About The Mercury Seed
New York, NY
If overcoming adversity builds character, The Mercury Seed have built enough to be reincarnated as Abe Lincoln. In the months leading up to the 2007 release of Throwing Rocks At The Sun, the five-piece New York area band endured frustrating recording delays as well as an inferno that torched a practice space housing many of the band’s prized instruments. But determination prevailed over simple circumstance, and the new collection of songs emerged stronger for the experience. As the incendiary tracks on Sun attest, never — never —underestimate a band with something to prove.
“We really owed it to each other to raise our game on this record,” says lead singer Volker. “Plus, we had been performing some of these songs live and I think that’s why this record sounds more confident than our last.” Guitarist John Jackson adds, “Instead of doing straight live renditions of each song, we spent more time adding layers and textures. Listening back, it sounds like time well spent.”
Over several months during 2006, The Mercury Seed traveled Boston to track the bulk of Rocks in a recording studio near Fenway Park. The process, while ultimately successful, was unusually challenging. The band bested white-out snowstorms, rats the size of small circus animals and a nail-biting race with the clock. Not only that, working at top speed to finish recording before the studio’s eviction notice kicked in added an unexpected sense of urgency to the songs.
America is thirsty for melodic, well-written guitar-fueled rock. They need a tall drink of The Mercury Seed. Hitting new songwriting highs with Throwing Rocks At The Sun, the band knocked out a head-to-toe winner.
Emotionally charged and passionately played, the disc takes listeners on a hook-filled rollercoaster ride. While searing, soaring guitars dominate the swaggering “Under The Radar,” the track’s plaintive, stick-in-your-head lyrics seal the deal: “Feeling alone in a crowded room/Holding the words that get you through/Ghost of a past that’s chained to you.”
Another song garnering heaps of fan and critical attention is the heart-on-its-sleeve “Liferaft.” An obvious emphasis track with its captivating rescue-me message, listeners can almost imagine the swelling song’s key role in a future movie scene.
And, when the Seed turns up the heat, as they do on the driving lead track “This Time” and the power-riffing “Start Again,” it’s clear the band knows when to let the amps do the talking.
Having built a loyal fan base while honing their live act at such Manhattan haunts as The Knitting Factory, Arlene’s Grocery, Mercury Lounge, Sin-é and Crash Mansion, The Mercury Seed expanded its audience in 2006 after being selected by XM Radio to open for Bon Jovi at Mohegan Sun Arena before 15,000 fans. That same year, The Mercury Seed also played at Toronto’s NXNE festival and made the finals in the international Emergenza Music Festival.
They’ve since made fans out of strangers and converts out of non-believers. Anthony DeCurtis, Contributing Editor at Rolling Stone, said of the Seed, “These guys are true believers who play it and mean it from the depths of their souls.” The Mercury Seed continues to give an original spin to the time-honored two-guitars-bass-and-drums lineup. Previous releases include an eponymous debut and Dust. The band also contributed “The Great Big No” to the 2006 Lemonheads tribute CD Squealing Fans In My Tune.