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Van Der Graaf Generator - Present CD (album) cover


Van Der Graaf Generator


Eclectic Prog

3.61 | 490 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars This has to be the greatest comeback in rock history in terms of quality. The VdGG greybeards return in their classic lineup, and it's like they were never gone. If anything, Present is even more menacing than Godbluff! Peter Hammill hasn't lost an iota of vitriol, as the lyrics to Every Bloody Emperor and Nutter Alert attest. All the elements are here: honking sax, bellowed vocals, odd rhythms, discord alternating with glorious melody, giant slabs of Gothic organ. Hammill's guitar playing is more prominent than in the past, but also much improved (25 years of practice will do that). I could do without the occasional digital piano sounds, but that's a small quibble. I'd give this a five if it weren't for the mostly unnecessary second disk of jams. These have some good ideas but tend to noodle around in a modern jazz way that isn't my cup of tea. I'd rather have heard a single 70-minute disk with all the songs and the choicest jams. Nonetheless, there's at least an hour of classic VdGG venom on this cathartic album that fimly disspells the notion that over 50s can't rock like they did as youngsters...unfortunately, too many choose to sink into soft rock oblivion, but VdGG have affirmed the faith of their devoted following in a big way.
Heptade | 4/5 |


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