Happy Owner of New CD

The eighth album

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pktheater
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Hiding From Lisette

Post by pktheater » Tue Jan 13, 2004 12:42 pm

I received a copy of Shadowlands in the mail this past weekend. My car has crappy speakers, so I made myself promise to wait until Monday to listen to it. That way, I could listen on a decent set of headphones and remain relatively undisturbed while do it. After two days and several listenings, I can say that Glass Hammer continues to impress and thrill me. Perelandra was my favorite disc until I listened to On To Evermore. It was my favorite until Lex Rex. Shadowlands is quickly taking that spot.

It is interesting to listen to earlier albums -- yes, I said albums -- to see how far the band has evolved. Yet, those earlier efforts are still just as good today. I have been a Glass Hammer fan since that fateful DragonCon many years ago. (It's a funny story. Ask me sometime.) I will always be a Glass Hammer fan.

I have to mirror several people in saying Run Lisette is my favorite track. I'm a sucker for a beautiful female voice and this track features three of them. Susie, Sarah, and Bethany... You've captivated me here. But that is not to say I don't appreciate Flo's wonderful voice in So Close, So Far. And, as always, Fred, Steve, and Walter deliver some powerful vocals as well.

I'm no music critic, just a man with simple tastes. I can say that this album is one that I really enjoy and will continue to enjoy for many years to come. I doff my chapeau to the lot of you. Thank you all for a wonderful album. As for Lisette, she'd better keep her grubby, horsy hoofs off of my Glass Hammer stash.

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Sam Gamgee
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Re: Hiding From Lisette

Post by Sam Gamgee » Tue Jan 13, 2004 5:16 pm

pktheater wrote:(It's a funny story. Ask me sometime.)
Well, I don't know if I'm patient enough to wait for 'sometime' - ;)

How bout now? What's the story?
[color=#ff6600][i]Workings of man crying out from the fires set aflame
By his blindness to see that the warmth of his being
Is promised for his seeing, his reaching so clearly[/i][/color]

[url]http://www.ghfan.net[/url]

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got it 2day and already listened to it twice (and again now)

Post by punx » Tue Jan 13, 2004 11:02 pm

OK, this is by no means a complete review, and I have not read anything else anyone has written per se about it, other than obviously everyone likes it. :lol:

THIS ALBUM IS THE GREATEST GH ALBUM EVER (until the next one) :lol:

No, really! If you have been following GH like I have since ProgScape '96 (or '95, it was Towson, MD and I remember that the footage on TWTE (any chance of that coming to DVD, fair Mayor?) is from it, but the year is wrong (the Mayor hates when I mention that :P ) when I met them, the progression (no pun intended) in the complexity and general coolness of their music has been apparent. I thought maybe they would have hit their apex when they released Chronometree, which to me (and everyone who I have either played it for or :oops: burned copies for :oops:) is one of the best homages to prog-rock's heyday short of a King Crimson tour :lol:, since it pulled together threads of all that made their previous works so great into one composition, laced with some wondrous humor and pitch perfect sturm und drang of an ELP circa Brain Salad Surgery or Yes circa Tales of Topographic Oceans (extra credit question for savvy listeners: on what GH album is that Yes album title paraphrasedly quoted?).

Not to discount The Middle Earth Album, which while stepping backward toward Mordor, strides forward toward Rome :lol:. In other words, we've heard this before (and loved it, don't get me wrong), and yet the touches on the "studio" side of the album (not to mention The Making Of A Glass Hammer Adventure) hinted toward what was yet to come in the form of Lex Rex.

Let me give my opinion of Lex Rex by quoting a passage from the current masterpiece:

Try-try and dismiss what it says
Even if you wanted to wrap your head around
Just the sheer size of it all-
Better ignore it instead.


I still haven't digested the hugeness of the story even now, so I just give credit that Lex Rex is an awesome album (not to be confused with the sheer huh?!? of On To Evermore, but I digress (Hey Mayor! :P :P :P).

But enough about the past, now for the present!

Because it happens to be the song playing at this moment as I write this, let me say that for their first recorded non-classical cover (gold star to anyone (not including the band itself or extant :P) who can mention the live covers, considering the huge number of live shows they've done in the last ten years :lol:), they knock "Longer" by Dan Fogelberg (which happens to fit right into the chronological heyday of prog-rock, though not of the genre, obviously) not just out of the park, ladies and gents, it leaves the water-holder-backer state! I will never hear that song the same way again. It's like (to me, I know some may not agree) when Metallica went and recorded Bob Seger's "Turn The Page," in that they hewed to the song's core, but made the song completely theirs in the process without losing the power inherent in the song itself. Maybe that isn't so much true in GH's execution of "Longer," considering the original is way shorter, quieter and not really powerful, but it gives it a stylistic shift that if you didn't know it was a cover, you'd swear it was their own.

Not to shortchange the rest of the tracks, but it is going to take me more listens to get to the heart of them all, but if I were to compare this album to any other GH album, I'd say it fits well alongside Chronometree as one of the two best '70's prog-rock albums of the 21st century, which at last count, if you include Chronometree, is two :D

You get the point, though. As I said at the top, this is the best GH album yet, but I have no doubt that the next one will be just as good if not better (please, dear Mayor, do not take that comment as a challenge, it is not meant to be).

Now if we could only get another Wyzards album going (it has theoretically been over 20 years, my god Boston releases albums more often :lol:)...............

Fredrick (yes, Steve, I am a great man!) Beondo

P.S. I like to think I am the only GH fan in the NYC area, anyone else want to chime in from NYC or the tri-state area?
Last edited by punx on Wed Jan 14, 2004 12:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Sam Gamgee » Tue Jan 13, 2004 11:08 pm

Tales of the Great Wars! Muaha!
punx wrote: if you didn't know it was a cover, you'd think it was their own.
JUst to make you all feel old, I wasn't alive when this song came out. I wasn't even aware of its existence. Then I heard the GH version, read the lyricvs thought, "Gee, this is really weird for GH". The instruments sounded classical GHy, but I knew there wasn't something quite GH at the core. Then I listened to the real version, and all I could hear is the prog. It was interesting. Sooooo, a stupid sappy song has permanently been made Awesome for me! Muaha!
[color=#ff6600][i]Workings of man crying out from the fires set aflame
By his blindness to see that the warmth of his being
Is promised for his seeing, his reaching so clearly[/i][/color]

[url]http://www.ghfan.net[/url]

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punx
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Post by punx » Tue Jan 13, 2004 11:23 pm

Sam Gamgee wrote:Tales of the Great Wars! Muaha!
:?: :?: :?: :?:
punx wrote: if you didn't know it was a cover, you'd swear it was their own.

Sam Gangee wrote:JUst to make you all feel old, I wasn't alive when this song came out.


I was (born 5/5/70) :)

Sam Gangee wrote:I wasn't even aware of its existence.


I was :)

Sam Gangee wrote:Then I heard the GH version, read the lyricvs thought, "Gee, this is really weird for GH". The instruments sounded classical GHy, but I knew there wasn't something quite GH at the core. Then I listened to the real version, and all I could hear is the prog. It was interesting. Sooooo, a stupid sappy song has permanently been made Awesome for me! Muaha!
I agree :)

8)

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My Funny Story

Post by pktheater » Wed Jan 21, 2004 12:33 pm

Sam was kind enough to ask about my first Glass Hammer experience, which I made the bold claim to being a funny story. I've posted that over in the Prancing Pony, for any and all brave and foolhardy enough to give it a read. 8)

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