…But, it’s that magical chemistry that results from the clever lyrics and bizarre arrangements, that will make you feel like you just can’t help but admire the ingenuity and abandon that Glass brings to the fore.
“There is a fine line between artistic merit and pretension, and on paper a debut concept album, inspired by the life of a 19th Century inventor most listeners will never have heard of, slides firmly over to the latter side of the scale. This is one of many reasons why music can never be judged on paper. ‘The Sound of Glass’ is a gripping and exquisite blend of post-punk and dark pop akin to current NME darlings The Horrors that is sure to storm the mainstream. This is an album of ballads in the purest sense of the word, an all-too-brief collection of seven tales that will take you out of the mundane realities of your day to some kind of dim and distant dream state, crisply produced and artfully arranged without stretching any structural boundaries – indeed, there is nothing overtly complex here. Herein lies the beauty of ‘The Sound of Glass’ – too fey for those with heavier tastes, but a batch of songs that can provoke such an emotional response while still providing hummable and memorable rhythms without any real visceral impact is to be applauded.”
“This album was inspired by the inventor from the 19th Century, Anthony Philip Glass. He apparently invented a machine that could transmit sound through time. This is quite an apt title for an album that actually sounds like it has fallen through time from an unspecified decade. ‘Driftwood’s Daughter’ kicks the album off in a crisp indie style, not particularly dark or alternative but good all the same. What is immediately apparent is what a great voice vocalist Alexander King has. ‘Without’ is a much darker track and the bands Post Punk influences become more apparent with a bit of White Lies thrown in for good measure. ‘This Odyssey’ is a rocking little number that is on your free covermount CD. ‘Nothing in the World’ is a track which starts quite sorrowful and then gradually builds into something much more powerful and rocky. The next track ‘When the Rain Falls’ is probably the darkest track on the album. Alexander gets a chance to show off his impressive vocal range with some intelligent lyrics and a catchy but emotional chorus. ‘The Last Transmission’ has a different feel in that it sounds like poetry set to music if that makes sense, and ‘My Elan’ sees the album end in a quite Punk/Deathrock fashion. This is a band that definitely has mainstream potential as well as alternative appeal, but still manages to pull off that tricky task of maintaining a style all of their own.”
I’ve been researching the life of Anthony Glass for over a year, and so far I’ve got more questions than answers. A bizarre collection of coincidences, synchronicity and luck, or are there larger forces at work?
Since the album launch I’ve had more time to start filing and organising the resources I’ve managed to lay my hands on so far. It’s a baffling jigsaw puzzle of first, second and third hand reports about a mysterious man who might never even have existed – at least in any way we would recognise. I’ve been taking copious notes in a bid to get my thoughts in order and have managed to transport a good carload of papers and documentation back to my home where I can start putting the known facts in some kind of context.
Which are the most pressing questions? Well, the death of Glass Snr. is obviously a key event – and Colonel Van Riper’s involvement in it. There’s much to learn about the lives of both men which I think could lead to some kind of answer as to how Edward Glass died and who was responsible. The machines, both full sized and portable – what happened to them? Was Anthony Glass a clever hoaxster, as his father was purported to be? And what of Anthony’s mother, Edward’s wife – the trail rapidly goes cold once Anthony is sent away following his father’s death (murder?).
And bringing us up to date – how do the cassette tape, the discovered video recording and the business cards people report finding fit in? Am I the subject of an extension of the Glass myth? Is someone mocking me, and if so – why? All I know is, I must find answers. Anthony Glass and his peculiar story are seeping into my life, my work, and the music I produce to the point where I wonder how much of it I’m in control of.
YORK BAND ‘GLASS’ RELEASE DEBUT ALBUM WITH A LAUNCH SHOW AT THE DUCHESS, YORK ON SATURDAY 16th JANUARY
In early 2008 GLASS singer/guitarist Alexander King inherited the contents of a storage unit, in which was a suitcase of letters, news clippings and journals relating to Anthony Philip Glass, a 19th Century inventor and showman. Anthony Glass had a colourful life, purporting to have invented a machine that transmits sound through time which he toured the world demonstrating. His life story – pieced together in a gripping blog updated by Alexander (www.thesoundofglass.com) – is peppered with murder, intrigue and a stay in York’s own Bootham Park Hospital (then York County Lunatic Asylum).
Inspired by the man himself, the band GLASS was formed, and present their debut album with a launch show at The Duchess in York on Saturday the 16th of January. Compared to Roxy Music, Wire, Editors, Magazine, The Cult, Interpol and The Cure among others GLASS deal in stark, powerful rock with surrealist lyrics and a highly theatrical live show.
Support on the night comes from two of York’s finest indie-rock acts â€“ Dorien Starre and The Blueprints.
Formed in early 2008 GLASS represent the best of the classic post-punk and new-wave acts while tapping into the current vogue of dark rock (Editors, White Lies, Interpol etc). The band consists of Alexander King (vocals and guitar), Andy Curry (vocals and synths), Jim Stafford (bass) and Dan Whiting (drums). GLASS have already shared a stage with up and coming national acts like Ipso Facto, Cinematics, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and Victorian English Gentlemen’s Club.