Release Date: Dec 1, 2017
Record label: Fie!
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
When Barry Manilow croons the line 'I write the songs that make the whole world sing' ,we doubt very much whether he has a picture of Peter Hammill in the back of his mind. The Van der Graaf Generator mainman is not what one would call a populist figure in the world of music. His songs are bleak, morbid and mesmerising - much to the delight of hardcore fans who like nothing better than having their tender souls jolted to the core.
Whereas last year's Do Not Disturb contained a generous helping of Van Der Graaf Generator's cacophonous complexity, leader Peter Hammill's 36th solo album acts as an emollient balm, albeit one with jagged stones lurking deep within. With prog being so generously accepted these days, there has never been a better time to be an admirer of Hammill; as he enters his third act, all his experiments with in-era technology are long behind him, and here, beautiful acoustic instrumentation envelopes his uneasy listening. From The Trees is simple and unadorned, with generous ladling of his legendarily wayward backing vocals.