Strange Mercy
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Strange Mercy

12 Sep 2011

7.99 (VAT included if applicable)
  Song Title
Chloe In The Afternoon
Northern Lights
Strange Mercy
Neutered Fruit
Champagne Year
Hysterical Strength
Year Of The Tiger

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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 12 Sep 2011
  • Label: 4AD
  • Copyright: 2011 4AD Ltd
  • Total Length: 40:52
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B005JN7QAK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,025 in MP3 Albums (See Top 100 in MP3 Albums)

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Kind Of Strange 14 Sep 2011
Format:Audio CD
The beguiling strengths of Annie Clark's 2009 album 'Actor' quite swept me
away. Wonderfully strange music from an idiosyncratic performer quite
out on her own in the wild-woman-walking-on-the-left-hand-side-of-
the-middle-of-the-the-road-stakes! A maker of magical sonic worlds
quite unlike anything else out there. A truly talented maverick.
('Black Rainbow' still gives me the chills every time I listen to it!)

Her new album is no-less full of wonderment. 'Strange Mercy', her third
release, drags us willingly back into familiar territory but there is a
greater edge and power in these eleven songs than she has unleashed before.
The opening track 'Chloe In The Afternoon' is a stunning outpouring of
raw and unbridled energy. The savage guitar hits us in the solar plexus
like a runaway bulldozer; the pounding drums a call to pagan worship and
at its heart Ms Clarke's delicate and contrasting vocal delivery strives to
find some kind of still centre in the chaos. A solid mass of contradictions.

Its polar opposite is the quite beautiful 'Champagne Year', a deeply
affecting melody shot through with ethereal pedal-steel guitar, dark
subterranean beats and glistening synth arpeggios. A web of enchantment.

Her pithy personal lyrical observations on 'Cheerleader' (a song about NOT
wanting to be a cheerleader) mix pathos and dry humour in equal measure and
final track 'Year Of The Tiger' struts and swaggers its stuff magnificently!

It is to the glorious invention 'Cruel' that we should turn, however, to
encounter Ms Clarke's finest moment. The heavenly harmonies and blistering
guitar frame a song of infectious and near-hysterical widescreen extravagance.
Its sheer bravado made me laugh out loud. Three and a half minutes of pure joy!

'Strange Mercy' deserves our full attention and rapturous applause.

Highly Recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In my top 3 of 2011 24 Nov 2011
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Quite simply, superb. The most inventive, interesting and surprising Lp I've heard this year. I'm a sucker for a good tune, and this Lp has plenty of those too. Like a more quirky, ballsy and melodic Joan Wasser. This has the feel of a tour de force album from start to finish.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Her music is powerful and fascinating. 12 Sep 2011
By Karl
Format:Audio CD
Annie Clark strikes a downright divine balance between scornful rock squall and serenely sweet vocalizing.
Her third album is her most mercurial yet, a dense clash of post-punk fuzz and baroque-pop rumination, with esoteric 'new elements, from atonal electro-jazz to synth scratches to cheeky talkbox.
While she was charmingly fey on 2007 debut Marry Me [CD] and caustic on 2009 follow-up "Actor", she's introspective and fanciful here, crafting a single mother's lullaby on the title track, and repenting for her insecure past on "Cheerleader".
Yet she's no passive pom-pom girl: Clark's complex femininity, both self-possessed and keenly evolving, is what makes her music so powerful and fascinating. S. Anderson
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This will linger for some time 9 Feb 2012
By Syriat TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Showing quirky inventiveness and an ear for a good tune Annie Clark shepherds her third album into life and with its mix of guitar fuzz and breathy vocals it works its charm well.

Not everything is immediate here. On first listen Cheerleader sounds an odd choice for a single for example, but its chorus seems to lodge in your memory on repeated listens. Northern Lights sounds like it could be recorded in the eighties with guitar feedback to give it a more modern feel. Hysterical Strength starts like Talking Heads Crosseyed and Painless and then goes slightly more mainstream. Certainly you can hear their influences as well as Kate Bush and many others.

The lyrics are dark and the music stark. This really delivers a memorable suite of songs that are inventive enough to stand out and not too off the wall to alienate. Deservedly ending up on end of the year lists this is a solid offering that is well worth checking out.
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5.0 out of 5 stars First listen 19 Jun 2013
Format:MP3 Download|Verified Purchase
Bought this, kind of on a whim, looking for something different...glad that I did. I know that I will totally hammer this as it is a instantly likeable, intriguing, mad, heavy, beautiful and unique album. I checked it out because of the, (admittedly), slim connection to Grizzly Bear. It didn't let me down.
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5.0 out of 5 stars More from this amazing artist! 26 May 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
In my opinion a more confident and more assertive tone to this offering than her previous albums but still with that unique ethereal sound that is St Vincent's trademark. Often understated, these tracks will haunt you long after listening - well worth the investment!
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