The Mercury Program – All the Suits Began to Fall Off EP

The Mercury Program
All the Suits Began to Fall Off EP

It’s hard to imagine that The Mercury Program hails from the area of Florida known for its punk/hardcore bands like Hot Water Music and As Friends Rust. Even harder to imagine that fans of that louder style of rock could take to this band, which is so intrinsically different. Yet The Mercury Program have found fans by touring with Tristeza, Fin Fang Foom, Engine Down, and others, and I, for one, find their approach to music wholly refreshing.
This Gainesville quartet plays lovely instrumental pieces that bridge the gap between melodic indie rock, post-rock, and even influences of jazz and math-rock. While doing so, they don’t fall into the pretty but too quiet or droning segment, instead playing very flowing and rocking tracks that show off their talents. The perfect blurring of the slightly jazzy guitar, the powerful and intricate beats, the throbbing and moving bass, and vibraphone and electric piano make some very interesting pieces for sure.
This album kicks off with “The Secret to Quiet,” which is not really quiet. The use of vibraphone lends a kind of otherworldliness to this flowing, beat-driven track. “There are Thousands Sleeping in Peace” is more peaceful than its predecessor, with the drums and guitar loops blending perfectly and lead by vibraphone and electric piano that create a swirling, spell-binding effect. The band does let loose with blasts of electric guitar and intensity, however. The lengthy “Marianas” is more melodic and organic with more jazzy undertones and a kind of quiet urgency. There’s something of a math-rocky feel to the complex rhythms and the interplay between guitar and bass and the percussion on “Undiscovered Genius of the Mississippi Delta,” and the closer, “A Delicate Answer,” has a kind of haunting ambience throughout. This track is quiet and much more restrained, with a steady and subtle flow throughout.
Despite being only five songs, this EP is 30 minutes long, making it worthy of a full-length. The Mercury Program use these five tracks to show their constant improving, even from last year’s impressive From the Vapor of Gasoline. Their sound continues to improve and tighten, making The Mercury Program a constant surprise. These songs are tight and precise, flowing yet intense. Wonderful stuff.