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Van Der Graaf Generator - Godbluff Live 1975 CD (album) cover


Van Der Graaf Generator


Eclectic Prog

4.14 | 105 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Peter Pan
Prog Reviewer
5 stars "Godbluff Live 1975" is a must-have for Peter Hammill and Van der Graaf Generator fans. More, all progrock followers should own this DVD. Why?

"Godbluff Live 1975" (with the misleading title) shows two phases in the Van der Graaf Generator story as well as in progrock overall.

1971/72 was the peak of progressive rock music. Van der Graaf Generator recorded their groundbreaking "Pawn Hearts", the last album of their second incarnation, from July to September 1971 in Trident Studios, London. The side-long title track "A Plague of Lighthouse-Keepers" was recorded live in a studio performance by Belgian TV on March 21st, 1972 and appears as one part of the "Godbluff Live 1975" DVD.

The TV performance, well produced by an experienced team, shows nothing at all from high tensions between group members and deep exhaustion, which led to the split of Van der Graaf Generator half a year later, in August 1972.

What amazes me most is the compact and dense sound of the band. Lighthouse-Keepers wasn't played often live before because of its length and complexity. To this day I believed studio effects and heavy over-dubbing made it nearly unperformable. But the band is very near to the original sound of the studio production. Hugh Banton playing simultaneously two organs and bass pedals, Peter Hammill with his great voice and playing yet another keyboard (electric piano), David Jackson with two in part simultaneously played saxophones and the dense percussion by Guy Evans nearly make for six or seven musicians!

By 1975 most of the famous progrock bands had split, substantially changed line-up, and/or declined to commercial sounds. But Van der Graaf Generator reformed with a fresh, still avantgardistic sound and published "Godbluff" in October 1975.

The second part of this DVD offers the whole album "Godbluff" in similar quality as "Lighthouse-Keepers". Godbluff was performed on September 27th, 1975, in Charleroi, Belgium, and has more a typical stage atmosphere than the "Lighthouse-Keepers" part.

Video quality of both parts is great, sound quality is well but not excellent.

Peter Pan | 5/5 |


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