“There was an aspect of claustrophobia”: Steve Hackett explains why he made “the right decision” to leave Genesis 

“Genesis was becoming a little bit too much of a closed shop and it was affecting my ability to sleep.”

Steve Hackett on stage, pictured smiling as he plays guitar

Image: Steve Jennings / Getty

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Steve Hackett feels he made “the right decision” to leave Genesis when he did.

Hackett served as lead guitarist for the band from 1971 until 1977, and has stated that at the time, he didn’t want to let other creative ideas “fester”.

Hackett released his first solo album, Voyage Of The Acolyte in 1975 while he still remained a member of the band. Following his departure, he went on to release a range of further solo records such as Please Don’t Touch (1978), Spectral Mornings (1979), Defector (1980) and more. He also helped to form the supergroup GTR.

Speaking to Classic Rock (via NME), Hackett explains why he has no regrets about parting ways with Genesis back in ‘77: “There was an aspect of claustrophobia that invaded my time with Genesis,” he says.

“I had to work outside the band. I think if you’re feeling creative and you’ve got that album or that book or that film inside you, you don’t want to let it fester. You’ve got to get it out there.”

He continues, “Genesis was becoming a little bit too much of a closed shop and it was affecting my ability to sleep. I agonised over leaving the band for a good two years and then I thought, ‘No, I’ve got to make a leap of faith at this point in time.’ And there’s no doubt that I made the right decision.”

Last year, Hackett said that if he had stayed in Genesis, he would not have taken their music in the pop direction he feels the band took in the 1980s.

Hackett released his latest album, The Circus And The Nightwhale back in February.

He is due to commence touring this July. For tickets, head to his official website.

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