Genesis – “I Can’t Dance” – (1991)

So apparently it’s the entire We Can’t Dance album that sounds like it’s from the 80s, and not just this song or that. This was a #7 hit in the U.S. and U.K. (how weird. I wonder if that’s ever happened with another song, peaking at #7 on both continents. Maybe, but I’m sure as hell not gonna look). The song has a bluesy feel which doesn’t really sound like the rest of Genesis’ soft rock feel from this era.

Genesis – “No Son of Mine” – (1991)

Hey, here’s another Genesis song that sounds a lot like, well, every other Genesis song. That is, it sounds a lot like most Genesis songs from the 1980s. Or maybe that’s just how Phil Collins’ voice is. His voice is the 1980s. This was a top 20 hit in the U.S. and a top 10 hit in most European countries. This post is short and sweet – unlike the song, which is long and fairly bitter.

Genesis – “Hold on My Heart” – (1991)

Maybe it’s just me, but Genesis is an “80s band,” even though they were formed in the late 1960s. All of their big hits came from the 1980s – yet this album is from 1991, although it sounds just like everything they did in the 80s. This is your run-of-the-mill soft rock song, but Phil Collins, as is his custom, pushes it over the top from sappy to good.

Justice – “Genesis” – (2007)

You’ve probably heard this song on TV – be it in a commercial or in a show. The first seconds of 30 or so seconds of buildup lead to a great drop at the 38 second mark. It’s one of the best songs in electronic music in the past 10 years. Justice is a French duo from Paris who were nominated for a Grammy for this album which is called “cross” when you speak it but the official title is “” – which is kind of a weird, Prince-y thing to do. Hey, I wonder if Genesis has a song called Justice…


Genesis – “That’s All” – (1983)

“That’s All” is a very recognizable song from Genesis. It was written by Phil Collins and appeared on the bands 1983 self-titled album. It hit #6 in the U.S. and #16 in the UK. And that’s all I have to say about it (yeah, you walked into that one).

#3 – Phil Collins – “In the Air Tonight” – (1981)

I’m pretty sure this stands as the most famous and well known Phil Collins song. Musically, it’s pretty dark. There’s this kind of smoky atmosphere created by these long buzzing chords over that steady drum beat. Right before the final chorus, the drums explode with the very famous and much loved “doo-dom doo-dom doo-dom.” Everybody loves that part. Everybody waits for it. Then everybody starts banging on whatever is around them – steering wheel, desk top, etc. Lyrically it’s mostly uninteresting – just the same thing repeated over and over. There’s that myth that this song is about a drowning that Phil Collins witnessed. But even Phil doesn’t really know what this song’s about. He discovered a cool effect while messing around with some drums in a recording studio and wrote a song around it. This song was used in the first episode of Miami Vice – which cements its status as an 80s legend. Lately, it’s been popping up everywhere – which has to have something to do with its everlasting popularity. It was semi-annoyingly used in the movie The Hangover, where it was introduced to an entire new generation of fans more or less as a joke. But my favorite recent usage has to be in the Cadbury gorilla commercial. That commercial helped propel the song back onto the UK music charts – reaching #14 (and #1 in New Zealand). When you say “80s music,” this is generally the first song that comes to mind.

#28 – Genesis – “Invisible Touch” – (1986)

Genesis had a bunch of great songs in the 80s. I picked “Invisible Touch” to represent them on this list because it’s very upbeat and fun and it was also their biggest, most successful single. It was their first #1 hit. Interestingly, this was the first time a band hit #1 after one of its band members had done it on their own (Phil Collins had 4 #1s before this song made it to the top). Invisible Touch was also the name of the album, and it was a good one. I count four other great singles besides this one – which is a lot. Phil Collins had a huge impact on 80s music – and Genesis’ former lead singer, Peter Gabriel, bumped this song from its #1 spot with “Sledgehammer.”