Click here for home page

Click here

Contact Us | Customer Information | Privacy Policy | Audio Help

Main Menu
Submit a review
Album Reviews
Book Reviews
DVD Reviews
Sign up for newsletter
Get Your EMail Address
Submit your website

VAN DER GRAAF GENERATOR The Quiet Zone/The Pleasure Dome Charisma/Virgin 2005 VdGG

1977 was an annus horribilis for progressive rock. Punk raged through the streets with a public declaration to ‘Kill All Hippies’, a discomforting prospect for anyone still in a greatcoat. Many rock acts were to fall in the cull.

A notable exception was Van Der Graaf Generator, whose mainman Peter Hammill observes in the notes accompanying this re-mastered, extended reissue of their 20th century swansong: "I was a member of a mad, adrenalin-fuelled aggressive group … we’d always been that way and made a scary noise."

John 'Rotten' Lydon cites these 70s’ pioneers as an influence and the passion and confidence inherent in their work still shines through today.

'The Quiet Zone/The Pleasure Dome' differs from predecessors from the decade. Personnel changes saw exits from Hugh Banton and David Jackson, the return of bassist Nic Potter, the introduction of String Driven thing violinist Graham Smith (both of whom had guested on Hammill’s 6th solo album, ‘Over’, the preceding year), and Hammill on guitar duties.

With 9 original tracks here, this line-up delivered tauter, shorter punches than previous VdGG albums (famed for their sprawling content) with more conventional structures on offer.

This was not to detriment the creativity nor reach of Hammill as a song-writer.

Yet the loss of Banton and Jackson changed the dynamics of the sound, notwithstanding Smith’s gallant efforts to fill. The band changed its name, as if to mark the moment, to Van Der Graaf - the Generator switched off.

Expanded with feisty rock out, ‘Door’, a rare B-side in ‘Ship of Fools’ and a demo version of the album’s, ‘The Wave’, this remains class entertainment from an original act which kept content ‘king’.


Review by Peter Muir

Related>> Album review (The Least We Can Do)

Related>> Album review (H To He)

Related>> Album review (Pawn Hearts)

Related>> Album review (Godbluff)

Related>> Album review (Still Life)

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

get ready to rock is a division of hotdigitsnewmedia group

Featured Artists
Artist Archive
Featured Labels
Label Archive
Do you want to appear here?

Why should I buy this CD?

Revolutionary rock that scared Johnny 'Rotten'!

Burn baby burn

1. Lizard Play
4. Last Frame
6. Cat's Eye/Yellow Fever (Running)
7. The Sphinx in the Face