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Glass Hammer

Symphonic Prog

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5 stars With its 66+ min.running time..this is by far GLASS HAMMERS best effort yet!! AND that says a lot !! Everyone who knows them ( and if you dont...shame on you!!)these are the guys who have bredeed new blood into this our world of wonderful prog music!! Anything you could care to mention in a progdream come true...its right here!!!For GLASS HAMMER are an absolutely exquisite taste of what the new prog music have come to!! Gentlemen Schendel & Babb as front figures (and head figures) plays all instruments,produces and writes all lyrics/music. There are plenty of keyboard themes and lush guitar intro´s/ outro´s/lead passages....riffs and beautiful fill several progalbums!! This album tells the story of a Roman soldier in conflict (in short)with himself and his surroundings. THIS album is a absolute STUNNER!! Every home (Prog home that is!!)should own one!! Need i say more...get this before your friend!!
Report this review (#16901)
Posted Friday, November 28, 2003 | Review Permalink
4 stars "Lex Rex" was the follow-up to GLASS HAMMER's masterpiece "Chronometree". The music follows the same direction with splendid keyboard dominated (Hammond, Mellotron, Moog etc.) progressive rock. The whole band however is blending and I don't have to mention any particular member, as they are all very good. Once again they have produced a concept album, this time it's a tale of a Roman soldier who's beset by ancient gods and goddesses. This album contains part one of the tale, which you can learn more about by buying this magnificent CD. This album is almost as good as "Chronometree". Musically it's equally good, but the compositions were slightly better on "Chronometree". GLASS HAMMER is the wet dream for all fans of progressive rock as they combine all the elements that make the genre so good. Great lengthy compositions, technically challenging music & musicians and on top of it all these beautiful cover artworks. The "Lex Rex" cover artwork by Rosana Azar is no exception. A must have, just like all the other GLASS HAMMER releases.
Report this review (#16904)
Posted Tuesday, January 13, 2004 | Review Permalink
Sean Trane
Prog Folk
2 stars Before I give advice , I generally try to listen to it at least once and if I like it then a lot more . But as an exception , I heard roughly 10-15 min scattered through the CD and this was more than enough for me to have a good idea that this was not for me but also for a lot of my friends and selective prog fans.

Not meaning to be disrespectful to the group as there is plenty of acceptable prog tracks as well as an immense workload input no doubt, but this is yet another typical start of the century prog production, like they are made by the hundreds these days

Report this review (#16906)
Posted Friday, February 27, 2004 | Review Permalink
4 stars Talking about their music, regarding of their previous albums, their compositions usually are stunning but also discontinuous in some circumstances; instead this new release is memorable and almost perfect from the beginning to the end, despite of its simplicity!! Long live GLASS HAMMER!! Their following album "Shadowlands" is probably more complex, but sometimes repetitive from the point of view of the harmonic solutions and talking about the sense of melody as well. Probably the right score should be a bit inferior regarding of some common places within the symphonic progressive genre, but the sense of melody is superior here, in comparison to "Shadowlands".

Make your own choice!!

Report this review (#16907)
Posted Thursday, April 1, 2004 | Review Permalink
5 stars What the heck is that? Why nobody told me about that band? Thanks a lot guys! Why this site don't recommend any of those albums? Nobody tells me anything here! Man, I'm always the last one to know stuff around here. Anyway, boy I should discovered them long ago. I would've invest my money in better places than Spock's Beard The Light or Flower Kings' Retropolis. Both are great albums but, come on, you gotta admit that Glass Hammer is A TRAGICALLY UNDERRATED BAND. What a fanstastic album. Lush mellotron, good guitar solos, snoring basses and Emerson-Wakeman keyboard. And a big round of applause for vocals, both masculine and feminine, that don't overdo it.

Story: centurion who seeks glory. Don't find it, 'cause gods are not down with it. Finds Jesus Christ. He's finally down with that. Thank you. Christian message is strong, but hey, a story about Rome is excused to include The Son of Jehovah. No surprise there.

Super melodic passages that, without the shadow of a doubt, will remind you many bands such as ELP, Yes and thank you lord....the almighty Echolyn. Think of Echolyn with more keyboards and slower pace with female vocals.

If you're a fan of keyboard driven music with concept and great Neil Young would say: this bud's for you!


Report this review (#16909)
Posted Thursday, October 21, 2004 | Review Permalink
5 stars Let's keep this short and sweet: Lex Rex is a superbly crafted masterpiece. The musicianship is second to none, definitely on par with the likes of Yes and early Genesis. The songwriting is top notch, telling a very compelling story that's interesting from start to finish. And the quality of the music itself is beyond reproach. Glass Hammer is, without a doubt, one of the world's most underrated progressive bands. A must have for any true fan of symphonic progressive rock.
Report this review (#16912)
Posted Monday, December 27, 2004 | Review Permalink
1 stars I expected to enjoy this album, after reading all the positive reviews, but after 4 listens I still can't find much to like about it. While some of the compositional complexity is interesting, the melodies are not memorable. The music seems somewhat derivative of early Yes and Genesis (which I'm a fan of), but not excecuted nearly as well. The female vocals are decent, but male vocals are weak. I didn't care for the sound of the keyboards or guitar; some bits in "Further Up and Further In" are annoyingly mosquito-like. The lyrics and story are not compelling, though perhaps a little above average for a Christian rock record (of which this is one). The goofy spoken voice tracks (1, 5, and 10) ruin the mood and are just plain embarrassing to listen to. Worth a full point off the score - I would never listen to this album in public! One part that piqued my interest was the use of a theme from Kate Bush's song "Kite" (from "The Kick Inside") in "Further Up and Further In" (6:30-6:55, 9:00) - but I'm sure this is just a coincidence. Though I didn't enjoy it, Lex Rex may be worth checking out if you're into retro keyboard-driven Christian rock - and are not easily embarassed.
Report this review (#16913)
Posted Monday, January 17, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars A well crafted concept album about a Roman soldier who seeks glory and discovers christianity. Lots of wonderful melodies and Yes-like multiple harmonies. Keyboard-driven, with various tremendous parts of Hammond, Moog and Mellotron. Great bass and guitar are giving fine reply. The vocal stance adds up to the superb song writing. The only minor point here is the production which, though flawless, sounds not crispy enough. Perhaps they should have used acoustic percussion instead of the electronic kit.
Report this review (#16914)
Posted Thursday, February 17, 2005 | Review Permalink
3 stars I got this cd, alongwith "Chronometree", off my wife for Xmas. This one is somewhat different, but still obviously Glass Hammer. See my review of "Chronometree" for my opinions on that. This one is far stronger in the vocal department, but the songs are not really any better, in my opinion. Mind you, they are in no ways worse either! The story, whilst being of little interest to an atheist, like myself, will appeal to readers of the Bible, telling, as it does the story of the Roman soldier whose spear pierced the side of Christ on the cross. I will not go into the individual songs here, as they are all of a similar standard, and run into each other nicely. Nevertheless, track two, "Tales Of The Great Wars" stands out to my ears, as does the fourth, "Further Up And Further In". Some excellent keyboards and guitar on these tracks. I also like the "Introduction" "Intermission" and "Goodnight" pieces, which make the band sound like after dinner speakers! "Music For Four Hands" is a lovely piano piece, which shows off Schendel's (or is it Babb's?) ability on the keyboard. The only drawback to me on this cd is the guitar work in general. Some of it is distictive, but some of it doesn't stand out as much as it should, certainly not like it does on "Chronometree" or "Shadowlands". No real weaknesses here though, and I can recommend this to anyone who likes the above mentioned albums. On other days I would give this four stars but today it has to settle for three. The more I hear this band the more I like them.
Report this review (#16915)
Posted Monday, February 21, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars If you're looking for a newer prog album that will transport you straight back to the classic 70s, look no further. This album sounds straight up like a sequel to Yes' 1977 release, Going for the One, specifically the GftO tracks Parallels and Awaken.

These are most longer songs, with three tracks in the 10 minute range or longer. The musicianship is expert. The keyboards are way out front: lots of wonderful, ascending organs that provide a very celestial sound. The guitars are also excellent, and reminiscent in a very pleasant way of the work by Yes guitarist Steve Howe. The rhythm section is equally excellent, and the vocals - while lower than Yes singer Jon Anderson - are also good.

The only reason this album is docked a star is the lyrics and the spoken word segments. Ouch! There's way too much about soldiers, swords and dragons. Where is Pete Sinfield when you need him? And the spoken word segue tracks are embarrassing; thankfully they are extremely brief and - as separate tracks - easily avoided.

But aside from that, this album is perfect 70s-style symphonic progressive rock, and is highly recommended.

Report this review (#36346)
Posted Sunday, June 12, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars I love Glass Hammer, and this record has some great moments. Although my religion is non- Christian, I don't judge this record based on it's very Christian overtones. Because the music is awesome, and the lyrics at least "sound" good in the songs.

My favorite song is "Further Up and Farther In", I listen to this song about twice a day!

If you like Yes, you should give GH a few spins!

Report this review (#41011)
Posted Saturday, July 30, 2005 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars I'm certainly not the first person to complain that Glass Hammer waste some absolutely superb classic sounding synth passages thanks to unnecessarily twee, pop-sounding vocals. I felt this problem on Shadowlands, which was the first album of theirs I encountered, and it is definitely worse on the preceeding album Chronometree. Sadly it's also present on Lex Rex (I'm none too impressed with the intro/intermission theatrics either!) but thankfully, the band's compositions are at among their strongest.

Musically, Lex Rex is probably the pinnacle of Glass Hammer's impressive reportoire as the ELP/Yes/Genesis influenced band moves from one exciting song to another ... The first song Tales Of Great Wars is liberally sprinkled with blistering synth work from Fred Schendel (or possibly Steve Babb), but during the first half of the song, the vocal melody threatens to ruin it, and it comes as something of a pleasant surprise therefore when some pleasing vocal harmonies ensue!

One King is practically a Yes tribute with piano, organ and synthesizer taking turns to dazzle, interspersed by an Anderson-like vocal line (which amazingly is just about the least irritating one here!) I could do without the Rabinesque guitar though. Unfortunately the 15 minute Further Up And Further In boasts majestic instrumental work that is almost destroyed by poor poppish vocal segments, that surely aren't in tune with the mood of a concept album about Ancient Rome.

The same applies to both A Cup Of Trembling and When We Young, which are totally power-packed until the lame vocal segments makes their presence felt, while Centurion actually manages the skill of being a good, progressive but un-Glass Hammer like tune, for most of it's duration.

Lex Rex is just about the best Glass Hammer of them all, but is still distinctly flawed in a way that other contemporary keyboard heavy albums really aren't. I would actually go for the works of the Scandinavian trio of Anglagard, Wobbler and Magic Pie, the US' Echolyn or Israel's Trespass before coming to this band. ... 55% on the MPV scale

Report this review (#65803)
Posted Saturday, January 21, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars Glass Hammer was recently recommended to me, so I bought two of their albums: The Inconsolable Secret and Lex Rex. It took me a while to get used to listening to this type of music as I tend to favor bands that are more guitar-oriented. Glass Hammer has a very electronic sound as they lay it on thick with the keyboards and the programmed drums with random cameos by a guitar. Now the bassist, Steve Babb, is very proficient and does an excellent job of augmenting the music with a strong bass line. Fred Schendel is the keyboard extraordinaire (and Babb helps out as well when it comes to the keys).

Lex Rex is a fascinating concept album that really works well in my opinion. After the emcee introduces the album, the first song ("Tales of the Great Wars") takes off and creates the setting for the rest of the album. Glass Hammer's vocals are nicely done right from the beginning with Babb providing the lead vocal in this song and the female vocals coming in from time to time to provide an almost haunting atmosphere to the epic. Babb's bass is tough as nails and Schendel provides a nice touch with some acoustic guitar strumming during the opening verses to deliver a rich texture to the sound. Every type of keyboard you can imagine seems to make an appearance at one time or another during this opening song.

"One King" is up next and starts off with a much softer feel than its predecessor as the second chapter of the story is told. Midway through it picks up steam and actually ends with a mini-climax which leads right into the third song.

"Further Up and Further In" clocks in at 15:13 and delivers all sorts of musical treats. After the typical keyboard acrobatics that I think ELP fans would enjoy, the song gets into a nice rhythm with a delightful combination of vocals (both Babb and Bogdanowicz), keyboard chords along with a subtle acoustic guitar.

The album then has an intermission where the narrator returns in an attempt to inject some light-hearted humor. I find this to be a pointless exercise as this is a music album. The short intermission is a waste of time and I always find myself saying, "Come on, let's get back to the music!"

Of course, things really take off at this point. The second half of this album is just outstanding, in my opinion. "Music for Four Hands" is a two minute highlight reel instrumental that sets the tone for the second half. "A Cup of Trembling" follows and is a great Glass Hammer song. This song provides some great lyrics as the concept of the album is fleshed out from the perspective of a Roman soldier who has searched for fame and glory all his life in battle and now takes part in the arrest and scourging of Jesus and makes this confession: "I would find what I sought at the point of my spear."

"Centurion" is next and continues the story of Jesus and the Romans decision to put the self-proclaimed King to death. A more melancholy melody exists throughout this song, as you might imagine.

"When We Were Young" is the culminating song of the album and goes back to the perspective of the Roman soldier who with his sword pierced Jesus' side during the crucifixion and is now standing watch by the tomb. As he ponders his role in the death of Jesus with regret, the music steadily crescendoes and even incorporates what sounds like an electric guitar to give a soulful touch. (I guess that sound is just as likely to come from a keyboard though considering that this is Glass Hammer and they seem to be able to make just about any sound they want with one of Fred Schendel's electronic gadgets.) The song continues to build and reaches an amazing climax with two refrains being sung at the same time attempting to describe just what happens when Jesus is resurrected from the dead as one set of vocals is singing what is happening physically and the other is describing the spiritual ramifications. This is a very interesting song whether you believe in the historical figure of Jesus or not and you can hear it right here on Prog Archives. Give it a listen!

The album is wrapped up with "Heroes and Dragons" which is a light acoustic song but is perhaps my favorite with its soft, subtle sounds. The concept closes with a present day charge based upon what happened to Jesus two thousand years in the past.

I really like this album and think it is a worthy addition to any prog collection. If you want to give Glass Hammer a try, this is an excellent place to start.

Report this review (#77750)
Posted Wednesday, May 10, 2006 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
3 stars Certanly can't complain about the musicianship on this concept album. The keyboard and synth work is amazing, and there is also mellotron sampling on several tracks.

The SOMNAMBULIST lead guitarist guests on "One King" which is my favourite song on this record, great harmonies as well.This is a fantastic tune.The longest song "Further Up And Further In" has everything you can imagine played on it, the whole ball of wax.The guitar work really shines on "A Cup Of Trembling". The final tune "Heroes And Dragons" is a mellow affair with strummed guitar, synths and vocals.

I guess i'm in the middle on this one, it's good but it's just not that great in my opinion.

Report this review (#95463)
Posted Sunday, October 22, 2006 | Review Permalink
3 stars I really don't understand why so many progheads consider this band as the best US based one in the symphonic prog category.

To me, it has always been a YesClone in the vein of "Starcastle". No more. I admit that they also cloned ELP very much in "Chronometree". Of innovative music, there are not much to say, I'm afraid.

Even if a song as "Tales Of The Great Wars" is not bad per se, it holds all the elements (vocals, guitar, synth, off-beats) of a classic YesSong but performed by some sort of tribute band. Don't get me wrong: the song is very pleasant, musicians play very well but it is only a copy of what has been done some thirty years before this album. So, what's the fuss?

The whole of this album (over sixty five minutes!) is just a travel through the YesSounds I praise so much while played by the original and great band we all love.

Keyboards lovers will be very pleased throughout all these songs. They are declined in lots of forms: synth, mellotron, piano, moog and organ which brings a lot of variety in sounds. But these Anderson vocals oriented are just too much. He is of course not the only one to have been imitated (isn't it Peter?).

Now, to be honest, "Lex Rex" is their best effort so far. At least I consider it as such. But the epic "Further Up And Further In" features rather weak and unexpressive vocals and the instrumental parts are not really thrilling either. The sections I prefer are the short and Howesque guitar breaks.

While releasing "Lex Rex", the band could have made this very long story shorter. It would have been beneficial for the interest of this work which falls somewhat flat throughout its length.

Three stars.

Report this review (#171363)
Posted Sunday, May 18, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars First Listening, once again the American Symphonic Prog outfit suprise me with yet another supreme example of the Genre they grace majestically. If you listen carefully you will get the essence of Yes, Genesis, ELP, but it's a mix and it works for me. After the intro which is supposed to be a victorian music hall Master of ceremonies (he appears twice more in the intermission and goodnight), the first track proper is Tales of Great wars. At 10:42 a nice prog length composition full of hammond and synthesizer arpegios and some Wakeman like synth soloing, I like it already. Track THREE is ONE KING and at 6:07 a more modest length, again more yes influence with nice synth and piano with a jazz/rock feel. Then the EPIC, FURTHER UP AND FURTHER IN, which is 15:13 and it's a superlative example of GH at their best, Excellent start with ELP themed synth then rich piano and sumptuous synthesizers. You get a bit of the Fountain of Salmacis (see if you can hear it!) thenan Emerson like Piano break, then Hammond organ arpegios straight out of Apocalypse in 9/8, ITS ACE. After the intermission, we get Music for four hands a nice piano duet, then a track A Cup of Trembling, nice guitar work and good Bass line and a very nice synth solo. Centurion has Piano a Guitar solo and a lovely Synth Fugue. Track 9, when we were Young has nice synths and Genesis Hammond (Colony of Slippermen?). It finishes with a nice little track Heroes and Dragons and I have been taken through a wonderful pastiche of prog themes, all aimed straight for my ear. The Theme is of a Roman Soldier, fooled by his gods to supposedly become Longinus, the Centurian who thrust his spear into the side of Christ on the Cross, and who is then converted to Christianity and away from his pagan roots. Again this CD deserves a 4.75 - To 4.8, BUT it'll get rounded down to a FOUR, PAH
Report this review (#175812)
Posted Monday, June 30, 2008 | Review Permalink
3 stars Retro-sympho-whatever prog that has no pretensions of being anything but. Yes is the dominating influence, with a lot of motifs being taken straight out of or highly reminiscent of the prog giant's triumvirate of prog albums (Close to the Edge, Tales from Topographic Oceans, and Relayer). The bass and drums are more static that in a lot of prog, and perhaps too high in the mix for what they offer, but the melodic guitar and keys always keep things interesting, and the pacing of the album feels just right - not a bad way to spend an hour, if you're into this sort of thing. I've heard some complaints about the vocals, and they might be valid as far as raw talent, but the writing for the voice lines is pretty well developed.

A safe bet if you want a recreation of peak Yes and to a lesser extent ELP - this is probably the moment in Glass Hammer's discography that is least likely to disappoint. If you demand innovation, it's not for you, but that doesn't detract from it being a strong album.

Report this review (#417413)
Posted Wednesday, March 16, 2011 | Review Permalink
5 stars The realm of keyboards! As a lover of classic prog, I can only love this wonderful album! Superb melodies, incredible keyboards, excellent sounds of guitar and bass, all very beautiful and flawlessly played . I honestly do not understand some low ratings given to this album: I read several negative arguments, in my opinion quite wrong. Without naming anyone, a reviewer says that at the beginning of the century were produced hundreds of albums like this one: I think instead that Glass Hammer, in particular with this disc, are unique and consistent with their search for vintage melodies and sounds. Another reviewer said that the voice sounds too pop: it is partly true, but music is the only real strength of Glass Hammer, the voice in my opinion it's not so important; moreover, other very good bands have voice not really prog, just think about "Bon Jovi like" Neal Morse of Spock's Beard and Transatlantic. Other reviewers say that Glass Hammer are not very innovative and are clones of Yes and ELP: for my part, I loved so much that musical period, but I think it lasted too short, maybe 4-5 years(1970 to 1974), then welcome to the new bands that refer to that period and those sacred cows, especially if music produced by these new bands is of the highest level as that of Glass Hammer!
Report this review (#446184)
Posted Thursday, May 12, 2011 | Review Permalink
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars After a brief change in character in order to capitalize on the Lord Of The Rings craze, Glass Hammer is back to doing what it does best: blending the styles of the seventies prog masters. Here, they take the lush vocal and instrumental arrangements of Yes, and combine it with the theatrical style and relatively simple keyboard parts of Genesis, and come up with a decent album.

The concept is that we are at a performance of an old minstrel show, witnessing a tale of gods and soldiers. The vocals are often too emotive, and the Christian message, while not too heavy, does put me off a bit.

Musically, the blend of styles I mentioned above does have some spectacular moments, usually when Fred Schendel is on guitar (he channels Steve Howe on slide guitar amazingly). At other times, the Yes stylings with less-than-Wakeman-like keyboards brings up images of Starcastle.

There are ups and downs, but generally this is a worthy album.

Report this review (#721412)
Posted Tuesday, April 10, 2012 | Review Permalink
5 stars Essential.

I am surprised that this album is not rated into the top 100 prog albums. This is one of my personal favourite albums of all time, but I guess this is just one of those albums that I just instantly loved. The musicianship of the group at this point was incredible, and the blend of driven rock riffs, neo-classical and european folk influences, odd time signatures, jazz chord progressions and mythical storytelling only add to the superb surrealism that the band had set in its early years.

The album is a concept album about a roman soldier's encounter with Jesus. Many may find the concept and storyline of the album overpowering, but it will be very enjoyable to those who are fans of concept albums and who do not mind an underlying christian message. The album is by no means a gospel album; in fact many people claimed it to be overly inspired by the likes of Yes and Genesis. I however think that this album is quite original and I believe that Glass Hammer are the leading prog/symphonic rock band around today.

The whole album is a masterpiece, but I think I prefer the first half of the album. The standout tracks are "Tales of the Great Wars", "One King", "Further Up and Further In" and "When We Were Young". You can buy this album directly from their site and some albums come in package deals, so there is hardly a reason not to buy it. I think that this album would be perfect on vinyl, as it is so obviously split into two sides, so let's hope for a vinyl rerelease!

This album is a great listen and everyone should give it at least a few listens!


Report this review (#906516)
Posted Tuesday, February 5, 2013 | Review Permalink
kev rowland
Crossover Prog Team
5 stars For those with long memories I have reviewed Glass Hammer before but it was way back in #36 (August '96) when I gave them a strong review for their second album 'Perelandra'. Now it is 2000 and this is their seventh album so what do I think now? It starts with an announcer telling invited guests about the concert that is going to take place. Later there is an intermission as well as a thanks at the end where the gentlemen are invited to retire to have some brandy while the ladies have some refreshments. Each time I heard it I couldn't help thinking of Jethro Tull's 'A Minstrel In The Gallery' where a similar device has rather more effect.

But in no way is that going to detract from what is a quite superb album. It is multi-faceted and multi-layered and given that it is basically all the work of just two people (Steve Babb and Fred Schendel) the accomplishment is even more remarkable. When I played this the first time I put it on immediately after playing The Flower Kings, and I was struck by just how different the two albums were. This also brings in many strands and musical styles but they all become part of the overall theme instead of trying to take over the piece. Both guys are strong singers, as well as good musicians and this is an album that I have really enjoyed playing. It is prog that while often based on keyboards also has a strong guitar element and manages to be all things to all progheads as those who want shorter songs can have them while those who want long instrumental passages are also catered for.

It may have been six years since I last reviewed a Glass Hammer album but yet again I find myself recommending that all proggers get hold of this as soon as possible. Visit the band web site at

Originally appeared in Feedback #70, Oct 02

Report this review (#978131)
Posted Saturday, June 15, 2013 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Always inspired by Tolkien's writings, Glass Hammer decided to fully dedicate an album to the legendary writer, recording and releasing ''The middle Earth album'' in 2001, somewhat moving away from their progressive sensibilties for a more rural approach, a work that received mixed reviews.But they would soon recover, launching ''Lex Rex'' in 2002, a comeback to Prog Rock, now featuring some extra guitar work by Bjřrn Lynne with a four-piece backing vocal group.

''Lex Rex'' finds Glass Hammer reaching their creative pinnacle, all these huge 70's influences and aesthetics have been nicely balanced, Schendel and Babb had musically matured and the result was a top 2002 album of full-blown Symphonic Rock with evident YES and E.L.P. influences.The vocal parts and production sound of course very American, they actually sound a bit close to MAGELLAN at moments, but the arrangements, jazzy guitar snippets and huge Classical influences in the piano parts are well within the STEVE HOWE/RICK WAKEMAN range.Now, the whole thing about Symphonic-oriented Prog is to find room and place elements like pomposity, complexity, grandieur and melody in equal doses and additionally mix all those properly to sound like technically efficient yet elaborate mini symphonies.That's what exactly Glass Hammer achieved with ''Lex Rex'', there's no particular element prevailing in the album and for the first time you feel there are no blank holes or fillers, even during the longest piece, while the shorter tunes have also a reason of existence.The band switches with unmet comfort between instrumental long plays with keyboard tricks and interactions to smoother performances with a lyrical depth and a strong sense of melody.Beautiful combination of layered synthesizers with big time Mellotron preludes and thrilling organs, some nice acoustic textures to be found next to the regular electric moves and well-arranged vocal harmonies, material with emotion and virtuosity, great piece of art.

''Lex Rex'' is also an attempt by the band to leave the dominant YES influences behind, they haven't fully achieved to do so, but at least this is their most original album to date, their style starts to become a little distinctive.Great reincarnation of Classic Prog values, no less than highly recommended.

Report this review (#1385401)
Posted Saturday, March 21, 2015 | Review Permalink

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