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Van Der Graaf Generator - World Record CD (album) cover

WORLD RECORD

Van Der Graaf Generator

 

Eclectic Prog

3.83 | 777 ratings

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Jordi Planas
5 stars Itīs funny that a lot of prog-rock fans consider 1970-1974 the best years of this genre. But, in fact, when punk was about to come, some prog masterworks were being cooked: "Wind & Wuthering" (Genesis), "Going for the One" (Yes), "The Geese & the Ghost" (Anthony Phillips) or "World Record" (VDGG). All of them really different. All of them really great.

Peter Hammill was a passionate singer. In fact, was once considered the best "non-singer", and some of his vocals could be really heavy or punk ("Disengage", from the "Exposure" album by Robert Fripp, is the best proof). So itīs funny that VDGG disbanded when punk came...

In "World Record" all the best VDGG ingredients are present (sometimes in the same song!): jazz, epic, rage, prog, chaos, hope, reggae (yes!), sadness, violence, rock and beauty. And, as musicians, Banton, Jackson and Evans are superb, no only as players, but also as "generators" of sounds, ideas and textures. Some fragments are really heavy, and the main instrument is not the electric guitar! In fact, Hammill has acknowledged several times that he was not a proficient guitar player (thatīs why he invited Robert Fripp a couple of times). But thatīs what made VDGGīs music so great! His role was more the singer- songwriter (and some of his lyrics are amongst the best in rock), although his "punkish" guitar suits really well into the music.

To start with VDGG is better to listen first to "Still Life" or "Pawn Hearts", but "World Record" goes one step beyond. And ends with the supernatural "Wondering", one true gem, and personally one of my top-25 songs ever.

Jordi Planas | 5/5 |

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