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Mercury Rain - St. Matthieu (Reissue)

Mercury Rain
St. Matthieu (Reissue)
by Marcos "Big Daddy" Garcia at 01 July 2017, 11:33 AM

Due some ideals that I really don’t know (yes, I admit my lack of attention in some matters in these times), a lot of albums are being re-released with a remastering and some bonus material. The main question that I have: what is the main reason for that? I believe that time gave its sentence, that it has chosen those albums to be buried in nameless graves under the sands of time (although some albums that are successful need to follow the same trend). But in a few cases, there are bands that deserve to be heard by new generations of Metalheads. I believe that MERCURY RAIN is one of them, because the album “St. Matthieu” is really very good.

This quintet from Bristol, on England (UK) follows a particular way into what some called Gothic Metal. It’s really very good, done with fine guitar riffs with nasty tunes, excellent vocals, a solid work from bass guitar and drums, and fine keyboards parts. Of course, it can sound as nothing new at all to our ears, but it is done with personality, has that essential dose of energy that holds our attention to their work. The producer of “St. Matthieu” is Jon Hoare (bassists and keyboardist of the band), and he did a fine work on the original session. Although the sound is a bit rawer than the necessary, we can hear all the songs and understand what the band is playing as well as it has the necessary dose of musical weight. But this remastered edition gained weight and sound volume, so it is really fine. The redesigned artwork of Sam Giles is really amazing as well.

Some guests are giving a special taste to some songs: Chris Neighbour made some vocals and Steve Williams made additional keyboards parts on “The Messenger”, Filton Male Voice Choir is present on “Sanctuary” and “St. Matthieu”, and Andy Pester played additional keyboards and arrangements on “Sortlileges”.

The original version of the album had nine songs, but this new release has 15, all of them very good. Three of them (the good ones “The City of Ys”, “Bride of the Dark” and “The Boat of the Dead”, filled with fine vocals) are from their album “Dark Waters”, two of them come from their rare debut EP “Where Angels Fear” (the very good moments of musical arrangements of “Incubus” and “Amber Reflections”). From the original version “Sanctuary” is tender and melodic, holding an aggressive symphonic approach; “The Messenger” has an extreme Metal influence on bass guitar and drums parts; the bitter guitar riffs shown on “Chimaera” and the aggressive ones on “Eldritich Mirror”; and the contrasts of grandiose moments with fine moments on “St. Matthieu”. And the fine “St. Matthieu - ‘Remastered and Reborn’ (Compendulum Mega Mix)” is really wonderful.

Great work, and I hope the band can keep on doing great musical works.

Originality: 6
Songwriting: 10
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Tales from Beyond
2. Sanctuary
3. The Messenger
4. Shadow’s Scent
5. Chimaera
6. Sortileges
7. Eldritich Mirror
8. Heaven in Sunset
9. St. Matthieu
10. The City of Ys
11. Bride of the Dark
12. The Boat of the Dead
13. Incubus
14. Amber Reflections
15. St. Matthieu - ‘Remastered and Reborn’ (Compendulum Mega Mix)
Sonia Hutchinson - Vocals
Dion Smith - Guitars
Rich Shillitoe - Guitars
Jon Hoare - Bass, keyboards
Andy Pester - Drums
Record Label: Bristol Archive Records


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Edited 01 December 2022

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