Edison Glass, the hypothetical collaboration of Thomas Alva Edison and composer Philip Glass, formed in 1999 when Joshua Silverberg (singer/guitar), brothers Joe (drums) and Mountain (singer/bass) Morin, and James Usher (guitar) came together for a singular cause - making rock music for the kids.
Music for the kids with short attention spans as well as the vinyl and mix-tape graduates.
Each member of the Long Island band found music to be their creative outlet at an early age. While some in the band began piano lessons at around the age of 8 years old, Silverberg penned his first song in kindergarten. Being stuck in piano lessons at the same time you are forming a band means that you have dabbled in everything from Nirvana covers to Bach, from complex orchestral arrangements to the murkiest depths of punk rock. Drawing from a soup of Indie rock, smart pop and classical influences, Edison Glass has developed a sound that, while akin to The Police and The Mars Volta, is very much all their own. After all, being in a band was never about being cool; creating music has always been a necessary outlet. “It’s like breathing, if don’t I will die,” Silverberg talks of the bands dedication to their art. “It’s burning inside and it needs to come out. To me, composition, and creative thinking is absolutely essential.”
Back in the winter of 2004 the band’s Credential A&R guy sent a cd out to Smashing Pumpkins and Sunny Day Real Estate producer Brad Wood, who was impressed with the sound of the early demos. As fans of SDRE and other Wood-produced projects, the band jumped at the chance to record with Wood in Los Angeles. Before moving into a hotel room for the last couple of weeks of recording, the band spent their nights in their converted school bus parked behind a Jack in the Box near Wood’s North Hollywood home studio. The accommodations didn’t seem to hurt. "I am floored by the energy that Edison Glass puts out- manic drums and bass, two singers in full voice.” Wood continues, “They love what they do and it shows. It was a thrill to try and catch it all on record.”
Highlights abound on the record, from the driving energy-sopped choruses of “Forever,” to the weighty measured intensity of “This House,” at times there are both lush pop orchestration and complete Devo-esque breakdowns in the same song and it works masterfully. The first four tracks alone reveal a group capable of almost anything sonically imagined. And while the band has spent a substantial amount of time in do-it-yourself studios creating their music and is comfortable behind the boards, an Edison Glass live performance is not to be missed. Immobilized by the visceral sense of life and authenticity that comes blaring through the speakers, onlookers enjoy a show that is equal parts exhibition and experience. On playing live Usher adds, “When I’m performing I get to be someone I can’t be anywhere else. I can be wild, I can dance, and I can scream as loud as I want and no one can hear. It’s cathartic.”
After seven years of constant writing, recording and playing basement shows for friends, Edison Glass release their debut A Burn or a Shiver on Credential Recordings in the spring of 2006. 13 songs built around tight rhythms, intricate guitar lines, dueling lead vocals, A Burn or a Shiver, is as dizzying and frenetic as rock can be. But still there amidst the chaos is the focused and well articulated musicianship that makes rock and roll compelling in the first place.