Peter Hammill has always had an abiding interest, it seems, in the blurred boundary between the mystical and the scientific, and between the rational and magical mind; this is certainly evident on the debut Van Der Graaf Generator album, even though Hammill had yet to really begin focusing himself on what it was that was driving him despite the fact that the band's very name referenced a device that resembles a bastard mix of scientific apparatus and shamanic totem.
The Least We Can Do brings those concerns to the fore with ferocity, with time out for a couple of more personal Not At All - Eje Thelin Trio With Bengt Hallberg - 1965 "Refugees" and "Out of Our Book". Hammill 's lyrics, delivered with all the passion and intent he can muster, reference mysticism, numerology, astrology, various religious pantheons, the Malleus Maleficarum leading Hammill to conclude, a bit too hopefully, that magic needs to be gray to be balancedRobert van deGraaf himself in "Whatever Would Robert Have Said?
This being the start of the s, the hopeful notes are drowned out by the tidal wave of fear, sadness, and despair, despite which, the music does tend to be rather uplifting, thanks to the undercurrent of barely restrained majesty VDGG tended to have possibly thanks to Hugh Bantonwho had been rather used to communicating with God via church and cathedral organs; he brought that expertise to a position more normally occupied by determined B3 thumpers engaged in battle with show-horse guitarists.
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Release Date February, Recording Date December 11, - December 14, Cerebral Complex Quirky Uncompromising Theatrical. Track Listing. Peter Hammill. Van der Graaf Generator. White Hammer. Whatever Would Robert Have Said? Out of My Book. After the Flood. Spotify Amazon. Refugees Peter Hammill. White Hammer Peter Hammill. After the Flood Peter Hammill.
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