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Van Der Graaf Generator - The Least We Can Do Is Wave To Each Other CD (album) cover


Van Der Graaf Generator


Eclectic Prog

4.05 | 940 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

3 stars Most people would probably say that VDGG's truly classic period started with H to He, but I would strongly argue that this album marks the beginning of that period.

I think this one tends to get a bit of bad rap, due to some poorer production. The original CD release is indeed of a very thin sound (i never heard the vinyl), and that can cause you to miss some of the sheer glory contained within.

I have purchased more recently the 2005 re-issue, and I can safely say most of the problems with the sound are solved. Sadly, there is still some slight hissing during the first track, but the improvement is exponential, and really brings out the power in these songs.

This really is a very good album. I think the VDGG sound really glued on this one, and despite what you may hear, this is definitely their first classic. I like every track on here, the diversity they display is awesome. People have noted that VDGG tend to be a darker sounding band, and that is certainly present on this album, but there are also some very delicate, lovely passages.

For example, Darkness begins the album on a very gothic sounding note, all ominous organ and horn work. But immediately there is relief, on track 2: Refugees. This is probably the most lovely song VDGG ever recorded. For those of you who like dark music, but prefer not to be assaulted with it through a whole album, this will probably be your favourite VDGG album.

The trend continues in this way: White Hammer ends in an explosion of chaos and fear, ala King Crimson, and then Whatever Would Robert Have Said follows. It is also a track with some challenging sections. But once again, relief comes in the form of the next track: Out of my book. This one is gentle again, and almost as beautiful as refugees.

The final mini-epic track, After the Flood, is 11 minutes, and includes all the albums strengths within one track! It has dark passages, softer, more delicate passages, and passages that challange the wary listener.

All in all, this album is a VDGG classic (and therefore, a prog classic). Not quite a 5 star album, as they would soon produce, but this is worth no less than 3, by any standard and in fact, probably closer to a 3.5.

Eapo_q42 | 3/5 |


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