12 of Mercury Rev’s Favorite Tracks

Mercury Rev helped invent the kind of orchestral psychedelia that’s become so popular in recent years. Their songs seems vast and symphonic with lightly twinkling pop that never fails to enchant. The band recently released their highly anticipated The Light In You, an album which follows the pattern of effervescence that the band is so know for. We asked Mercury Rev to make us a playlist of songs that they love, and we simply can’t get enough of it. Full of tracks with the same raw power and beauty as the ones they make, it’s no surprise that the playlist is an amazing listen.

The band is playing a CMJ showcase at LPR on 10/15 — be sure to check them out and have you’re mind blown.

Mercury Rev – The Queen of Swans


Mercury Rev’s Favorite Tracks | Listen for free at bop.fm

 1. The Velvet Underground – Foggy Notion

This is VU having some fun. This song was always a favorite. Lou Reed trying to do Motown! It inspired our song SUNFLOWER. — Sean

2. Elliot Smith – Everything Means Nothing To Me

The song starts with just Elliot’s vulnerable voice, then halfway through it blows up into a huge production with strings, mellotron, big drums. Our kind of song! — Sean

3. The Fall – Totally Wired

The groove and raw energy on this is amazing, and Mark E Smith, always at arms length, arm’s length. — Sean

4. Big Star – Holocaust 

This haunting beauty is layered with backwards sounds and atmospherics. Ken Stringfellow asked Jonathan to sing it in Central Park for the Big Star 3 tribute, and we re-connected with Ken, who helped arrange a bunch of the vocal harmonies on THE LIGHT IN YOU. — Sean

5. Frank Sinatra -All The Way

Frank could always croon a great torch song, this song influenced Autumn’s In The Air in a roundabout way. — Sean

6. The Dream Syndicate – When You Smile

It starts with a long feedback drone, and then a pretty little song drifts in underneath. Stunning! — Sean

7. Sonic Youth – Schizophrenia

We really liked the drum sounds on this song (and the whole Sister album), tried to get that sound on Rainy Day Record. — Sean

8. The Rascals – Groovin’

The production on this song is great. Are You Ready? — Sean

9. The Pretty Things – Deflecting Grey

Another tune with great production, psychedelic rock and blue eyed soul. — Sean

10. The Beatles – If I Needed Someone

One of George’s songs from Rubber Soul. This is partly what it’s like to get inside of Beatle George’s mind. — Sean

11. Terry Riley – G Song

We love Terry Riley, everything he has done. Here is a great short minimal song that is very deep! — Sean

12. Popol Vuh – Through Pain To Heaven

Popol Vuh is a great influence, has been since Yerself Is Steam. This song will bring out the Nosferatu in you! — Sean

Thanks Squarespace!