- Audio CD (15 July 2016)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Mint
- ASIN: B000023ZMH
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Audio Cassette | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 29,012 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Yerself Is Steam
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Mercury Rev, led by Jonathon Donohue, stunned the world with their debut album 'Yerself Is Steam' on Mint Films/Jungle Records in '91. Famed for their quirky, haunting, and unique songs, they are beyond easy categories. They built on their reputation with 2 more albums 'Boces' and 'See You On The Other Side' on Beggars Banquet plus tours of UK, Europe and USA, then in 1998 'Deserter's Songs' on V2 achieved massive 'Album Of The Year' critical acclaim, followed by 'All Is Dream' and 'The Secret Migration'. Regular features in publications such as NME, THE GUARDIAN, THE OBSERVER, UNCUT, MOJO, etc, always refer to this landmark 'Yerself Is Steam' album. Now touring to support their new BELLA UNION album, 'The Light In You'.
Mercury Rev's 1991 debut, with its atmosphere of spontaneity and its loose contemporary updating of psychedelia, in which melody and noise competed for attention, belied the fact that it supposedly took three years to create. Nevertheless, despite its inconsistencies and lapses into self-indulgence, this was the sound of a band resolutely striving for originality: the addition of flute and woodwind to the bass, guitars and drums gave an occasional hint of dreamy 60's folk without seeming derivative or nostalgic, and without detracting from the record's nod to the sonic experimentation of the likes of Sonic Youth (as on "Syringe Mouth"). At times frustrating and willfully chaotic, occasionally genuinely inventive and tunefully inspired, Yerself Is Steam manages to exert a long-lasting appeal that deserves revisiting. --Burhan Tufail
Top Customer Reviews
In my mind, this is Mercury Rev at their greatest, remeniscent of "Loveless" by My Bloody Valentine. I simply cannot do this album justice in words, just buy it.
The music is truly unlike anything you'll ever hear. The songs seem to float from your speakers and fill the room with smoky atmospheres, you'll feel like you're wading through the room. But as your head is filled with hazy melodies, a soaring guitar riff, pounding percussion beat or delicate flute section will emerge which fills your heart enough to burst. But while 'Yerself Is Steam' succeeds in being vague and dense, it still has the tunes in rock-out moments like 'syringe mouth' and 'Coney Island Cyclone'.
The lyrics are richly bizarre and manage to be enigmatic ('I need pink, I need cream. I need someone who sews up seams'), hilarious ('space control uh...it's out there, I better get my pants back on. My mom is coming over') or profoundly moving ('And you wonder why I leave so soon/ I get so high then sink/ to the bottom of your room').
The words can mean nothing, everything or both at once and are simply perfect.
As with each Rev release, there isn't another album which sounds anything like this- even other Rev records. Listening to this will make you a better person.
I listened to it a good five or six times that day and by the end I was completely entranced. This is one of those incredible records that grows on you with every listen, over ten years later I still don´t think I understand everything about it.
This incredibly bold debut is a masterwork of ranging sonic noise. "Chasing a bee," along with all the other tracks begins so insipidly and calmly before building to it´s tumult. It´s an incredibly brave way to begin your first record. I imagine most bands say to themeselves,"let´s really try and enter with a bang." Mercury Rev have conjured up a bulbling caldron of noise.
"Coney island cyclone," with it´s terrifically catchy riff is the only composition that comes remotely close to what you might call a conventional pop song. "Frittering," with it´s inventibly bassy start is probably my favourite track. I also like the moaning sound and haunting lyric on,"very sleepy rivers." Individual tracks are of secondary importance on this record, they all marry together to form a unique panorama.
This record is a complete one off, a beautiful never ending story that I never tire of going back to.
A review cannot do this album justice, I'm not elequent enough to convey my emotions when listening to this. Of all the albums I own, this one stands out, more so than their successful album 'Deserters Songs' which you should also own.
I think three of the four long tracks are superb. 'Chasing A Bee' is like a tornado of guitars with effects pedals at full throttle, with a calm, tiny voice in the eye of the storm, the whole underpinned by three repeated notes which give the song its structure. 'Sweet Oddysee...' is more like waves of rolling thunder; this is scary music. 'Frittering' is the best of the lot, surfing on a beautiful, two-chord acoustic riff while the obligatory grungy guitar creates a band of static-like background noise. 'Very Sleepy Rivers' is the only reason I don't give the album full marks. For me, it doesn't have the distinctive edge of the other tracks and consumes the last twelve minutes of the album, creating an anti-climax.
The shorter tracks all have something to commend them, the stomping 'Syringe Mouth' and the quieter 'Blue And Black' in particular. For the most part, 'Yerself Is Steam' is a great piece of early nineties psychedelia.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent item as described. Prompt dispatch, safe and sound. Top marks.Published 15 months ago by P. F. Tracgransglaws
One of the best albums of all time? Undoubtedly! It's a simple case of quantum dynamics and 13.8 billion years. Read morePublished on 17 Oct. 2012 by Amazon Customer
I was introduced to Mercury Rev in 1992; I remember it well - the Royal Albert Hall, as the main support act to The House of Love, and they followed the (then unheard of)... Read morePublished on 12 Oct. 2009 by M. Stevens
I just wanted to say all the reviews that give five stars are right on the button!Published on 9 Mar. 2008 by D. L. Wilkinson
Yerself Is Steam is an album of sweeping anthemic bursts of rock that follow strange trains of thought. Read morePublished on 27 Feb. 2006 by Peter Uys
I dunno about you guys out there but I never thought Sonic Youth's music lived up to it's reputation.
Good job we have the likes of Yerself Is Steam to fall back on! Read more