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Peter Hammill - The Future Now CD (album) cover

THE FUTURE NOW

Peter Hammill

 

Eclectic Prog

3.44 | 136 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

slipperman
Prog Reviewer
3 stars 'The Future Now' is a real mixed-bag, coming at a time when Peter Hammill was freshly free of Van Der Graff Generator for, literally, decades to come.

The album starts with some discomfort, tuneless talk-singing leading "Pushing Thirty", "The Second Hand" and "Trappings" (the first two sounding like hangovers from 'Nadir's Big Chance'). But then things get a bit odd. "The Mousetrap (Caught In)" is built on an emotional, quiet, introspective vocal line, but the keyboard sounds zooming in and around it are rather unsettling and counter the gorgeous vocals well. This segues into the frantic, paranoid and cynical "Energy Vampires", with some nails- on-chalkboard violin from Graham Smith under an edgy, hyper bass line.

The rest of the album volleys between stark, emotionally heavy balladeering ("If I Could", "Still In The Dark"), engaging openness and honesty ("The Future Now", "Palinurus (Castaway)") and utterly strange experimental songs ("A Motor-bike In Afrika", "Mediaeval", "The Cut"). Clearly an album with plenty of depth, but not all the songs impress. I find the more experimental tracks the most interesting and compelling. Certainly one for all Hammill fans, there's enough good stuff to warrant a purchase, but I would never suggest the curious Hammill newcomer start here. It's just too erratic, and only the most initiated P.H. fans will get it right away.

slipperman | 3/5 |

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