Forum Home Forum Home > Progressive Music Lounges > Prog Polls
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - Which 5 Peter Hammill albums are 'essential'
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Which 5 Peter Hammill albums are 'essential'

 Post Reply Post Reply Page  <12
Poll Question: Pick your FIVE best PH albums of the vinyl age
Poll Choice Votes Poll Statistics
10 [5.68%]
22 [12.50%]
34 [19.32%]
27 [15.34%]
24 [13.64%]
23 [13.07%]
4 [2.27%]
7 [3.98%]
10 [5.68%]
5 [2.84%]
5 [2.84%]
4 [2.27%]
1 [0.57%]
You can not vote in this poll

Author
Message
npjnpj View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member


Joined: December 05 2007
Location: Germany
Status: Offline
Points: 1624
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote npjnpj Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 17 2012 at 05:44
I have this way of looking at it:

I find that the (classic) VdGG studio albums and the first 6 Hammill solo albums are one body of work, preferably heard in order,  which would then be:

Aerosol Grey Machine
The Least we can Do is Wave to Each Other
H to He Who Am the Only One
Foolís Mate
Pawn Hearts
Over
Chameleon in the Shadow of the Night
The Silent Corner and the Empty Stage
In Camera
Nadirís Big Chance
Godbluff
Still Life
World Record
The Quiet Zone - The Pleasure Dome

So for me personally the first actual PH solo album is The Future Now.

I can't vote on this because each one of those PH albums above is essencial.

And although I'm a Graaf and Hammill fan, I don't think any of the PH albums after and including the Future Now are really essential. I always found them to be a weak echo of the VdGG that went before and never got anywhere near what they achieved as a unit. Perhaps not the general point of PH's output, but it's what I was looking for.


Edited by npjnpj - January 17 2012 at 05:48
I like the music of any era, regardless of when it was made.
Back to Top
bucka001 View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: November 16 2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 616
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bucka001 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 17 2012 at 07:02
Originally posted by npjnpj npjnpj wrote:

I have this way of looking at it:

I find that the (classic) VdGG studio albums and the first 6 Hammill solo albums are one body of work, preferably heard in order,  which would then be:

Aerosol Grey Machine
The Least we can Do is Wave to Each Other
H to He Who Am the Only One
Foolís Mate
Pawn Hearts
Over
Chameleon in the Shadow of the Night
The Silent Corner and the Empty Stage
In Camera
Nadirís Big Chance
Godbluff
Still Life
World Record
The Quiet Zone - The Pleasure Dome

 
Over would actually come after World Record (Chameleon comes after Pawn Hearts).
 
While I disagree with your assessment about any PH albums not being essential after and including The Future Now (I personally feel that the coupling of Future Now / pH7 is as worthwhile as anything before... they're all 'the Charisma years'), I can see where you're coming from with the 'one body of work' outlook for PH's solo albums during the VdGG era. For me, though, it's the 70's in general where Hammill was beyond brilliant. And even the early 80's w/A Black Box, Sitting Targets, and the K-Group albums... all extremely worthwhile. What a run! From the late 60's to the mid-80's -- every album a singular artistic success. Very few artists can boast such a run, especially given that PH released (incl. VdGG) around 22 or 23 albums in that period.
jc
Back to Top
npjnpj View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member


Joined: December 05 2007
Location: Germany
Status: Offline
Points: 1624
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote npjnpj Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 17 2012 at 07:52
Woops, the order was screwed up, sorry.

I agree with your assessment of the brilliant run of albums, but at the same time I still don't find them essential. The problem here might be that we differ on the word 'essential'  (to what or whom), lacking a general definition of the term.

If my CD collection got destroyed or stolen, I'd replace the albums from my list immediately, but I don't think I'd bother replacing the other PH albums, at least not for quite a while.

I think that what bothers me most about them is that I have to be in the right mood to be able to listen to them, whereas I can always play and enjoy a VdGG album. Most of his later output I see as being too whiney, and even the run of good late 70s and early 80s output suffers from bad production and (worse) inept instrumentation and playing. Not all of it, but a lot.

Whiney is OK in small doses, but not over several albums and over several years, even if it does go under the guise of deep philosophical thought (This applies mainly to his guitar only or keyboard only albums). Privately the guy is supposed to be quite cheerful, but then again I suppose he'd have to be or he'd have committed suicide a long time ago.

VdGG material can be quite dismal at times, indeed a lot of times and herein lies a lot of its appeal, but it also all contains an abundance of contrast which his solo output would largely lack. Additionally, his decision to release a lot of albums without any  rhythm section at all is a big mistake in my eyes.

I admire him for sticking to his guns for such a long time though, but the decision to reform VdGG was the best thing he could possibly do, for himself and for us.


Edited by npjnpj - January 17 2012 at 07:53
I like the music of any era, regardless of when it was made.
Back to Top
friso View Drop Down
Prog Reviewer
Prog Reviewer
Avatar

Joined: October 24 2007
Location: Netherlands
Status: Offline
Points: 1848
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote friso Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 17 2012 at 08:39
I do agree that the musicianship on a lot of Peter Hammill's albums is lacking a professional attitude. The rhythms are often unstable, the guitars by Hammill himself often sound a bit out of pitch and the production of some albums isn't always too pleasant. It would have been nice if Peter Hammill would have had a network of professional musicians to help him record his songs. Still the pure energy and 'realness' of Hammill his style keeps impressing me (over time).
Back to Top
bucka001 View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: November 16 2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 616
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bucka001 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 17 2012 at 10:08
Originally posted by npjnpj npjnpj wrote:

Woops, the order was screwed up, sorry.

I agree with your assessment of the brilliant run of albums, but at the same time I still don't find them essential. The problem here might be that we differ on the word 'essential'  (to what or whom), lacking a general definition of the term.

If my CD collection got destroyed or stolen, I'd replace the albums from my list immediately, but I don't think I'd bother replacing the other PH albums, at least not for quite a while.

I think that what bothers me most about them is that I have to be in the right mood to be able to listen to them, whereas I can always play and enjoy a VdGG album. Most of his later output I see as being too whiney, and even the run of good late 70s and early 80s output suffers from bad production and (worse) inept instrumentation and playing. Not all of it, but a lot.

Whiney is OK in small doses, but not over several albums and over several years, even if it does go under the guise of deep philosophical thought (This applies mainly to his guitar only or keyboard only albums). Privately the guy is supposed to be quite cheerful, but then again I suppose he'd have to be or he'd have committed suicide a long time ago.

VdGG material can be quite dismal at times, indeed a lot of times and herein lies a lot of its appeal, but it also all contains an abundance of contrast which his solo output would largely lack. Additionally, his decision to release a lot of albums without any  rhythm section at all is a big mistake in my eyes.

I admire him for sticking to his guns for such a long time though, but the decision to reform VdGG was the best thing he could possibly do, for himself and for us.
 
All fair enough! VdGG had better production values (even when they produced themselves in the mid-latter part of the 70's). Hammill's later solo (i.e. late 70's, early 80's) albums would have sounded more 'accomplished' if he didn't play the drums or guitars himself. Yet, it's the very organic nature of those albums that I find appealing. One critic of the time commented that it's as if an artist entered an attic full of junk and, through his creativity, put it all together and came up with something unique and special. So, with that sort of take on it, I can get past the clunkiness of execution. And anyway, from Enter K ('82) through The Margin ('85) he had the K Group going strong and they were more than accomplished musicians, obviously. But I hear what you're saying.
jc
Back to Top
bucka001 View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: November 16 2005
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 616
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bucka001 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 17 2012 at 10:11
Originally posted by friso friso wrote:

I do agree that the musicianship on a lot of Peter Hammill's albums is lacking a professional attitude. The rhythms are often unstable, the guitars by Hammill himself often sound a bit out of pitch and the production of some albums isn't always too pleasant. It would have been nice if Peter Hammill would have had a network of professional musicians to help him record his songs. Still the pure energy and 'realness' of Hammill his style keeps impressing me (over time).
 
Again, I hear you and he probably would have been more 'successful' if there was better musicianship on some of those albums. But, he did put together the K Group (w/great musicianship) and I don't think those albums were any more successful (sales-wise) than any previous efforts. Of course, with Hammill, I'm sure none of us base our love/disappointment of his work on sales!
jc
Back to Top
friso View Drop Down
Prog Reviewer
Prog Reviewer
Avatar

Joined: October 24 2007
Location: Netherlands
Status: Offline
Points: 1848
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote friso Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 18 2012 at 05:05
Originally posted by bucka001 bucka001 wrote:

Originally posted by friso friso wrote:

I do agree that the musicianship on a lot of Peter Hammill's albums is lacking a professional attitude. The rhythms are often unstable, the guitars by Hammill himself often sound a bit out of pitch and the production of some albums isn't always too pleasant. It would have been nice if Peter Hammill would have had a network of professional musicians to help him record his songs. Still the pure energy and 'realness' of Hammill his style keeps impressing me (over time).


Again, I hear you and he probably would have been more 'successful' if there was better musicianship on some of those albums. But, he did put together the K Group (w/great musicianship) and I don't think those albums were any more successful (sales-wise) than any previous efforts. Of course, with Hammill, I'm sure none of us base our love/disappointment of his work on sales!


Yeah we tend to look at artistic success. Fully agreed upon.
Back to Top
AtomicCrimsonRush View Drop Down
Special Collaborator
Special Collaborator
Avatar
Symphonic Team

Joined: July 02 2008
Location: Australia
Status: Offline
Points: 13964
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AtomicCrimsonRush Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 18 2012 at 05:08
Over
The Silent Corner and the Empty Stage
Fools Mate
Nadir's Big Chance
In Camera

in no p/o


Edited by AtomicCrimsonRush - January 18 2012 at 05:08
Back to Top
ProgressToChange View Drop Down
Forum Groupie
Forum Groupie
Avatar

Joined: April 20 2012
Status: Offline
Points: 70
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ProgressToChange Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 25 2012 at 06:42
A little late but......

Chameleon
In camera
Silent corner
Room temperature (he does some amazingly passionate live versions here)

The 5th one is difficult but I have to go with 'This'.

Back to Top
JeanFrame View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: December 01 2010
Location: London, England
Status: Offline
Points: 193
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JeanFrame Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 25 2012 at 10:00
Silent corner
Back to Top
Equality 7-2521 View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: August 11 2005
Location: Philly
Status: Offline
Points: 15429
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Equality 7-2521 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 25 2012 at 11:33
The five from Chameleon to Over all must be heard.
"One had to be a Newton to notice that the moon is falling, when everyone sees that it doesn't fall. "
Back to Top
moshkito View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: January 04 2007
Location: Grok City
Status: Offline
Points: 5934
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 26 2012 at 14:44
Originally posted by friso friso wrote:

Pick your five favorite Peter Hammill solo albums from the vinyl age. Feel free to add some words of advice, I already own 'In Camara', 'Over' and 'A Black Box' (of which I only like side 1).
 
I'm not sure that the choices made here are not the best ones ... Silent Corner is probably the best and most valuable of these for me, although as time goes by, I am liking Godbluff and Still Life a lot more ... where I thought that Silent Corner and Empty Space was personal, it is more angry than personal, and both Godbluff and Still Life are much more personal and interesting for me.
 
Out of Water has one of my favorite pieces by Peter ... "A Way Out". It's so simple ... that no one gets it! What a concept, hey?
 
But I can tell you that the anger in Bernina will always be there ... and I want to blow up some of these vampire bs movies with it!


Edited by moshkito - April 26 2012 at 14:50
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



www.pedrosena.com
Back to Top
MFP View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member


Joined: March 31 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 7293
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MFP Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 26 2012 at 16:46
Originally posted by moshkito moshkito wrote:

Out of Water has one of my favorite pieces by Peter ... "A Way Out". It's so simple ... that no one gets it! What a concept, hey?


One of my favourites too.


Check out this version:



Back to Top
harpagroom View Drop Down
Forum Newbie
Forum Newbie
Avatar

Joined: May 24 2011
Status: Offline
Points: 8
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote harpagroom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 21 2012 at 08:22
I love the unexpectedness, genuinity, experimentalism of some of PH's albums, so I vote:

In Camera,

The Margin+,

Patience,

The Appointed Hour &

In A Foreign Town (the latter undeservedly underestimated by many, even Peter himself, if I understand well one of his newsletters at Sofasound!!)




Back to Top
snowsnow View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: March 09 2011
Location: Belper, England
Status: Offline
Points: 364
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote snowsnow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2012 at 02:13
In camera (by some distance)
A black box
Over
Nadir's big chance
Sitting targets
Back to Top
refugee View Drop Down
Forum Senior Member
Forum Senior Member
Avatar
VIP Member

Joined: November 20 2006
Location: Greece
Status: Offline
Points: 7021
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote refugee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2012 at 06:24
Theyíre all good. Voted for:

Chameleon
Silent Corner
In Camera
A Black Box
Patience

I donít know how I can convince you that the second half of A Black Box is a masterpiece. I will never forget when PH performed Flight single-handedly at a concert in Oslo in the 80s.
He say nothing is quite what it seems;
I say nothing is nothing
(Peter Hammill)
Back to Top
harpagroom View Drop Down
Forum Newbie
Forum Newbie
Avatar

Joined: May 24 2011
Status: Offline
Points: 8
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote harpagroom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 29 2012 at 08:48
Come on, I am dark green with envy. Flight is one of his best. However, I would also be flying on a real wing if I, say, saw the VdGG of Vital Live (naturally with Jackson!) play Flight on a stage. I think this is the strength and calibre of the best PH / VdGG big, complex prog pieces (like eg. Still Life).
Back to Top
sleeper View Drop Down
Prog Reviewer
Prog Reviewer
Avatar

Joined: October 09 2005
Location: Entropia
Status: Offline
Points: 15603
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sleeper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 29 2012 at 10:33
I only have two, Silent Corner and the Empty Stage and Chameleon in the Shadow of the Night, I love both si I voted for them regardless as they are both well worth listening too. 
Spending more than I should on Prog since 2005

Back to Top
Pinkhead View Drop Down
Forum Groupie
Forum Groupie
Avatar

Joined: December 12 2011
Location: Buenos Aires
Status: Offline
Points: 43
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pinkhead Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 29 2012 at 21:59
Over
The Silent Corner and the Empty Stage
PH7
Fool's Mate
In Camera
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply Page  <12
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 11.01
Copyright ©2001-2014 Web Wiz Ltd.

This page was generated in 0.093 seconds.