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Van Der Graaf Generator - Godbluff CD (album) cover


Van Der Graaf Generator


Eclectic Prog

4.48 | 1999 ratings

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5 stars After a 3-year hiatus, VDGG returned to the scene and what a return it was! The previous album "Pawn Hearts" was a studio-oriented ambitious work, which despite its obvious qualities I often considered a bit impenetrable. Although "Godbluff" is hardly more pleasant or cheerful to listen (indeed it is one of the darkest and gloomiest records I ever heard!), it is nevertheless more consistent piece of art. No wonder they extensively played "Godbluff" material on tours before setting in a studio to record the work. The performance of these 4 tracks is perfect in every sense, and you can feel a "guiding hand" connecting all of these into one coherent whole, although it is far from by that time already worn-out template of "concept albums".

If I am correct, this is the first VDGG album featuring Hammill on electric guitar, besides his usual piano/electric piano instrumental contribution (here it is mainly Hohner Pianet but you can also hear many moments sounding like there is a Clavinet too). He was obviously still very shy playing it (in contrast to acoustic guitar) since it can be hardly detected on few moments on the B side of the record. Still, it is nice to see him holding a Strat on the back cover photo. Banton-Evans-Jackson trio is in full throttle providing a dense aural landscape filled with brutal heavy rock attacks, jazzy improvisation and extremely unconventional (even for "progressive rock") arrangements and melodies.

Personally, I owned this album since 25 years ago and despite being a young fan of VDGG I could not always fully enjoyed it. It grew slowly over time with many listens and now I can safely declare it one of top 20 if not even top 10 of the best progressive rock albums of all time! So, in case you are a newcomer to "Godbluff", please keep this in mind.


Seyo | 5/5 |


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