[sic] Magazine

First Glances – Mercury Machine

Mercury Machine are less a band of their Manchester base and more one of a pan-European perspective that, post-Brexit, perhaps only exists only in the creative space. Sure, the five-piece pay appropriate homage to the rain-sodden post-punk of home (a recent cover of The Chameleons’ jangling “Swamp Thing” checking all the boxes), but their synth-driven scope targets much bigger and darker horizons. Yet it’s been a journey for Mercury Machine, and the destination is not yet fixed.

With a New Wave-leaning album already under their belts, and a new one due later in the year, the release of the Ascend EP on cassette via Ramber Records cements the band’s stadium-sized Goth-rock of old and so too pushes an industrial, cyber-flavoured strain of paranoia popular in the late 80s/early 90s. With more hooks than an angler’s tackle box, Ascend in massive and yet still eager to stomp on the pedals to ratchet up the oppressive atmosphere at every opportunity.

The spectre of NIN is inevitably never far away, equally the cold compressions of darkwave on more nuanced new single “Second Life”. Stuffed with riffs and reverb, EP highlight “This Calling” is full-frontal in comparison, snares and synth gloom swelling both the ears and heart. Mercury is liquid at room temperature and it courses through Ascend like blood, a calculating machine capable of emotion if not empathy. Expect an uprising.

Mercury Machine are Lee Maguire (composer, vocals and guitar), Carl Street (bass and vocals), Kade Daniels (keyboards), Tim Burge (lead guitar), and Gav Foley (drums).

~The Ascend EP is released on cassette September 16th via Ramber Records.~