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Glad - 1978 Glad



ARTIST: Glad
ALBUM: Glad
LABEL: Myrhh
SERIAL: MSB-6603
YEAR: 1978

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Ed Nalle - guitar, lead vocals * Bob Kauflin - keyboards * John Bolles - lead guitar * Don Nalle - bass, vocals * Brad Currie - drums, percussion, vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 All Things * 02 Ephesus * 03 Rely On Your Love * 04 Love That Never Dies * 05 Master Of Us All * 06 So Hard Alone * 07 Trilogy: Three Voices a) I Am b) Fall On Me c) Lord Of Life * 08 Psalm 121

WEBLINKS: www.glad-pro.com


Background
Dodgy name for a rock band isn't it - Glad? I remember seeing this, their debut LP when it first came out and really laughed out loud, arrogantly shaking my head in disbelief. The name alone exemplified everything I disliked about Christian rock at the time and never gave it another thought with more 'important' bands ready for my dollars and attention. Well more fool me, finding a copy a few years later in a discount bin and older and wiser, bought it and later beat myself up for being such a music snob. By that time, Glad had become one of CCM's biggest bands and I had some serious catching up to do with their 1980 follow-up 'Beyond A Star', 1982's 'Captured In Time' and the excellent 'No Less Than All' released in 1983.


The Songs
Formed at West Chester University in suburban Philadelphia sometime in the early 70s, Glad started out as a Christian progressive rock band and some of that influence can be heard here amidst superb west coast influenced pop. Steely Dan is a good point of reference, but it's Ambrosia and their first three albums that Glad seem to have an unspoken kinship. The playing throughout the album is excellent and the tasty mixture of jazz and stylish pop stands up with some of the better known and lauded 'golden age' west coast releases. Glad show plenty of promise with the opening chords of 'All Things', while 'Ephesus' displays their proggy roots with stabbing keys and guitar work. The vocal arrangements on 'Rely On Your Love' and the Ambrosia styled pomp of 'Love That Never Dies' are something to behold, although to be clear, lyrically Glad have never been afraid of pronouncing their faith and this is especially so on 'Master Of Us All' with a title that should leave no doubt where their hearts are. The album's cornerstone comes in side two's multi-movement 'Trilogy: Three Voices' and it's here where the Ambrosia influence is at it's most prevalent. A prog rock tour-de-force without the bombast, it's as good as anything found on 'Somewhere I've Never Traveled' leaving me to wonder what Glad pre-record contract sounded like and if any early material exists.


In Summary
As the '80s wore on, Glad moved further into straight AOR/hi-tech territory only to do a complete one-eighty by releasing a series of acappella albums of little interest to this reviewer. They are still around today and have become a CCM institution, although their last studio album came out in 2005. Check out their first four platters and prepare to be delighted.


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Comments
#1 | johnnyb on December 03 2010 00:02:09
Thanks for your kind words about Glad's first album and the Trilogy. Pre-record contract Glad was a mixed bag. When we started out, we really didn't know what we were doing and did covers. Eventually we started writing our own songs. We recorded a 45 single at an 8-track studio in New Jersey that had a medley of New World and Born Again on one side, and one of Bob Kauflin's tunes, Seek Love, on the other side. We recorded demos here and there. By the time we graduated college, we were almost exclusively original material and original treatments of covers, and actively working toward getting a record deal. We struck up an arrangement with a studio in Lancaster, PA, called the King's Place; we did jingles and project albums for them in exchange for studio time, which we used to record our demo. The cornerstone of the demo was "Master of Us All" which in some ways sounded better than the album version. And the timing was right at Word records, and we got the deal!
#2 | Eric on December 03 2010 13:12:26
Wow! Thanks for the info John!
#3 | johnnyb on December 03 2010 14:52:04
You're entirely welcome! I should clarify, Bob Kauflin was already an excellent songwriter (I can think of a couple of his early songs that would absolutely blow you away - 17 years old!) when he became a member of Glad, and I had dabbled in songwriting by that point. We came to the band project with our own strong musical backgrounds, and I think that first album reflects the wide variety of musical influences present. It was through the process of trying to work together on our own material that those influences began to forge a style. We never thought of ourselves as a "progressive" rock band, per se; it was just that our particular mixture of influences happened to coincide with those used by prog rock bands of the period.
#4 | Eric on December 04 2010 01:16:41
Those first two albums are brilliant-truly. What's the story behind your departure from Glad?
#5 | johnnyb on December 07 2010 17:54:19
Oooohhhh, let's just say it wasn't a fit. The last year, in particular, I was having a hard time being on the road. I got married in October of 1978 and didn't see much of my wife that first year. I was starting to want to put down roots.
#6 | gdazegod on April 11 2016 00:54:07
I am having a catch up with the Glad discography. More reviews to follow, have two in the pipeline as it is.. computer work
 
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