Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Mercury Program - 2000 - From the Vapor of Gasoline

The Mercury Program
From the Vapor of Gasoline
Recording Date: Jan-Feb 2000
Release Date: May 2000
Time: 43:25
Label: Tiger Style


"A post-rock album that doesn't sound like Sonic Youth B-sides. Florida-based the Mercury Program tempt their chin-stroking muses by creating a collection of songs that use the seemingly conventional setup of rock clich├ęs (guitar solos, mumbling vocals, etc.), but they also embrace the more free-form patterns of experimental jazz. The good information is that unlike most post-rock contemporaries, the "feedback squalls = artistic" belief is kept at a minimum. The bad information is that it still rarely succeeds. For example, the track listing reads like a series of in-jokes ("Down on Your Old Lung" is a highlight), the loose structures start to chafe, and the whole experiment feels too much in love with itself to connect with an audience. However, even the most antagonistic of listeners would be hard-pressed to dismiss the hovering interest of the album's title track or the engaging murmur of the finale "Highways Like Veins." It's just that, more often than not, the album sounds like cerebral intentions gone awry. Like most American experimentalists, the hope is that the band tends to hone in on their true musical character somewhere down the line. Because as it stands, From the Vapor of Gasoline comes across like music theory students trying to impress their professors." ~AMG


01 The Sea Is in Here
02 Re-Inventing a Challenge for Machines
03 Leaving Capitol City for Good
04 Nazca Lines of Peru
05 Every Particle of the Atmosphere
06 From the Vapor of Gasoline
07 Fastest Way Through the South
08 Down on Your Old Lung
09 The Vortex East
10 Highways Like Veins