Van der Graaf Generator
Beacon Theatre
New York, NY
18 October 1976

There are two recordings of this show. The most widely circulated version is 'First and Last' (T-618) which uses both recorder 1 (CD 1, CD 2 tracks 2-3) and recorder 2; it does not include CD 3 track 1). This version is all from recorder 1 and does not use T-618 except for the patch in The Sleepwalkers (from r2).


This version has been put together from four sources:

Source 1. CDr received in a trade, probably from vapp (they have the same running order and times). It's the most complete with only a gap in The Sleepwalkers (3 minutes are missing) presumably a tape flip on the master as all copies have this. Importantly it has all the audience noise before Arrow which is missing on sources 2 and 3, and T-618). Frequencies cut-off at 5-7,000 Hz compared to T-618's r1 tracks which are over 20,000 Hz. Only used for the audience calls for an encore before Arrow.

Source 2. New transfer of an old tape received in the late 70s/early 80s. The Introduction and beginning of When She Comes, PH's intro to Still Life and the audience before Arrow are all missing and there is a tape flip (about 30 seconds are missing) in Arrow. Arrow is between La Rossa and Still Life but there are gaps before and after it. Slightly dull sound. Only used in Arrow and EQd to boost mid range and treble.

Source 3. Received about 10 years ago and not played until now. Runs from Still Life to the end of the show. Arrow is incomplete and at the end of the tape after Masks. PH's intro to Still Life and audience before Arrow are missing. Some hiss but only noticeable in the quiet parts,

Source 4. This has the same running order and track times as Source 1 but with better frequencies. There are problems mainly in LHC channel which sound like a tape transfer issue starting at the end of La Rossa that limited its use after the intro to Still Life.

Sources 1-3 from nadir_53.
Source 4 downloaded from LaMa at Soulseek


In the past there has been some doubt about where Arrow and Still Life were played in the set. The running order in the Stereo Sonic Smack and on 'First and Last' is:

When She Comes > Lemmings > La Rossa > Arrow > Still Life >
Meurglys III > Gog > The Sleepwalkers > Man-Erg > Killer > Masks has:
When She Comes > Lemmings > La Rossa > Meurglys III >
Gog > The Sleepwalkers > Man-Erg > Arrow > Still Life > Killer > Masks

Listening to the PH's introductions and the crowd this can be easily solved:

- Still Life is in the middle of the set. Before it PH says "�we know what we are going to play and right at the moment we are deep in the middle of the very heavy songs area�� [and in response to requests]��so just hang on and they will come." This only makes sense if it is being played between La Rossa and Meurglys, and the audience is far too restrained for it to be an encore. On sources 1 and 4 there are gaps before and after it.

- Arrow is the first encore. You can hear the crowd calling for more before it's played and the crowd noise before it starts is similar to that at the end of Man-Erg. The tone of PH's voice when he introduces it has the feel of the band triumphantly returning to the stage. Sources 1, 2 and 4 have gaps before and after Arrow. Source 3 has it after Masks!

The correct running order is:

CD 1
01. Introduction
02. When She Comes
03. Lemmings
04. La Rossa

CD 2
01. Still Life
02. Meurglys III
03. Gog
04. The Sleepwalkers
05. Man-Erg

CD 3
01. encore
02. Arrow
03. Killer
04. Masks


Source 4
Source 3 except:
PH intro to Still Life from source 4
The Sleepwalkers patch (5.26-8.48) recorder 2 from T-618 (a longer patch was used for a smoother transition back to r1)
Source 3 except:
encore - source 1
Arrow - 0.00-00.42 (source 1), 00.42-03.38 (source 2), 03.38-09.42 (source 3), 09.42-end (source 2)
Killer - 00.00-00.24 from source 1