Phil Collins left Genesis following the We Can't Dance tour and many observers expected Tony Banks and Michael Rutherford to finally call it a day. They decided to persevere instead, hiring former Stiltskin vocalist Ray Wilson to replace Collins. Given that Stiltskin was a European neo-prog band, it isn't a total surprise that Genesis returned to their art rock roots on Calling All Stations, their first album with Wilson. The music on Calling All Stations is long, dense, and lugubrious, but it's given the same immaculate, pristine production that was the hallmark of their adult contemporary work with Collins. It wants to be an art rock album, but not at the expense of losing the pop audience -- which makes it all the stranger that the group doesn't really write pop songs on Calling All Stations. That may be because Wilson's voice isn't suited for pop, but works well with languid, synthesized prog settings. But even ponderous prog rock has to have musical themes worth exploring, and on that level, Genesis come up dry on Calling All Stations.
AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine