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The fine debut LP from the original Rev...,
This review is from: Yerself Is Steam (+ Car Wash Hair EP) [SPECIAL EDITION] (Audio CD)
Released in 1991, 'Yerself is Steam' was the acclaimed debut LP from Mercury Rev - though Rev mainman Jonathan Donohue had already appeared on 'In a Priest Driven Ambulance' & 'Hit to Death in the Future Head.' This reissue gathers together the Rev's fine debut alongside their classic 'Car Wash Hair' single - the latter one of those sublime alt-guitar joys alongside Beat Happening's 'Indian Summer', The Vaselines' 'Molly's Lips', American Music Club's 'Western Sky' & They Might Be Giants' 'She's An Angel.' The demo-versions of 'Coney Island Cyclone' & 'Chasing a Bee' remain of more academic interest...this isn't quite close to the double-tape version of 'Yerself is Steam' with a bonus tape of obscurities that sufaced in 1992 and I have somewhere in a box...
The highlights of 'Yerself is Steam' remain opener 'Chasing a Bee', the epic 'Coney Island Cyclone' & closing joy 'Very Sleepy Rivers' - it all goes together wonderfully and sounds like Beat Happening colliding with 'Bull in the Woods' colliding with the earlier Lips' releases.
'Yerself is Steam' is a fine debut album, and better than their last LP recorded with D. Baker (the original singer) 'Boces' the following year. It's not their best material - I'd take everything else bar 'Boces' over this, particularly 'See You on the Other Side' and the under-valued 'The Secret Migration.' A key release of its time whichever way you look at it and one to file next to 'Loveless', 'Transmissions...Satellite Heart', 'Spiderland' & 'Souvlaki'...