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Mercury Rev's The Secret Migration.

For the last couple of days, I've been listening to Mercury Rev's new album, the Secret Migration. Except to have the tracks to be dumped into my ipod, it hasn't left the stereo.

It is, without a doubt, a beautiful album. I never thought I would say this, to be honest, as frontman Jonathan Donahue has always sounded a bit too similar to Wayne Coyne, the frontman for the Flaming Lips. I like the Flaming Lips, but beautiful is not the word to describe Coyne's vocals or the band. Indeed, there was always a chance that Mercury Rev would still sound similar to the Flaming Lips, and the Secret Migration and the Flaming Lips' last album, the excellent Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, both featured the producer Dave Fridmann. But whether it's Fridmann or just each bands growth into new areas, it's difficult now to make the comparison between the two now.

The Secret Migration is a dark, beautiful album about belief and love and devotion to the two. The images that stick in your head after the first spin are of dark country brides, white horses, and angels. With the second and third, those images grow with the the music which, it seems to me, is perfect for dusk, where everything between the afternoon and the night is quietly unwinding and the sky is filtered orange and you're in a tranquil place.

The moment before you begin again.

Comments

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ex_benpayne119
Mar. 3rd, 2005 07:56 am (UTC)
I just bought it... haven't really listened to it yet... I heard a few people comment in past years on the similarities between Flaming Lips and Mercury Rev... (and Grandaddy too)... I think mainly because of the vocals, and the adventurous orchestral flourishes... but I think the comparison's overdone... I don't think they're that similar at all...

anyway, looking forward to getting into it...

benpeek
Mar. 3rd, 2005 11:39 pm (UTC)
it was the flaming lips SOFT BULLETEN album that did it for me. i can't remember what mercury rev i was hearing then (THE SECRET MIGRATION is the first album i own) but it was around the time of that lips album, and i reckon theys ounded a bit similar.

but yeah, it's overdone.
coalescent
Mar. 3rd, 2005 10:29 am (UTC)
I agree completely (and I could listen to 'Vermillion' in particular on loop for hours at a time...)
benpeek
Mar. 3rd, 2005 11:42 pm (UTC)
i think my favourite is 'secret for a song'. that line about the dark country bride just really works on me. i love it.
coalescent
Mar. 4th, 2005 02:44 pm (UTC)
Yes, that's a great line.

I think maybe because of the weather when I first heard it--clear, crisp late winter's day, the first spring flowers just starting to appear--I'm always going to think of it as a springtime album rather than a dusk album, though.
benpeek
Mar. 5th, 2005 03:48 am (UTC)
i could see how you would think that. it's quite apt, i think.
(Anonymous)
Mar. 4th, 2005 04:22 am (UTC)
If I remember correctly both Jonathon and Wayne were involved in a band of sorts long in their early days of playing drug-fuelled punk in New York. So that might explain the similarities. Or not.

Anyway, you still at UNSW doing your tutor gig? I just had my linguistics lecturer bitch on about how the Arts faculty is basically being extremely scrooge-like with everything.

smell you later,

john (sickbobby.blogspot.com)
benpeek
Mar. 4th, 2005 05:13 am (UTC)
yeah, that might explain it.

anyhow, i'm not tutoring out there this semester. i'm trying to finish my thesis this year (well, it has to be finished) so i had to give up one of the tutoring gigs. that was the uni one. pay is good, but there's not enough of it, and the arts faculty has always been scrooge like with their cash. possibly cause most of it goes to science.

i thought you were finished, anyhow?
(Anonymous)
Mar. 5th, 2005 01:47 am (UTC)
no i've still got one more session left

its a double edged sword: another half year with jerks or half year left hiding from the world. sigh, you can never win
benpeek
Mar. 5th, 2005 03:48 am (UTC)
i know the feeling well. at the end of this year, i'm gone.
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