Glass Hammer is a progressive rock band from Chattanooga, Tennessee. They formed in 1992 when multi-instrumentalists Steve Babb (then known as "Stephen DeArqe") and Fred Sche N del began to write and record Journey of the Dunadan, a concept album based on the story of Aragorn from J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. To their surprise, the A lbum sold several thousand units via the Internet, TV home shopping, and phone orders, and Babb and Schendel were convinced that the band was a project worth continuing.
While many musi C ians have appeared on Glass Hammer albums over the years, Babb and Schendel have remained the core of the band. Both men play a variety of instruments, but Babb mainly concentrates on bass guitar and keyboards while Schendel also plays keyb O ards as well as various guitars and drums (until the addition of live drummer Matt Mendians to the studio recording band in 2004). They also sing, although a number of other vocalists (most notably Michelle Young, Walter Moore and Susie Bogdanowicz) have also ha N dled lead vocal duties.
Lyrically, Glass Hammer is inspired mostly by their love of fantasy literature (most notably Tolkien and C. S. Lewis) and by th E ir Christian faith. Although by their own admission they have tried to avoid becoming an overtly Christian band, their 2002 release Lex Rex was a concept album ba S ed on a Roman soldier's encounter with Jesus.
Musically, their most apparent influences are Yes, K ansas, Emerson, Lake & Palmer and, to a less noticeable extent, Genesis. While Glass Hammer has, for the most part, combined those influences into a characteristic style of the I r own, they made much more direct references to the aforementioned bands on their 2000 album Chronometree, which told the story of a drug-addled progressive rock fan who becomes convinced aliens are speaking to him through the music he listens to.
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