studio in Surrey, to hear the original 24-track master tape of the album so they could isolate each track and take apart passages in the music they deemed too difficult to recreate. The stage show includes use of the 1,200 projection slides used on the original tour

The Fredericton show followed the standard set list covering the entire double album in order including all of song introductions and stories originally done by Peter Gabriel. Musically the performance was meticulously accurate, vocally precise and overall one would swear they were seeing the actual performance from 1975...Standout performances included In The Cage, Back In NYC and The Carpet Crawlers - BUT the absolute highlight of the evening for me during the main body of the show was The Waiting Room (The Evil Jam), which if you are familiar with the album, you would probably consider damn near impossible to re-create - but this band pulled it off brilliantly.

Lead Vocalist Denis Gagné sells the show, convincing you that you are witnessing Peter much so that Gabriel himself attended the band's first show in the UK, and brought his children so "they could see what their father used to do". But the illusion wouldn't work without the amazing musical performances from Sébastien Lamothe (bass & musical director), Ian Benhamou (keyboards), Marc Laflamme (drums and vocals) and especially François Gagnon (guitar), whose re-creation of Steve Hackett's parts were absolutely spot on!
Once the band completed the presentation of The Lamb they launched into an absolutely incredible high-energy version of The Musical Box from the album Nursery Cryme complete with Gagné donning the infamous 'old man' mask from the original Genesis performances. But they weren't done just yet! After a brief time off-stage, the band returned for the highlight of the evening, their encore of The Knife.

If I had to find any faults within the show I would say that the piece The Lamia appeared to suffer from tuning issues, but with the complexity of this performance I think we can forgive them this one. The other minor issue was more related to the venue than the anything the band was doing - sitting in the front row at this theatre placed us within about 3 feet of the stage edge which at times made for an 'unbalanced' audio mix as we were getting almost as much 'stage mix' as we were 'main mix'. While the closeness made for a VERY intimate feel to the performance the sound quality did suffer slightly.
To summarize The Musical Box are as close as one could possibly get to witnessing the classic lineup of Genesis - so much so that, to quote Phil Collins 'I think these guys play it better than we did'.

David Carswell

Setlist The Musical Box:

The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway
Fly On A Windshield
Broadway Melody Of 1974
Cuckoo Cocoon
In The Cage
The Grand Parade Of Lifeless Packaging
Back In N.Y.C.
Hairless Heart
Counting Out Time
The Carpet Crawlers
The Chamber Of 32 Doors
Lilywhite Lilith
The Waiting Room
Here Comes The Supernatural Anaesthetist
The Lamia
Silent Sorrow In Empty Boats
The Colony Of Slippermen
The Light Dies Down On Broadway
Riding The Scree
In The Rapids
The Musical Box
The Knife

Line up The Musical Box:

Denis Gagné:
lead vocals
Sébastien Lamothe:
Ian Benhamou:
Marc Laflamme:
drums and vocals
François Gagnon:

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