No Reply at All

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"No Reply at All"
Single by Genesis
from the album Abacab
B-side Naminanu / Dodo
Released 9 September 1981
Format 7" / 12"
Recorded 1981
Genre Pop
Length 4:40
Label Charisma/Virgin (UK)
Atlantic (US)
Writer(s) Tony Banks, Phil Collins, Mike Rutherford
Producer(s) Genesis
Genesis singles chronology
"No Reply at All"
"Keep It Dark"
Abacab track listing
"No Reply at All"
"Me and Sarah Jane"

"No Reply at All" is a song by British band Genesis, from their 1981 album Abacab.


This song, like Phil Collins' solo track "I Missed Again" (recorded at around the same time), makes prominent use of a horn section, arranged by Tom Tom 84 (i.e. Thomas Washington, horn arranger for Earth, Wind & Fire) and played by that band's wind players, credited on the song as "EWF Horns". The song marks a step toward the mainstream pop direction Genesis was taking at the time, yet it still contains elements of their past: complex, melodic bass riffs, and a cross-hand technique on a Prophet-5, similar to the style used for the intro to "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway." When Genesis performed the song live during a concert in Leiden, the Netherlands, on 3 October 1981 the band were booed at.[citation needed]

The song was released as the first single from Abacab in the U.S. and reached the U.S. Top 30 in the fall of 1981.[citation needed]

The song was performed live by Phish as a tribute to Genesis at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 2010 induction ceremony. Phish also performed "Watcher of the Skies" that night.[citation needed] Tony Banks and Phil Collins would later state during the ceremony that the song was not any good live.[citation needed]


When introducing the song on the 1981 Abacab tour, Collins said it is about miscommunication between two people in a relationship.[citation needed]

Music video[edit]

The music video features only the band. Cameras revolve around the band playing their parts in a rehearsal setting. When the horn part is prominent, it cuts to a different shot of the band – wearing hats, sunglasses, and jackets to conceal their identity – playing the trumpet, saxophone and trombone.

Chart performance[edit]

Weekly singles charts[edit]

Chart (1981) Position
U.S. Mainstream Rock [1] 2
Canadian RPM [2] 7
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 29
U.S. Cash Box Top 100 [3] 28

Year-end charts[edit]

Year-end chart (1981) Position
Canadian RPM Top Singles [4] 44

External links[edit]