5 November 1948, Ealing, London, England. In 1967, singer-songwriter and guitarist Hammill formed Van Der Graaf Generator in Manchester, England, with university friends Nick Peame (keyboards) and Chris Judge Smith (drums). The band collapsed without making any recordings, but in 1968 it was re-formed with Hammill joined by Keith Ellis (bass), Guy Evans (drums) and Hugh Banton (keyboards). Hammill had intended to release a solo album, but the new Van Der Graaf Generator seized on his material, the result being the celebrated The Aerosol Grey Machine. The band always enjoyed greater success in Europe than in the UK, and broke up for a third and more permanent time in 1978.
Van Der Graaf Generators dissolution gave Hammill the opportunity to continue with the limited success he had already found in his solo career, which he now pursued again. He has maintained a prolific output ever since, counting contemporary artists such as Peter...