Phil Collins Looks Back on the ‘In the Air Tonight’ Drum Break: ‘Nobody Had Ever Heard Anything Like That’
By Jeff Giles February 12, 2016 10:42 AM
That album’s landmark single, “In the Air Tonight,” contains one of rock’s most famous drum breaks — a moment Collins discussed with Digital Trends.
“When we had Eric Clapton and some of his guys come up to the studio, we played ‘In the Air Tonight’ for them. When the drums came in, everybody said, ‘F—ING HELL! What the f— is that?’ Nobody had ever heard anything like that. Frankly, drums were never that loud. But it was my album, and it worked,” argued Collins. “We were playing with psychological things. The audience is there going along with you, and then suddenly you knock them on the head with this thing: Bvoom-bvoom!”
I believe this song was the first song to be used in an advertisement while it was still on its first run as a hit. So if you turned the radio on and heard it you didn’t know if you were going to get the song or the beer commercial.