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Phil Collins' "Face Value" Album: Greatest Hits and Production

Me with the album Face Value
Me with the album Face Value

This article presents an overview of the album "Face Value" by singer, songwriter and drummer Phil Collins. We'll explore the album's greatest hits and discuss the production and context behind this musical masterpiece.

Released on February 13, 1981, the album "Face Value" marked the solo debut of Phil Collins following his success as a member of the band Genesis. The album, produced by Collins and Hugh Padgham, achieved commercial success, reaching #1 in the UK charts and #7 on the US Billboard 200.

Face Value" features a collection of emotionally charged songs inspired by Collins' personal life, including his divorce. Let's explore the greatest hits from this album and dive into the production that made it a masterpiece in the music business.

Major Hits

One of the biggest highlights from the "Face Value" album is the iconic single "In the Air Tonight", which reached #2 in the UK charts. This song is notable for its powerful drum beat and distinctive use of the "gated reverb" effect. "In the Air Tonight" is often hailed as one of the best heartbreak songs of all time.

Another notable hit from the album is "I Missed Again," a catchy track that showcases Collins' vocal prowess and his ability to craft hits. The song features a fusion of musical styles, combining elements of pop, rock, and R&B.

In addition to these tracks, "Face Value" also includes other notable compositions such as "Behind the Lines" and "If Leaving Me Is Easy". The album itself is a diverse musical journey spanning a variety of genres including pop rock, R&B and art rock.

Album Production

The production of "Face Value" demonstrates the artistic vision of Phil Collins and his collaboration with Hugh Padgham. The album features a range of typical '80s sounds, such as fretless bass, rich synths and gated drums. However, the production also reveals subtlety and sonic layers, thanks in part to Collins' collaboration with Brian Eno.

The recordings took place at the Town House, in London, and at the Village Recorder, in Los Angeles. Collins incorporated an R&B horn section, known as the Phenix Horns, and experimented with drum programming. These musical choices contributed to the album's distinctive and immersive sound.

Face Value" received critical acclaim due to its slick production and the way Collins was able to capture personal emotions and convey them through his music. The album remains one of Collins' most honest and endearing works, despite its later success and hit-filled career.


Phil Collins' "Face Value" album is a milestone in the artist's career and a musical treasure that transcends generations. With hits like "In the Air Tonight" and "I Missed Again", the album captured the hearts of fans and received critical acclaim. The careful production, variety of musical styles and emotional depth make "Face Value" an '80s masterpiece.

The album's enduring legacy and influence on popular music continues to echo to this day. The success of "Face Value" paved the way for Phil Collins' extraordinary solo career and solidified his position as one of the music scene's most talented and respected artists.


[1] Wikipedia. "Face Value (album) - Wikipedia". [Online]. Available from:

[2] AllMusic. "Phil Collins - Face Value Album Reviews, Songs & More | AllMusic". [Online]. Available at:

[3] Discogs. "Phil Collins - Face Value | Releases | Discogs". [Online]. Available at: -Value.

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