Album – Hourglass – Mercer

Posted by admin on February 17th, 2007

I just love the way this album begins, with the track “Bruise”. A lilting piano melody with equally mellow lyrics, that really ease you in. What’s unusual about this track is that it would have sat well at either the end of the album. Everything about this album, screams a certain level of comfort. The vocals and melodies are relatively simple, but they gel together so well. “Nice to Meet You” is another case in point. It just reeks of elegant simplicity. There’s sometimes a lot of temptation to cram as much into an album as you can, but this cramming of quantity, does nothing to improve an albums quality and can sometimes lead to an over produced cacophony of noise. This isn’t a concern here.

The title track has a strange feel to it. When I say that, what I actually mean, is that it possesses a strange quality. It’s one of those tracks that seems to last forever. It’s only a tad over 3 minutes and 30 seconds, but there’s something about it that just seems to go on forever. It’s not a bad track by any means, but it’s strangely hypnotic. “The Other Side” also possesses some of these qualities, but again it’s in no way a criticism.

That wonderful piano returns again for the track “Indiscretion”, which is one of my favorite tracks on the album. There’s just somethings I’m a sucker for, this style of piano, mellow acoustic guitar and stellar female vocals are among them. “The Payback” begins well, but takes a bit of a swan dive. I was really getting into this track until the vocals started I’m not sure if it’s the words or delivery, but there’s something about this track that feels like two songs bodged together, which is a shame. “92” is another track that starts with great promise and actually delivers.

I’m a strong believer in opening and closing an album strongly. Whilst the album does open strongly I felt that the final 2 tracks “Last Hello” and “In the End” should have been switched. Personal preference, but the “Last Hello” just has the right mood to close off with.

Conclusion : This very much an album of the time. A very contemporary sound, but with an underlying maturity that is just a pleasure to listen to.

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