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Peter Hammill - In A Foreign Town CD (album) cover

IN A FOREIGN TOWN

Peter Hammill

 

Eclectic Prog

2.84 | 94 ratings

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mashnova2000
4 stars OK, this is one of the pH albums I hardly re-visit and perhaps deserves a star less. Very much a child of its time and nowhere as timeless as Peter Gabriel albums of the era it sill has a few noteworthy tracks. Lyrically Hammill is contemplating the acutalities of Our World at the time and at this he's philosophically at his best (hear 'Still Life', 'pH7'). What lets the whole thing down is the flat production and limited musicality. Hammill obviously discovered the wonderful world of computers and the sound just sounds like that: here I am with a string of great songs and I can do it by myself. Not quite! The song-writing deserves no less than all of 5 stars, the music just about two. See (listen): 'Sci-Finance' - heard previously as a punk/prog out-pouring on VdG's rancious 'Still Life' live album - becomes a popsong with message lost. 'This Book' should have earned the songwriter a place in the charts, but hell, this is Peter Hammill, the man who doesn't even get reviews on this site. 'Time to burn' is an eternal classic if only performed with a proper band (and I perhaps grew suspicious of it after hearing the instrumental version of the track on an aeroplane as background music on off-boarding), 'Auto' could be a danceclub-classic, if the DJs would listen toi anything but Kraftwerk, 'The Play's the Thing' refers to his greatest idol (Shakes...I guess) and is a truelly beautiful ballad. I've change my mind now, as I'm re- visiting the album right now, no, three stars minus one is not enough. I can adjust. The 'Foreign town' in the title is most possibly referring to a foreign world we live in, and hey, can't we just relate to this right now.
| 4/5 |

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