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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 | 1482 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

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Prog Metal Team
4 stars My Van Der Graaf Generator story began with Pawn Hearts and although that album has grown on me over the years I never considered it to be a masterpiece. This matter only complicated things because in my frustration with my first experience I swiftly moved on to the band's second period (1975-78) without giving the early material the proper introduction that it deserved.

Luckily I revived my curiosity about a year ago and finally acquired H to He, Who Am the Only One. Once I discovered this album it actuality put the material on Pawn Hearts in a whole different light for me. Hopefully my experience will help some of you brave Van Der Graaf Generator explorers on your quest!

So what exactly did this album have that made me change my opinion about the band's early material? I'll give you my first hint, it wasn't Killer because if anything this track sounds almost as amateurish as the band's previous material but it's saved by the strong lyrical context. House With No Door is a whole different story. Subtle, delicate and an overall pleasant experience all around. Still, most fans might argue that The Least We Can Do Is Wave To Each Other had an equally great little ballad called Refugees and they would be...right! So let's move on.

Trust me when I say that this album has a few more aces up its sleeve and The Emperor In His War-Room fits that metaphor quite well. There is just nothing I could say that will do justice to this magnificent piece of progressive rock music. To this day I still haven't heard another Van Der Graaf Generator composition that could even try to challenge the highest regards I have for this work. Let's just say that it's an epic tale that involves the issues of power, injustice and the aftermath. In other words it everything that you want to hear when Peter Hammill's marvelous lyrics are combined with an equally great instrumental composition.

Lost has the most ridiculous intro sections that I've ever heard and it does in fact offset the rest of the performance for me. Fortunately the ending section makes up for that miss in a glorious fashion and things get back on track with the somewhat lengthy Pioneers Over C. which is a define improvement of the ideas that were explored on After The Flood.

H to He, Who Am the Only One is my favorite album from the bands early years and I definitely recommend to start the journey here!

***** star songs: House With No Door (6:03) The Emperor In His War-Room (9:04)

**** star songs: Killer (8:07) Lost (11:13) Pioneers Over C. (12:05)

Rune2000 | 4/5 |


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