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Van Der Graaf Generator - Still Life CD (album) cover

STILL LIFE

Van Der Graaf Generator

 

Eclectic Prog

4.29 | 1019 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Wicket
Prog Reviewer
3 stars I'll be the first to admit, I haven't been a Van Der Graaf fan for a significant time for me to know what I'm getting into the moment I add another album onto iTunes.

Maybe I'm missing something here, but after listening to a few tracks off "Pawn Hearts" and "The Least We Can Do...", I began to appreciate VDGG's brand of prog. Once I hit "play" on "Still Life"'s "Pilgrims", I was ready to expect another solid album with different influences of other genres and maybe even an instrumental section.

Then the title track comes on and yes, it's a slow starting track. I figure it's going to slowly rise into a bombastic epic. And then all of a sudden, it's like I'm listening to "Pilgrims, Pt. 2". The second half of the track is the exact same thing as the first. "La Rossa" is an entertaining song with the delicate mellow sax, and then "My Room" is like a "softer" version of "La Rossa", and "Childlike Faith" is pretty much all 4 tracks wrapped up in a 12 and a half minute outro.

Despite being musically good, it just seems like the entire disc lacks creativity, order. While the drums and keys stay on track most of the time, everyone else seems to splinter off and play what they feel like, when they feel like. I would've given more praise to Peter Hammill if he actually tried to sing with rhythm, harmony and in some particular form or pattern instead of spouting out random words in syncopation and disjointing the entire track, but it just aggravates me too much.

Maybe it's how he's always sung on VDGG albums; I haven't noticed on "Pawn Hearts". It just seems like the release of this record really began to show Hammill's takeover of the band and how the progressive majesty of it just sort of faded away.

Or maybe I'm just retarded. Either one seems likely reasonable.

Wicket | 3/5 |

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