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Van Der Graaf Generator - World Record CD (album) cover


Van Der Graaf Generator


Eclectic Prog

3.83 | 724 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars What happened?

That's what I'd like to know. For all the detractors out there against VDGG, this is the one album I would point to and say, rip this one all you want. Hammill's guitar overdrive and style are questionable at best and the sax and organ have almost no connection and intriguing interplay as found on previous albums.

When She comes somewhat reminds me of Gentle Giant and a tune I might hear on Acquiring the Taste. Some of the organ choices are nice hear and it's already clearly a step down from Still Life or Godbluff, not too bad. Unfortunately, it would get worse.

The awful guitar tone comes into place on A Place to Survive, which I suppose attempts to be exotic and chaotic like some of King Crimson's material, but only serves to be a big mess. Hammill should leave the guitar playing to someone else, or at least find a better tone.

Masks is more guitar I can't stand, an error that might easily be fixed by having the traditional VDGG sax used instead, but I suppose the band wanted to branch out, however this was a branch that was doomed to fall off.

The Songwriters Guild is a dense piece of music that is too artsy. Some parts fit in well, and it has a reggae quality to most of the middle section through to the end, although this could have easily been cut in half and we would have a much more cohesive and enjoyable song. It's fairly clear here that Hammill is really unsure of himself with the guitar.

By the time I get to Wondering, I'm wondering why I have this album. I love VDGG, but this just doesn't do it. The track itself is actually fairly majestic, and might fit well as the ending to a fantasy movie. It's really a fantasy if I'm to put this album alongside the ranks of other classic VDGG works.

OpethGuitarist | 2/5 |


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