Crimson Glory Biography
Crimson Glory is a progressive metal band from the United States. Crimson Glory began life in Sarasota, Florida in 1982 under the moniker 'Beowulf'. They rehearsed diligently, finding and developing their sound for almost four years before recording their self-titled debut album on Par Records in 1986. Tight harmonies and soaring vocals would feature prominently on this release, and the album included the haunting track, “Lost Reflection”. In an era of sound and look-alike metal bands, Crimson Glory wished to have themselves be immediately identifiable from the rest, so they wore full-face metallic silver masks on-stage (and for all photo shoots and public appearances as well). Quite obviously, the mystically-named vocalist Midnight was the exception to this, as his mask left his mouth uncovered. Their second release, “Transcendence” was a landmark and it garnered them much-deserved praise and attention, both at home and abroad. They had also discovered how hot the masks would be, so to keep the mystique, they cut them down into a “Phantom of the Opera” style. (After the tour, the masks would be retired.) After this album’s release, they performed at the 1989 Tampa Bay Music Awards and walked away with three awards that night – Most Outstanding Male Vocalist, Most Outstanding Local Release and Most Outstanding Metal Band (beating out the almighty Savatage for this one). It was after this tour that drummer Dana Burnell and guitarist Ben Jackson left the group. Together, they would go on to form the group Parish, who released their first and only album, “Envision” in 1995, after which, the band dissolved. Dana would be replaced by Ravi Jahkotia, who brought a more “tribal” feel to the band and the new material they would write was based more on drum grooves as opposed to guitar riffs, which their first two albums were largely based on. It signified a bold and definite shift away from the metal sound the band had built their reputation on and it was at this time the band continued on as a four-piece. They were signed to Atlantic Records and released their third album, “Strange and Beautiful”. Prior to the start of the tour, vocalist Midnight departed as well, dropping into a self-imposed exile for almost a decade before anyone heard from him again. Guitarist Jon Drenning would move the band to Arizona and regroup the band twice, first as ‘Crush', and then as 'Erotic Liquid Culture’. They would release one album under each name. Both albums are out of print and much sought-after by long-time fans. Moving back in Florida, and after an almost five year hiatus, Jon Drenning regrouped Crimson Glory. He welcomed Ben Jackson back into the band and found a replacement for Midnight in the form of Wade Black. This incarnation of the group would release “Astronomica” and following a brief tour, would go on hiatus again. Ben Jackson and Midnight have since busied themselves with solo careers in the interim. Answering the demand of the fan base (affectionately known as the ‘Crimson Militia’), Drenning has successfully reunited all the original members: vocalist Midnight, guitarist Ben Jackson, bassist Jeff Lords and after much secrecy and to the delight of the fans, drummer Dana Burnell. A surprising addition has been the inclusion of former Astronomica tour drummer Jesse Rojas, now backing up the group in live performances on percussion and some lead vocal work. The reunion promises many more surprises. Beginning with a series of live performances at various European festivals, followed by re-mastered reissues of the 1986 self-titled debut, 1988’s "Transcendence" and 1999’s "Astronomica". All will contain previously unreleased tracks, including re-recorded vocal tracks by Midnight on Astronomica (which was written with him in mind singing in the first place), an anthology box set entitled “Valley of Shadows, Kingdoms of Light” and DVD of a 1989 concert at the Manatee Civic Center. 2007 promises the first new release with all the original members since 1988, tentatively titled “Metatron, Lucifer and the Divine Chaos”. On July 8 former Crimson Glory frontman Midnight passed away from "total kidney and liver failure." He was 47 years old.