Prog Archives Review

UK Neo Prog band from Durham, formed in 1978 as Contraband and based around guitarist John Youdale.They soon changed their name to Glass Ear and then to Glacier, but the band called it off one day in the 80’s after the numerous line-up changes and the disappointment of being underappreciated by record companies due to their sound.In mid-90’s though Glacier and John Youdale returned with Bob Mulvey on bass, female singer Heather Davies, Peter Cornforth on keys and Graeme Ash on drums.The late 90’s found Glacier working on old and new songs, which were completed with Dave Kidson on keys and new singer Dave Birdsall, who was also a member of the early days of the band.The compilation ”Monument” came out in 2001 as a self-produced CD.

Glacier played typical British Neo Progressive Rock along the lines of JADIS, IQ and ABEL GANZ with strong emphasis on the catchy melodies, the sensitive vocals and the careful keyboard textures.All tracks are well-crafted, pretty memorable and very melodic with some nice guitar solos, easy-going choruses and synth explorations, while the longer ones contain also some space for instrumental soundscapes of symphonic nature, which are pretty good.The atmosphere ranges from pleasant tunes to dramatic lyrical moments, surrounded by more grandiose musicianship and will please all fans of the genre.The vocals of Birdsall are warm, while previous singer Heather Davies appears also in a few tracks.On the other hand it is certain that the overall performance sounds pretty safe despite the hidden potential, while a few tracks are closer to Melodic Rock than even Neo Prog.Still the good arrangements will make the listener overcome these minor flaws.

Glacier’s unlucky incidents continued after the release, as the band had suffered again from constant line-up shakes, while the major content of a second album was almost ready.Hopefully the new material officially sees the light someday.

Pretty good work for all fans of 80’s British Prog, Neo Prog or light Symphonic Prog.Melodic and very intense at moments.Recommended.

Prog Archives 2012

Review by Apostolis (APPS79)

Original review HERE