A Black Box
|A Black Box|
|Studio album by|
|Recorded||November 1979 – April 1980|
|Studio||Sofa Sound, Wiltshire|
|Peter Hammill chronology|
|Record Mirror||(elusive) |
A Black Box is the ninth studio album by Peter Hammill, originally released on S-Type Records in August 1980.
Hammill performed nearly all the instrumentation himself, including the drum parts, a task he had first undertaken on his previous album pH7. His ex-Van der Graaf Generator colleague David Jackson also made a guest appearance, along with David Ferguson of the new-wave band Random Hold, whose debut album Hammill had produced.
Side 1 of the record featured a collection of songs, while side 2 was devoted to "Flight", a lengthy multi-section song. This was the first time Hammill had included a lengthy song of this type on one of his solo albums.
The short-lived S-Type label (the name was a pun on "stereo-type"), on which the album was originally released, was set up by Hammill and his then manager Gail Colson. Colson had formerly been a director at Hammill's previous record company, Charisma Records, who had dropped him from their roster just prior to the recording of A Black Box. The S-Type label does not appear to have been a successful business project, and the album was later licensed to Virgin Records, who have since also acquired Hammill's Charisma catalogue.
All songs written by Peter Hammill, except where indicated.
- "Golden Promises"
- "Losing Faith in Words"
- "Jargon King"
- "The Spirit"
- "In Slow Time" (Hammill, David Ferguson)
- "The Wipe"
- Flying Blind
- The White Cane Fandango
- Silk-Worm Wings
- Nothing Is Nothing
- A Black Box
- Peter Hammill – vocals, guitar, keyboards, drums, bass
- David Jackson – saxophone, flute on 4 and 8
- David Ferguson – synthesiser and tambourine on 4, 6 and 7
- David Lord – engineer, mixing