Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Van der Graaf Generator - Live at the Paradiso

6/10

I really, really hated this live double album after hearing it the first time, but subsequent listens have improved my opinion of it a bit. Live at the Paradiso is a recording of one of the earliest shows performed by the trio version of VDGG, and it gets off to a pretty bad start with a performance of Lemmings where Hammill's voice is just terrible. Fortunately, the later songs are played much better, and there's considerably more guitar here than on the studio versions of the older songs (to make up for the lack of David Jackson, no doubt).
It's just a shame that there weren't any VDGG live albums recorded during the band's heyday, as all we have are the Maida Vale sessions, the godawful "Vital" with the Van der Graaf lineup and the reunion albums to go on, so there aren't any good documents of what a live show during the 7os with the classic lineup would've been like. I can't really recommend this album except for the more devoted VDGG fan, but it's not horrible and the fact that the songs are rearranged somewhat makes it interesting.

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