Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Pop, Rock, Classic Rock
2009 release from the Van der Graf Generator leader, his 29th solo album overall. These new recordings mark a return to solo territory, but in the knowledge that Van der Graf is still an ongoing entity. Peter therefore dec... more »
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2009 release from the Van der Graf Generator leader, his 29th solo album overall. These new recordings mark a return to solo territory, but in the knowledge that Van der Graf is still an ongoing entity. Peter therefore decided to make this set of recordings a genuinely one-man effort, playing and singing every note on the disc. As might be expected of an artist now more than 40 years into his career, these are adult songs, addressing grown-up themes. This is a worthy, fascinating and mature addition to Peter's body of work, which remains uneasy listening. It doesn't look as if he will be disappearing just yet.
His best work in many years!
Andreas C G | Huntington Beach, CA United States | 08/04/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is his best album since the early 80's. It's been in heavy rotation for me since I bought it this summer. Sadly it has received little attention. Please pass the word on!
At the begining of the decade Peter Hammill came out of a relative creative slump, and has been releasing consistently intriguing music since. "Thin Air", may be his best since then, and perhaps his best since his 70's - mid 80's peak.
An early review of this album made a comparison to 1980's A Black Box, and since then I have noticed other reviewers latch on to that. It's not totally unfounded. Before "Singularity", he re-mastered the late 70's / early 80's albums, which featured an experimental / noise edge in some of the material, and that he had been inspired to use some avant-garde elements on the two most recent albums, but I would not go too much further in the comparison. The single close parallel is "Ghosts of Planes", which evokes "Fogwalking" on "A Black Box".
The album is more cohesive musically, as well as lyrically, than Singularity. All the songs are rather slow paced & understated in their production. There are no rockers. What traces of melodies there are also very tenuous, and seem on the verge of vanishing as well.
As the tile suggests, there is a theme of disappearance and impermanence throughout the album. The lyrics of the opening song, "The Mercy" make reference to famous last words of people who subsequently disappeared. All of the songs in some way deal with loss, imminent loss, time slipping away (an old Hammill standby), and other forms of vanisning. abd of a lack of control. Thematically it's perhaps closer to Chameleon in the Shadow of the Night. It should be pointed out that, although this description might sound rather depressing, the effect of this music is anything but.
Even in his 20's Peter Hammill's work was thought-provoking and insightful. In an interview recently he described himself as a "stumbler in dark" on many questions, particularly spiritual ones. Hammill's lyrics will rarely give you a pat answer - the are more likely to leave you asking new questions. This new material reflects the concerns of the same seeker discussing his concerns at a mature stage in life.
Do check this one out, and give it a couple of listenings to sink in."
I have Lost Count
Victor F. Tripaldi | Planet Earth | 06/08/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Another year, another solo effort by beloved Artist Peter Hammill. As we grow old together gone are the surprises and after shock of such bold and shocking contemporary statement new material albums such as 1978s "The Future Now" but after seeing the reformed VDGG several times since 2005 and actually will see again in 18 days in NYC I can understand where Mr. Hammill is coming from on this lp. He plays every instrument himself, nice work, good sounds coming from all instruments. New LP BY Peter Hammill June 8 2009
downloaded no less."
Another mind bending voyage from the Master
Ignaciocue | Mexico | 07/26/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"another mind bending voyage from the Master, Just a couple of regular tunes, the rest is magnificent in ambient and depth."