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June 2, 2009 | by  | in Music |
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Mercury Crowe—Set Your Mind to Fly

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Mercury Crowe are a straight-ahead rock band. They are straight ahead, though, not in that their songs lack inventiveness or freshness, but in the sense that they clearly just want to write good tunes. That’s it. That’s what they’re about. Don’t expect to see them in Mighty Mighty on a Saturday evening doodling away at a synthesiser while wearing stovepipe jeans or flairs, or whatever the hell it is those indie hipster kids wear these days. No, Mercury Crowe aren’t particularly keen on following trends, playing retro tunes or fitting in to any particular musical style; they simply want to write interesting, bluesy, memorable rock songs. And they are memorable; they’re damn good songs.

Set Your Mind to Fly is their second release and their first full album, their first recording being an eponymously titled EP, and the difference between the two releases is stark. Mercury Crowe was, to be fair, a perfectly enjoyable piece of music, but that’s about it. In the two years since its release, the band has played a whole lot of gigs (more than fifty in 2008 alone) and written a bunch of new songs, and they’ve certainly got their shit together. The weakest song on Set Your Mind to Fly beats the strongest from their first recording easily, while the best really hits the spot and then some. Stand-outs from the album include ‘Pandora’, a catchy-as-swine flu ballad that will get in your head and stay there, ‘When the Red Light’s Gone’ (with Ed Zuccollo of Harbour City Electric guesting on the organ, and the phenomenally prolific Lisa Tomlins on back-up vocals), and the damn fine ‘The Game.’

To be fair, not every track on the album is a king-hit winner. But, in order to write this review, I absolutely thrashed this CD for two days straight, and remarkably I’m not even close to putting it away on my shelf—I think it’ll be staying in my stereo for some time to come. This, I should perhaps mention, is unusual for me. In short, at the very least I suggest checking these young men out live when you get the opportunity (if this year’s gig schedule is anything like 2008’s this shouldn’t be a problem at all), or, better yet, grab a copy of their beautifully designed, screen-printed and hand-assembled new album.

Check the band out at mercurycrowe.com or their MySpace

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