No Reply at All

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"No Reply at All"
No Reply At All Single.jpg
Single by Genesis
from the album Abacab
B-side"Naminanu / Dodo"
Released9 September 1981
Format7" / 12"
GenrePop rock
Length4:40 (LP version)
4:00 (US promo single edit)
LabelCharisma/Virgin (UK)
Atlantic (US)
Songwriter(s)Tony Banks, Phil Collins, Mike Rutherford
Genesis singles chronology
"No Reply at All"
"Keep It Dark"

"No Reply at All" is a song by British band Genesis, released as the second single 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."

The song was critically unsuccessful. When Genesis performed the song live during a concert in Leiden, the Netherlands, on 3 October 1981, the band was booed.[citation needed] The song's lack of popularity lead to it being excluded from the Platinum Collection and the setlist for their 2007 tour.

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] "No Reply at All" spent 18 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, longer than most of their hits which reached the Top 10, including "Invisible Touch", which spent only 17 weeks on the chart. It was the second single in the U.K.

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.


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]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Retrieved 23 October 2016.
  2. ^ "Genesis - Abacab". AllMusic. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 5 January 2015. Retrieved 2015-01-05.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Retrieved 23 October 2016.