ALBUM REVIEW: Mercury Sun – A Long Way From Hill Street

Words By Tracey Moyle.

Brisbane boys Mercury Sun release their debut album ‘A Long Way From Hill Street’ on 6th September and with it’s impressive blend of Indie, Alternative and classic rock it captures that brilliant new rock sound coming to light from many of our emerging young local bands.   The essence of story telling combined with the musical influences that exists with each band member, shines through within their songs and in a recent interview with GC Live, lead singer and slide guitarist, Ash Benham said “The album title ‘A Long Way From Hill Street’ is kind of a mantra to let ourselves know where we have come from and to know that we are moving forward.” 

The opening track Come of Age starts off big with a burst of rock then easing into the vocals, telling the story as the title says implies.  Harry Schneider on drums keeps it all together with a good pace, the chorus building it up to a good solid rock song.  With great riffs embodying their sounds and that classic Aussie Rock feel, it hooks you in.  A great catchy track to open with.   

It’s an easy transition into Just Like Hollywood, beginning with more of an indie- rock vibe, while still carrying a laid back rock beat throughout.  They build the song well with Jacob Dunn on bass, Connor Reen, and Louis Reen on Guitars working perfectly together to build a seductive bridge to bring the song to heavier rock finish. 

Third track and first single from the album Stumbing, has a great intro and with a good steady rock pace it’s reminiscent of older Powderfinger days.   Benham’s vocals are easy to listen to and he sings with conviction.  Again they capture that ebb and flow effect perfectly, the song building at all the right moments.  Lyrically it’s simplistic and musically the song has all the ingredients needed to win over listeners.

Fourth song and latest release, All My Friends brings out a mellower tone, Benham’s voice has an overall familiar tone singing with passion through the chorus. A great story of not giving up on your dreams with lyrics  “All my friends are running away, from the dreams they had the life they wanted. We won’t sleep til the sun shines, we won’t sleep til we get what we came for.”

Sin city next, the second single released off the album, again a good classic steady paced rock beat with more stories of the journey the band have had over the years since their second EP ‘Generation Why?’ from 2017.  With catchy riffs and a hypnotic beat keeping the pace flowing, it’s another good track chosen for release.

The sixth song Switchblade, starts with a very indie feel at the intro but builds into a stronger pace, still keeping a good balance between the heavier chorus and the smooth beats through the verse.   The rise and fall of the song doesn’t mean there’s any less intensity vocally.  Benham’s voice has that ‘hey he sounds like…….’ feel, but you can’t quite put your finger on it.   He has that great Aussie rock emphasis and he carries it well.  Their sound is continually evolving throughout the album and Closer again temporarily opens with a slower steady beat, a crisp a guitar riff with music and vocals building the story.  Schneider matches the pace on drums, climbing through the number at all the right places.  This track has a great finish vocally.  

Finally Hill Street opens with sweet acoustics and the story telling comes back into the fray.  A song that lyrically comes through as the bands personal journey.  Their ups and downs are projected in the song itself finishing off with a calmer feel from the rockier numbers previous.

Mercury Sun have managed to capture a great Australian rock feel in this album embodying the influences our local music has had on all of us. Their music captures hints of influence from the 80’s right through to now while still producing a great authentic rock sound. 

From those original indie sounds of bands like GANGgajang in the 80’s to the rock vibes of Powderfinger in the 90’s, carrying through to hints of  today with Thirsty Merc and Boy and Bear, Mercury Sun definitely have the foundation for that special formula needed to still be producing good music in years to come. 

The Album launch is at Tomcat in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley on Friday September 6th

Event page HERE.

Follow Mercury Sun on Facebook HERE.

Brisbane Album Launch

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