GLASS has returned. The man and the music, into my psyche and out of my fingers and mouth. I can’t say any more at present, but I’ll try to get you all up to speed as soon as I can get my head round the past 11 years.
“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
Firstly, apologies once again for the delay in getting this update online. Partially this has been due to my continuing computer issues – despite upgrading to an Apple Mac, any attempt to record music in my studio is crippled by this “crosstalk” or interference I’m experiencing. I’ll try and post an example so hopefully one of you might be able to shed some light on a possible solution?
My research has continued, albeit slowly. For the most part I’m trying to determine the real story behind Anthony Glass’ fathers death. A shred of newspaper I’ve found in the bottom of a suitcase seems to report that Maurice Van Riper at the time of his acquital not only claimed his innocence but also asserted that he’d never even met Glass Snr. At the moment, I’m unsure if this was just a clever defence from the Colonel, or if Edward Glass was using people he was aware of in society at the time to bolster his fantasies.
My second main avenue of investigation concerns the machine itself – I’m assuming it must have actually existed as Anthony Glass mentions it in his journals throughout his life, even in his published “confessions”, when he would undertake speaking engagements with the sham portable version of the contraption.
Thirdly, I’m desperate to find out about the incident in York, UK where a routine execution of the portable machine somehow malfunctioned with what I take to be very grave circumstances. The original journal entry (posted here a few weeks ago) infuriatingly cuts off before AP Glass can give specifics, but so far I’ve not found any documentation after that date that mentions speaking engagements, or any public activity at all. I believe Glass did spend a considerable portion of his life in seclusion, it’s possible that the “York Incident” is what triggered this.
I’m continuing my fact-finding to the best of my ability, but I would appreciate any help the readers of this site could give me. Any clues, no matter how small and insignificant they seem, may be crucial.
After my last post regarding the cassette of strange noises I received anonymously, commenter ‘Thedaveyk’ kindly emailed me, this is what he said:
“Hi Alexander, I thought I’d heard that music somewhere before and I had! Took speaking to my wife to jog my memory tho – basically when she was at art college in Bristol in the late 80s, she bought a second-hand betamax video recorder from a car boot sale. When she got it home she found an unmarked tape left in the machine. It looked like the tape was damaged and the sound was pretty awful, it only lasted a couple of minutes but at the time she was doing art installations involving stacked up tellys so she decided to use it as it was a bit freaky. When I heard your cassette it rang a bell because that was the same audio that was on the video. Weird eh? Anyway it turns out my wife had already put the video on the computer a year or two back along with a load of her other video installations stuff as she’s a lecturer now and wanted to show her students, so I dug it out.
I’ve uploaded it up to Youtube so you can check it out. Do you think the person who made the video is the same person who gave you the cassette? Anyway, hope it helps you out. Cheers, Dave.”
This is Dave’s video – embedded here with kind permission.
Yesterday a cassette tape was pushed through my door – I don’t know exactly when, it was lying on my doormat when I arrived home from work. The cassette was unmarked, Â and the envelope was blank.
Although the sound quality is very poor, you can just about make out what appears to be music. I’m not sure if this is related to my research on this website, or if it’s someone’s idea of a practical joke, but I’ve digitised the recording and attached it to this update – make of it what you will.