Search - Mercury Rev :: Boces

Mercury Rev
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1

The band varies its usual krautrock groove (a mechanically precise drumbeat called motorik meant to evoke driving on the autobahn) by injecting stretches of quiet flute noodling and free jazz wanking. Mercury Rev is most e...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Mercury Rev
Title: Boces
Members Wishing: 2
Total Copies: 0
Label: Sony
Release Date: 6/1/1993
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Styles: Indie & Lo-Fi, American Alternative
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 074645321721

The band varies its usual krautrock groove (a mechanically precise drumbeat called motorik meant to evoke driving on the autobahn) by injecting stretches of quiet flute noodling and free jazz wanking. Mercury Rev is most effective when frontman David Baker (a slacker version of Pere Ubu's David Thomas) mumbles and screeches behind guitarists Grasshopper and Jonathan Donahue's white-noise assaults, as on "Trickle Down" and "Bronx Cheer." Unfocused tunes such as "Bottom's Up" and "Girlfren" (not the Jonathan Richman song) are worse than headache-inducing; they're boring. --Jim DeRogatis

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CD Reviews

The best album in history!
Chastaine Keaton | Cincinnati, OH United States | 06/22/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The 2nd LP from Mercury Rev is a masterpiece! This is an essential album for any serious music collector to own. Boces is far different than anything that was out in its time. From the opening track Meth of a Rockette's Kick, (a 10+ minute opus that starts off with peaceful strumming of acoustic guitar and nice french horn playing then crashes into oblivion with walls of feedback over pretty female vocalings then delves into free form jazz featuring tuba and piano then ends on total freakout), to the closing acid lounge of Girlfren, each song on this album gets more and more enjoyable after each listen. First time you hear it, you'll be like "huh?". After about 5 listens it'll start to grab you and then slowly suck you in. Once you've heard it 20 times, you realize everything you've been listening to for all these years is pure junk."
The Zenith of Mercury Rev
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Yerself Is Steam, Mercury Rev's stunning debut is the basis of Boces. While Yerself Is Steam was a neo-psychedelic, kaleidoscopic mess of styles, unrivalled genius and ear-splitting noise, Boces is the more pop-oriented of these two yet still defiantly experimental. The mind-bending opener "Meth of a Rockette's Kick" goes through sudden volume changes, wordless choirs, brilliantly inane lyrics and a glorious noisy solo and one of the most excruciatingly loud noises ever, suddenly turning into a brass-section filled oddity before crashing into a monstrous wall of noise clearly shows that this band knew no boundaries of creativity. Even more brutal noise is explored on the utterly brilliant "Trickle Down" that ends with the most brutal instrumental noise I've ever come across to. But Boces is not short of the most astonishing pop songs you'll ever hear. "Bronx Cheer" is the most heavenly slice of noise pop, or any kind of pop to be honest, I've ever come across to. I'm the owner of about 800 cds so this should say quite a lot. "Something For Joey" is a magnificent sunny feedback-drenched pop tune highlighted by Chambers' sublime drum work and Thorpe's flute, and in spite of David Baker's departure, the lyrical content of "Hi-Speed Boats" gives a slight hint to where the group was heading after the singer's departure, while "Downs are Feminine Balloons" hints the same territory to arrive with its quieter approach. One of the most important things why I rate Boces higher than Yerself Is Steam is that while remaining wildly unpredictable, the group manages to expand their sound drastically. "Boys Peel Out" is a dreamy jazz number and the 11-minute swirling quasi-metal song "Snorry Mouth" is slightly reminiscent of Spacemen 3's longer noise excursions. The closer is of acquired taste however. "Girlfren" is an acid jazz number that you will find hilarious or downright boring. With any sense of humour you'll probably see the joke, but it's indisputable that "Very Sleepy Rivers" off of Yerself Is Steam was a much better album closer. So, if you know Deserter's Songs or All Is Dream, the pure noise scattered across Boces might come as a shock to you. But once you've recovered you might find yourself thinking that this is the best album Mercury Rev have yet released, and as they've moved away from noisy transcendence into the field of symphonic grandeur, Boces will probably always be one of a kind, and to me it is the greatest album ever released. Just approach the album with an open mind if you are not familiar with what it might sound like!"
Wonderful chaos!
Chris Carter | my music room | 11/12/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I'm not quite sure what the difference is between the domestic version and the import version of this CD ($, maybe), but I'm just gonna review the music - I think that's more important.

Mercury Rev has been getting a lot more attention these days, and I'm not sure that it's helped their music. I've heard just a little bit from All Is Dream and The Secret Migration, and it seems to me they've become too self-conscious, too narrow, with the slow tempos and grandiose backdrops and whatnot. Don't get me wrong - some of their later music can be beautiful, but I prefer this CD. There's really not another album like this, not from this band or any other. Fantastic songs that are performed with true psychedelic edginess! It's mind-blowing, honestly, all the wacked sounds and the crazy courage that obviously went into making this record as breathtaking and as insane as it is. There are more tranquil moments, too, but even these are weird - Boys Peel Out, with its acid dream jazz sound, and the brow-furrowing final song, GirlFren. Obscenely alive, to borrow a Lester Bangs phrase. Beautifully noisy and surreal. I like See You On the Other Side (and the cover is one of my favorite covers EVER BY ANYONE), but it's obvious they became more tame after this."