I can’t escape my past. Nostalgia (“the pain of remembering”) means I have to attempt to exorcise the demons of my childhood, by whatever means at my disposal.
Category: Found Documents
As research pays dividends I will post up new chapters and snippets of the Glass story, so hopefully the reader can start to make sense of it all.
I found it. An mp3 file on an old hard drive. A recording of a numbers station. Mandela Effect. A new song. A release date – 11th March 2022.
Those numbers – 35719 – are written on a sticker on one of the suitcases I got from the storage unit. I don’t remember seeing the sticker before, but perhaps a decade ago when I packed everything away it stuck in my subconscious somehow.
I still don’t know the significance of the numbers, or why they appear in my dreams. I don’t know what/who the woman’s voice is, but I continue to research.
On the face of it, the woman speaking sounds robotic, like a numbers station. I will update as I find out more.
“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.”
– Greg Porter
“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.”
– Mark Smith
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.
From the Eastern Daily Press, May 8th 1926:
Colonel Maurice Van Riper (born in Norwich 8th April 1850) has passed away aged 76, of heart failure.
Having moved to London early in his teens, Van Riper first worked as a butcher before enlisting with the British Army and seeing action in Abyssinia, the first and second Boer wars among others, and being rightly and notably recognised for his leadership and firm resolve.
Van Riper retired due to illness in 1920 with full honours and worked mainly in the private sector offering his extensive skills to the world of commerce and business.
The Colonel will be most familiar to readers due to the unfortunate allegations made against him at the turn of the century by the son of Edward Glass, a London entrepeneur who was shot and killed in suspicious circumstances. Van Riper was cleared of all charges and maintained until his death he had never met Edward Glass or his son, blaming the elder Glass’ peculiar mindset being as he was something of a fantasist.
He is survived by a son Terence and a daughter Lilly.
It has now come to light that following the York Incident, Anthony Glass spent between 1933 and 1940 in Bootham Park Hospital, also in York. Whether this was a direct result of what happened at the City Art Gallery, or if his crumbling mental state finally required him to seek rehabilitation is not clear. Either way, the trail goes somewhat cold at this point.
Bootham Park Hospital was built Â as York County Lunatic Asylum around 1777, and was one of the earliest psychiatric hospitals in the North of England.
In 1772 at a meeting at York Castle, the Archbishop of York called together gentlemen of the three ridings of Yorkshire, along with Dr Alexander Hunter and architect John Carr. His intention was to create a lunatic asylum to prevent the mentally ill from being placed in unsuitable institutions like prisons. Carr’s practice was at its peak and the grand building was completed by 1777.
With its applied Tuscan columns, pediment and fashionable Venetian windows, it was reported in the press as “an elegant and expensive affair”, but it didn’t please everyone. William Mason, a Precentor at the Minster, wrote that its extravagant design was a waste of public money and suggested it should instead be advertised as “a lunatic hotel”. It was later discovered that despite its grandiose exterior some patients were held in terrible squalor. Indeed the conditions at the asylum were the stimulus for the foundation of the The Retreat at York which became world renowned for its pioneering treatment of the mentally ill.
The abuses at the York Asylum later became the centre of a great controversy. A national investigation in 1813-14 led to questions in Parliament. Some of the asylum records were burned in a suspiciously timed fire and two different sets of financial accounts were discovered. The resulting scandal led to substantial reforms in the way the hospital was run.
If the information I’ve discovered is correct, Glass would have been around 50 years old when he emerged from Bootham Park, by which time the Second World War was underway. I think it’s quite unlikely he would have been drafted to the war effort with his history of mental instability – but with no career, no reputation, very little family and surely a dwindling or non-existent inheritance, what would Glass do next?