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Van Der Graaf Generator - H To He, Who Am The Only One CD (album) cover


Van Der Graaf Generator


Eclectic Prog

4.31 | 1486 ratings

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3 stars ''The least we can do is to wave to each other'' made it up to the top 50 of the UK charts with the Melody Maker magazine stating that ''if all bands sounded like this, the British scene would be ten times as great''.However Potter was not exactly enthusiastic with the more experimental path the band was taking.After playing bass in three tracks of the new album, he decided to leave (later to perform with Van der Graaf and the offshoot Long Hello group) after a last show in August 70 at the Plumpton Festival.The remaining members audiotioned one Dave Anderson for about a week, but as things did not turn out well musicwise, keyboardist Hugh Banton decided to play the rest of the bass lines and perform them on bass pedals on stage.The third work ''H to He, who am the only one'' was recorded as a result sporadically throughout 1970 at the Trident Studios, featuring also Robert Fripp in one track.The album's main themes were inspired by modern physics, this one was released on Charisma at the fall of 1970.

Van der Graaf Generator would take the step to an upper level with this work, which marks them undoubtfully as one of the pioneers of the emerging British Prog scene.The intense poetry of the previous work is limited, leaving its place to a more melodramatic atmosphere full of complex ideas, influences from Classical, Jazz and Psychedelic Rock and a labyrinth of fine twists and abnormal song structures, with the exception of the more laid-back ''House with no door''.5 quite long and intricate pieces with powerful sax scratches and deep Hammond organ, a great rhythm section and even some discreet flute work.Guitar work seems now more balanced between acoustic and electric lines as a result of a more complex and progressive attitude.The tracks' length provided the band with plenty of room for impressive breaks, instrumental workouts and of course expressive, lyrical moments with Hammill's dramatic voice in evidence.Thus, the atmosphere is always changing between smooth, Psych-influenced parts, frenetic themes with sax and organ in evidence and strong, jazzy influences and delicate, somewhat orchestral moves with a more melodic aspect.The interplays are mostly great and very dense, only negative thing seems that sometimes the music sounds extremely complex and often switches tempos and climates too early.But the innovative approach of the band would have been a true shock back in 1970.

Rather different from the previous album.Richer in sounds and instrumental interactions, this third effory by Van der Graaf Generator sees them entering their most mature period, playing 100% progressive, dark-sounding and groundbreaking music, that inspired so many groups over the years.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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