Both Sides

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Both Sides
Studio album by Phil Collins
Released 9 November 1993
Recorded 1992–1993
Length 67:10
Label Virgin (UK and Ireland)
Atlantic (US and Canada)
WEA (Rest of the world)
Producer Phil Collins
Phil Collins chronology
Serious Hits... Live!
Both Sides
Dance into the Light
Singles from Both Sides
  1. "Both Sides of the Story"
    Released: 18 October 1993
  2. "Everyday"
    Released: 27 January 1994
  3. "We Wait and We Wonder"
    Released: 29 April 1994
  4. "Can't Turn Back the Years"
    Released: 1994 (Promo)[1]
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[2]
Entertainment Weekly B− link
Rolling Stone 2.5/5 stars link

Both Sides is the fifth solo studio by English singer-songwriter Phil Collins'. It was recorded in 1992 and released in the autumn of 1993.

A special two-disc edition of the album featuring the Live from the Board – Official Bootleg EP[3] as a second disc,[4] titled Far Side... of the World: Gold Souvenir Tour Edition after the final leg of the Both Sides tour, was released in Southeast Asia and Australia in 1995. It peaked at No. 13 in Australia.[5]


Both Sides was notable for the fact that Collins made it entirely on his own, without usual collaborators producer Hugh Padgham, guitarist Daryl Stuermer, bassist Leland Sklar and the Phenix Horns. After recording demos at home, the album was finished in just six weeks at the Farm with the help of producer/engineer Paul Gomersall. For the first and only time in his career, Collins played all the instruments himself as well as taking care of the primary production duties. In addition, Collins wrote sleeve notes explaining the meaning of each song, another first.

Collins claims this album to be the one of which he is most proud.[citation needed] It is seen as his most personal album. "In the end I had 17 songs, and kicked out all those that did not fit that mood. As far as performance is concerned this has more heart and soul than anything I have done before."[6]

Collins expresses both his feelings and personal problems and addresses political issues over the course of the album. He touches on politics and "the daily cloud of terrorism Britain seems to live under" on "We Wait and We Wonder", but also on a maturing disenchantment with the youth culture on "We're Sons of Our Fathers". The melancholy style of the majority of the songs—as a return to the style of his early albums Face Value and Hello, I Must Be Going!—was because the songs chronicled the widely publicised break-up of his second marriage to Jill Tavelman. About the influence of his emotions on his songs he adds: "I have reached this point. Very intimate, very private songs seem to flow easily. I suddenly felt I had a lot to say."[6]

Critical response[edit]

Both Sides was met with lukewarm reveiws, particularly on adult contemporary radio, being criticised for its over reliance on slow, dark and downbeat songs. The album was preceded by the title track as the first single, reaching No. 7 in the UK and only No. 25 in the U.S. (in a disappointing chart performance considering the lead singles from his two previous albums were No. 1 hits in America). The album itself was released weeks later only reaching to No. 13 in the U.S., though it still went platinum there. Both Sides was a hit in other European countries such as the UK (where it was the 8th biggest-selling album of 1993, though it was only available for the final eight weeks of the year), Germany or Switzerland, reaching No. 1 all over Europe, but with a limited success, due to the lack of hit singles. The ballad "Everyday", released in early 1994, was another Top 20 hit in the UK, peaking at No. 15, and became the biggest hit single from the album in the U..S, reaching No. 24 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 2 on the Adult Contemporary chart. The third and last single, "We Wait and We Wonder"—a political anthem on which Collins plays bagpipes—reached only No. 45 in the UK.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written, performed and produced by Phil Collins.

No. Title Length
1. "Both Sides of the Story"   6:42
2. "Can't Turn Back the Years"   4:40
3. "Everyday"   5:43
4. "I've Forgotten Everything"   5:15
5. "We're Sons of Our Fathers"   6:24
6. "Can't Find My Way"   5:09
7. "Survivors"   6:05
8. "We Fly So Close"   7:33
9. "There's a Place for Us"   6:52
10. "We Wait and We Wonder"   7:01
11. "Please Come Out Tonight"   5:46
  • Engineered by Paul Gomersall
  • Assistant Engineer: Mark Robinson
  • Mastered by Bob Ludwig
  • Photography by Trevor Key

Unreleased tracks[edit]

Several instrumental tracks were recorded and subsequently released as extra tracks on both singles for "Everyday" and "We Wait and We Wonder". These instrumental tracks include "Rad Dudeski" and "Don't Call Me Ashley". In addition, there were other various B-sides that were released from the Both Sides sessions ("Take Me with You", "For a Friend") and a few cover songs that made it on other various albums.

There has been discussion about a song called "Deep Water Town". It is from the Both Sides sessions and did not make the cut. It was never released or widely circulated amongst collectors. A very early "demo" of it was released on the official fanclub in 2011. In fact, this is more an improvisation from which only a bit of the chorus will make it to the completed track. This completed track features an atmospheric drum machine, keyboard sounds (no piano) and vocals by Phil telling a story about a disaster at sea and families left behind.

In November 2004, Phil himself commented on the song on the forum of his old official website: "DEEP WATER TOWN...again I scratch my head and ask how did someone get it... I don't think it was ever released, or am I going slowly senile. It was a pretty song about a disaster at sea, and the families left behind. Obviously one of my more cheerful pre-divorce moments. Circa Both Sides...."[7]

The Both Sides of the World Tour[edit]

Although Both Sides failed to reach the same heights as ...But Seriously and No Jacket Required, the supporting tour was a huge success. A mammoth 13-month tour, which saw over 150 performances over 6 continents, The Both Sides of the World Tour once again proved Collins to be one of the most popular artists in the World.

Charts and certifications[edit]


  1. ^ Phil Collins "Can't Turn Back the Years" at Discogs
  2. ^ Both Sides at AllMusic. Retrieved July 30, 2014.
  3. ^ a b "Phil Collins - Live From The Board - Official Bootleg (CD)". Discogs. Retrieved December 6, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Phil Collins Far Side Of The World Tour '95 Australian 2 CD album set (Double CD) (42406)". Retrieved December 6, 2014. 
  5. ^ " - Phil Collins - Far Side... Of The World". Hung Medien. Retrieved December 6, 2014. 
  6. ^ a b Genesis News Com [it]: Phil Collins – Both Sides – CD review. Retrieved 27 April 2012.
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides". Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  9. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  10. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  11. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  12. ^ "Item Display – RPM – Library and Archives Canada". Library and Archives Canada. 31 March 2004. Retrieved 10 October 2012. 
  13. ^ . 8/1/1994 Retrieved 10 October 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  14. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  15. ^ source: Pennanen, Timo: Sisältää hitin - levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972. Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava, 2006. ISBN 9789511210535. page: 280
  16. ^ "InfoDisc : Tous les "Chart Runs" des Albums classés depuis 1985 dans le Top Albums Officiel". InfoDisk (SNEP). Retrieved 10 October 2012. 
  17. ^ "Top 100 Longplay". GfK Entertainment. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  18. ^ "Gli album più venduti del 1993" (in Italian). Retrieved 9 February 2012. 
  19. ^
  20. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides". Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  21. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides". Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  22. ^ "Hits of the World". Billboard. 4/12/1993. Retrieved 9 February 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  23. ^ Salaverri, Fernando (September 2005). "Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002" (1st ed.). Spain: Fundación Autor-SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2. 
  24. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides". Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  25. ^ "Phil Collins – Both Sides". Hung Medien. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  26. ^ November 1993 "20 November 1993 Top 40 UK Albums Archive". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
  27. ^ "Phil Collins Album & Song Chart History" Billboard 200 for Phil Collins.
  28. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 1994 Albums". Australian Recording Industry Association. 
  29. ^ "Austrian album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in German). IFPI Austria.  Enter Phil Collins in the field Interpret. Enter Both Sides in the field Titel. Select album in the field Format. Click Suchen
  30. ^ "Ultratop − Goud en Platina – 1994". Ultratop & Hung Medien / 
  31. ^ "Brazilian album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Portuguese). Associação Brasileira dos Produtores de Discos. 
  32. ^ "Danish album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides". IFPI Denmark. 
  33. ^ "French album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in French). InfoDisc.  Select PHIL COLLINS and click OK
  34. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Phil Collins; 'Both Sides')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. 
  35. ^ "Italian album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Italian). Federation of the Italian Music Industry. Retrieved 25 July 2012.  Select Album e Compilation in the field Sezione. Enter Phil Collins in the field Filtra. The certification will load automatically
  36. ^ "Japanese album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Japanese). Recording Industry Association of Japan. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  37. ^ "Dutch album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Dutch). Nederlandse Vereniging van Producenten en Importeurs van beeld- en geluidsdragers. Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  38. ^ "Norwegian album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Norwegian). IFPI Norway. 
  39. ^ "Portuguese album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (in Portuguese). Associação Fonográfica Portuguesa. 
  40. ^ "Spanish album certifications – Phil Collins – Both Sides" (PDF) (in Spanish). Productores de Música de España.  Select the "Chart", enter ' in the field "Year". Select ' in the field "Semana". Click on "Search Charts"
  41. ^ "Guld- och Platinacertifikat − År 1987−1998" (PDF) (in Swedish). IFPI Sweden. 
  42. ^ "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Phil Collins; 'Both Sides')". Hung Medien. 
  43. ^ "British album certifications – Both Sides of the Story". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Both Sides of the Story in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select album in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search
  44. ^ "American album certifications – Both Sides". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH
Preceded by
Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell by Meat Loaf
UK number one album
20 November 1993 – 26 November 1993
Succeeded by
Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell by Meat Loaf