The Mercury Program

The Mercury Program

The Mercury Program

Boxcar

There’s a subtle tension that runs through this record, like the feeling you get when you’re anticipating part of a song that just explodes and sends you bouncing off the walls. It’s not always the rock-your-socks-off parts that make for beautiful musical moments like this, but the buildup, or the breakdown, to put it in musical terms.

The Mercury Program live in the breakdown: a world of simple guitar melodies, forward-moving rhythms, and sparse, spoken vocals. They achieve with understatement what many indie rock bands fail to do with gratuitous power, and that’s simply to grab your ear. That’s not to say that this record doesn’t rock. “This Hits Home” lets loose and makes me wish that the vocalist belted it out like this a bit more. And I’m sure the drummer goes through his fair share of snare skins.

But the overall effect is laid back, especially for someone who is used to listening to punk and indie rock. I imagine most Mercury Program fans would fall into this category. I can’t help but draw a comparison to Slint. If you like Slint, or any other low-key indie rock that I definitely recommend checking out the Mercury Program.

Boxcar Records, P.O. Box 1141, Melbourne, FL 32902; http://www.boxcarrecords.com

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