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Cor Cordium [Import]

Glass Hammer Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: 16.06 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Cor Cordium + If + Perilous
Price For All Three: 49.49

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Product details

  • Audio CD (25 Oct 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Arion
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 130,972 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

1. Nothing Box (10:53) 2. One Heart (6:20) 3. Salvation Station (5:08) 4. Dear Daddy (10:30) 5. To Someone (18:15) 6. She, A Lonely Tower (10:57) Total : 62mins

Customer Reviews

3 star
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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, wonderful 70's prog! 2 Nov 2011
Format:Audio CD
I downloaded this album (Released in the USA on 25th October) from itunes and cannot stop playing it.

If you like 70's prog rock, espcially YES & Genesis, then you will love this new album from US Proggers "Glass Hammer". Loads of Hammond organ, thundering 'Chris Squire type' bass and wondeful guitar work from young guitarist Alan Shikoh - Add to that Jon Davidsons 'Anderson like' vocals and you have a great album full of fantastic soundscapes, soaring synths, complicated time signatures and what can only be described as 'classic' prog.

Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yes 24 April 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Yes I would really recommend this for fans of Yes and prog rock. Very well executed and produced prog rock style.
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4.0 out of 5 stars prooooooooooooooooooog 1 May 2014
By joker
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
this album is progressive music of high quality from Glass Hammer. I`d give it four and a half stars. if you could. there art work is also high quality if your a fan of lush keyboards or progressive rock than this album for you.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars 12 Aug 2014
Format:MP3 Download|Verified Purchase
Excellent prog rock at its best
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.4 out of 5 stars  23 reviews
27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars GH's Latest - The Yes Homage Continues 26 Oct 2011
By M. Pollack - Published on
Format:Audio CD
I've been on the Glass Hammer fan bandwagon for a several years now (since Lex Rex) - I legitimately own the vast majority of their catalog, which is probably rare these days. So when Cor Cordium was released I had an autographed CD in my mailbox on release day.

After the first listen, my reaction was "That's it?" Then I remembered that I had similar reactions to "Culture of Ascent" and "Shadowlands" (which I now love). So I took the time to listen again..........and again. While I still can't say I'm completely enamored by Cor Cordium, it is growing on me. But why is it taking longer this time?

Well, Glass Hammer has always "worn their influences on their sleeves" while carefully crafting their own sound - that's one aspect that draws prog-rock lovers to them. However, with Cor Cordium I can't help but feel they are trying to sound too much like Yes, and lose their Glass Hammer identity in the process. Maybe Jon Davison's vocals are too similar to that other Jon's to avoid direct comparisons, but when the music also mirrors Yes, it makes me feel a bit... weird. Check out the steel guitar/keyboard passage at the end of "She, A Lonely Tower" - think Yes' classic "Awaken". Then listen to parts of "One Heart" - think Yes' "Can You Imagine" from the Magnification album. See what I mean?

When I first listened to Glass Hammer's previous release ("If" - 2010) I thought it was pretty cool that parts sounded a lot like Yes. However, when I listen to "If" in combination with "Cor Cordium" I get the feeling I do when I listen to Jon Anderson's solo work - there's now just a bit too much of a good thing, and not enough balance (in this case, between the Yes and Glass Hammer sounds) for my taste. Glass Hammer have previously thanked their fans who "get it". Well, I thought I did but now I'm wondering if I really do. Maybe it's just that the homage to Yes has gone a bit too far for my own comfort? Or has Chris Squire really given Glass Hammer the Keys to the YesSound, so he can continue his Drama pursuits? (sorry if that sounds a bit snarky).

Having said this, Cor Cordium is a quality release with great things about it:
- The musicianship is stellar throughout. This quartet is as tight as any Glass Hammer assembled.
- The opening to "Nothing Box" is striking - gets right to the heart of what makes prog, well, rock.
- "Salvation Station" is an infectious, cartoon-ish (meaning fun) sounding tune - one of the best, and certainly most original, on the CD.
- "Dear Daddy" - again I can't help but draw comparisons to Yes' "Dear Father". But it's a heartfelt tune that will grow on you.

All in all, being compared to Yes is not a bad thing - many other bands strive, but fail, to be this good. Cor Cordium is definitely worth buying if you are already a Glass Hammer fan. If you are just discovering Glass Hammer, I would suggest picking up "If" (if you are also a Yes fan) or "Lex Rex"/"Chonometree" (to hear the epic Glass Hammer sound) before getting Cor Cordium.

I'm grateful for this new Glass Hammer release, and as always, look forward to the next.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Second Release of the Jon Davison Era 29 Oct 2011
By Paul Hodgetts - Published on
Format:Audio CD
To get this out of the way, if you don't like bands that have strong similarities to other legendary prog bands, in this case Yes, you can probably stop reading now and move on. I'm not going to dwell on this point much in this review.

I am a huge fan of If. I think the addition of Jon Davison (vocals), Alan Shikoh (guitar) and and Randall Williams (drums) rejuvenated the band after 2009's Three Cheers, which many consider their weakest effort, certainly the least in keeping with their ongoing prog stylings. Of course, the addition of Davison took them firmly into the realm of sounding a whole lot like that other aforementioned band, but as you'll see I don't view that as imitation or a negative. If they've taken on the Yes torch, they've certainly carried it further and to other interesting places.

From the opening notes of Nothing Box, it's very clear this is a symphonic prog album of epic proportions. If I had any questions of whether they would continue the trends of If, the first two tracks definitively removed any doubts there. But Cor Cordium isn't simply If, part two. Here we find this group coming together with a stronger band personality. Although Glass Hammer remains anchored by Fred Schendel and Steve Babb, both Davison and Shikoh seem stronger contributors than on If.

The compositions on Cor Cordium are very rooted in the classic symphonic prog style, with the layering of instruments, complex passages, nifty time signatures and epic themes aficionados will love. I find the balance to be more even on Cor Cordium, where If may have favored the keys and bass a bit. Here it seems every instrument and the vocals all contribute equally to the compositions. Songwriting credits are listed for all four of Babb, Schendel, Davison and Shikoh, and I'm guessing the mutual contributions are a key element of the evolution we hear between If and Cor Cordium.

But there are a few pleasant surprises as well. Salvation Station brings us a more serious social statement than the dominant ethereal peace, universal love and small infinities of If. And Dear Daddy is a very poignant expression of a difficult father-son relationship, sung so powerfully by Davison that I suspect it is his own personal story. Both of these tracks incorporate a more folky acoustic guitar-driven feel, in a proggy way of course. Dear Daddy adds some jazzier voicings to the guitar chords that give it a very intimate nightclub feel in places.

Overall, these are really good compositions, and after a dozen listenings they keep getting better as I discover more nuances and interplay in the songs. Every song goes somewhere and evolves, with all of the tracks over 5 minutes and four of the six tracks 10+ minute epics.

For the performances, we get the awesome keyboard work from Fred Schendel that we've come to expect. It's very worth it to take the time to listen to all the layers of keys in headphones, and to appreciate the intricacy of Fred's solos and rhythmic keyboard work as well. Fans of mellotrons will find some tasty tron work woven into the cuts (not sure if it's sampled or the real MkIV, but who cares?), as well as other vintage keys. Steve Babb remains an absolute monster on bass. He has a wonderful melodic style, not just anchoring the compositions, but driving them with strong themes. His bass sound will peel the paint off walls, with a huge bottom end and that trebly Rickenbacker element we all love (although I believe Steve primarily plays an Ibanez).

As I mentioned, I feel the addition of Jon Davison really transformed the band. I know he sounds uncannily like the other Jon. While he's obviously influenced by Anderson, and he admits being a huge Yes fan, I don't thinks he's being imitative. The tone and timber is his natural voice, and jeez, this guy can sing! His pitch is spot on, his range is excellent, and he brings inspiring emotion to the lyrics.

Alan Shikoh also seems to have upped his contribution on Cor Cordium. His guitar work on If was outstanding, and that continues here. But where on If it sounded like he was asked to play like Steve Howe, on Cor Cordium we find a much wider variety of guitar voicings and patches including some more contemporary sounds. His technical skills are on full display, and impressive. From the credits, it looks like several of the musicians contribute to the excellent acoustic guitar work found throughout.

Randall Williams rejoins on drums, although from the credits it looks like he's considered more of a hired gun. Nevertheless, his contribution seems foundational to the sound of both Cor Cordium and If. Very solid and technically skilled, with lots of great flourishes. Jeffrey Sick and Ed Davis add violin and viola on Dear Daddy.

The engineering and production quality of Cor Cordium continue the excellence of If. Every track is crystal clear, with full frequency response and dynamic range. This is definitely an album for audiophile headphones. I have to give a huge appreciation for the mastering. Where most CDs these days are mastered way too loud, over-compressed and often clipped to the point of distortion, Cor Cordium seems only mildly peak limited by a couple of db, which lets the awesome production and engineering shine through. Play this loudly and enjoy!

As you can tell, I love this album. I think, along with If, it's one of the best Glass Hammer albums. If you like If, I think you will also love Cor Cordium. If you like Glass Hammer, this is one to get. If you like symphonic prog in general, you really should check this out, especially if you're cool with bands like Starcastle that have strong similarities to Yes.

Excellent stuff! It's really too early to tell if Cor Cordium will stand the ultimate test of time and become a true masterpiece, so at this point I think something like 4.5 stars is more appropriate, but I'll round up to 5 stars under Amazon's rating system since "I love it". I suspect the Yes-imitator detractors will pull the rating of Cor Cordium down like they did with If, but considering it on its own merit, it's hard to conceive that Cor Cordium deserves to end up less than 4.5 average when all the reviews are added up.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of the Year 28 Oct 2011
By Tony Geron - Published on
Format:Audio CD
Glass Hammer, with their latest release of Cor Cordium, has defiantly done the impossible.

They created a follow-up to their monster hit album IF from 2010 with perhaps their finest work yet, and will hopefully leave any doubt behind regarding their status as one of the best progressive rock bands, period.

There have been numerous comparisons over the years, likening Glass Hammer to Yes, and there has been some merit to that, in my thinking, but perhaps that now is something inappropriate to use as a measuring stick. I love Yes, and they were my favorite band in High School, some seventy million years ago or so. Yes, in the last ten years, has produced nearly nothing, their latest offering an excellent album, to my tastes, but quite honestly, is nothing in comparison to IF, or now the special Cor Cordium album. I would wink and say, going back through both collections for both bands, Yes never sounded as good as Glass Hammer....

Lets look at what Cor Cordium has in store for you. The opening track is one called Nothingbox, a nice chunky prog number weighing in at just over ten minutes. It lures you in from the opening note, and once you hear those first strums of the guitar, the lazy but insistent tapestry of synth and keyboards weaving in, the commanding crunch of the bass, and Jon singing, the song just takes off. I've only listened five times so far, but it still may be my favorite track from the album... it is oh so difficult to make that distinction, when you have more goodies, like One Heart following right on the heels of the Nothingbox, and changing the rhythm and pace of the evolving landscape of sound that unfolds before you. Again there is magnificent playing on every level by Steve, Fred and Alan, their chemistry developed in the last album has matured like a fine wine, and they effortlessly glide together and apart, one accentuating the other.

Salvation Station follows, and evokes memories of the fun found in some earlier Glass Hammer albums, Lex Rex and the Middle Earth albums came to mind. The albums shortest tune, it grabs you immediately with it's boogie woogie funky prog and lyrics that have you smiling at their cleverness and fun.

Dear Daddy follows, another chunky ten plus minute tune, but this one again surprises you, and is a touching but strong song about a son and his relationship with his father.

On the heels of Dear Daddy comes the longest song and my second favorite, so far, song from the album, To Someone. Coming in at just over eighteen minutes, it the anchor of the album in a sense, not only from it's length, but from a musical perspective as well. A beautiful but definite Glass Hammer classic, it has all of the elements in it that has made me delirious about the band's music. The level of their collective song writing and playing continues to make this band a singular gift. This epic moves and flows, is filled with some artful but driving chords from Alan, Steve continues to throw out one thunderous bass run after another, and Fred comes swooping in with amazing organ, synthesizer and keyboard textures and parts, making this song one amazing ride musically.

The final song is one that also keeps sticking in my head after repeated listens, another left turn in beat and composition, and yet still going in the same direction, it closes out the album coming in at nearly eleven minutes, and is yet another song that evokes earlier Glass Hammer music to my ears, possibly Culture of Ascent's Into Thin Air.

Fred Schendel can no longer be compared to Rick Wakeman or Keith Emerson. Fred is a wizard of the keys, and is in my personal top three keyboard players in the world: Fred, Gem Godfrey of Frost, and Dream Theater's Jordan Rudess. I put Fred first, because I truly believe, after listening to now fourteen albums worth of his playing, that he is peerless. He makes every set of keys he touches, sing and soar like no other.

Steve Babb is a perfect partner for Fred, because his bass playing IS Glass Hammer as well. His distinctive, powerful, driving bass lines accentuate the music perfectly, and have helped to reduce my dashboard to a beaten drum for my fists as I drive along. Yeah, I beat it senseless with my enthusiasm and joy at hearing Steve's bass playing.

The inclusion of Alan Shikoh has helped to reveal yet another facet of the band. His riffs are fresh and perfect counterpoint for so many of the scintillating keyboard runs of Fred's. Both the acoustic and electric guitar playing is outstanding, and allowed the band to truly hone it's unique sound. Don't be surprised to hear lots more of Alan in the future, he is a young talent that can only get better, and that should have any music lover drooling.

Finally, but definitely not least, Jon Davison, brings it. It being that voice of his. Amazing. Yes, it sounds similar to Jon Anderson, in possibly the same way the new Yes singer does. Jon has the familiar smooth high end voice for rock and prog, but it's the soul behind the vocal chords that makes this Jon just as unique and special as that other Jon... His vocals and musical/lyrical contributions are what makes these last two albums complete, his energy is present in all of the songs and it's signature is what will make Jon Davison remembered for many years to come.

You must buy this album. You do not have any choice. Free will is an illusion. Prog music keeps getting better and better, and it's because of bands like Glass Hammer, leading the way with the most creative and incredible music being made today.

Get Cor Cordium, and prepare to lose yourself in the dream, as you get swept away on the wings of majestic and swirling masterpieces.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars YES They Are... BUT They Are SO Much More! 9 Jan 2012
By Steven L. Hirsch - Published on
Format:Audio CD
OK, this band would not be making this music if it weren't for YES. But I say -- Thank the Goddess! This IS the music YES should be making -- if they weren't so damn Buggling stubborn. Every time I hear Glass Hammer I smile. This being one of the best if not the best release of their career has got me ear to ear -- practically in a 'tripping' smile, so wide that your eyes go crosseyed. :-)

These guys just keep getting better and better -- and at this point... they have taken this kind of prog sound way farther than YES ever dared. I only suspected it after hearing "If", now it's confirmed; Glass Hammer is my favorite Prog band. They are having fun after all this time and that's admirable and infectious. This is great stuff.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just an imitation 11 Nov 2013
By D. Merrill - Published on
You'll find lots of comparisons to Yes here, but to be clear, think Classic Yes like the album Fragile, but you'll also find elements from albums all the way up to Tormato. But that's not all you'll find here. They also draw on sounds from Emerson Lake and Palmer and Kansas. But then there's a song like Dear Father that breaks its own ground. Don't make the mistake of thinking Glass Hammer are just cheap imitations of these bands. It takes a vast amount of talent to mesh all these influences into a beautifully coherent whole that transcends the sum of its parts. They do it brilliantly and make it sound easy. If you like Classic Yes and other Prog rock, don't miss this album or their previous outing If.
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