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Mercy: Dancing for the Death of an Imaginary Enemy

4.5 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 15, 2008
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Editorial Reviews

Long-awaited third studio album, their first album for American Recordings, produced by Rick Rubin. Mercy...features 12 new tracks showcasing the band's lushly textured sound propelled by the incandescent vocal intensity of singer Jimmy Gnecco. . The album is a triumph for the band in every sense since they were able to finally record they album they dreamed of making in spite of all that has transpired since the release of Precious in 2002. Features the single 'The Worst Things Beautiful'. 2008.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 15, 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: American
  • ASIN: B00133KDWS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #165,993 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Their best album yet. Ours' third album, Mercy, gets back to the moody, soulful, epic sound of their debut, Distorted Lullabies. Like that album, Mercy ranges in mood from dark ("Murder," "Black") to hopeful ("Ran Away to Tell the World" and "The Worst Things Beautiful," the album's stand-out tracks). But underlying every song is the most profound longing you're likely to hear on a rock album.

Jimmy Gnecco sings about the pain of failed relationships and the hope of recovery and finding something better, as in the opening lines of "Live Again": "The cuts are gonna make you forget years / You married someone's carrying your tears / But you sleep with the ones that keep you from all that / You said yourself you can't afford to feel / So live again." The ending of "The Worst Things Beautiful" also demonstrates this profound optimism in the face of ugliness: "So I'll wake every morning, wake with the sun / Where the worst thing's always the first thing to come / Find a way to move on, and a way to be strong / Because some things do change / Some things come that make / The worst things beautiful."

Oh, and Jimmy Gnecco can *sing*. In fact, he may be the best singer in the rock world today (the only serious competition that I'm aware of is Matt Bellamy from Muse).

The inevitable comparisons will be made to Muse, as well as U2, Radiohead, and of course Jeff Buckley, but such comparisons are really just groping in the dark, because Ours is unique. But they'll give you a hint to the extent that, if you like those other bands, you will probably appreciate Ours as well.

Ours fans have been waiting for this album for many years now, and it was worth the wait. If you're not a fan already, you should be. Pick up this album.
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Format: Audio CD
Ours has been around for quite sometime, and has built quite an army of followers despite never even having a charting album..ever. Their fan base has been built on lovers of hard rock and lovers of beautiful voices. This band has a strong assessment of both factors and this CD is no exception.

It has been 6 long years since their last album and the wait seemed to have paid off. The band has never stopped touring and most, if not all, of these songs have been written and performed on tour over the last few years. For those who have been around, these songs are no new material but can come as a surprise to hear them in polished form. As one of these types of people myself, I must commend the band on not straying too far from their original raw incarnations on tour. Their recorded version of "God Only Wants You", which they have been performing since 2004, is just heavenly. It has the perfect balance of raw emotion and polished arrangements.

One of the most touching songs that Ours has performed on tour was unfortunately not included on this album. "I Heard You Singing" was written about Jimmy Gnecco's dear friend, the late Jeff Buckley, and as I recall, would really get to both the audience and the singer when performed. I always figured such a gem would be prominently featured on the record as such a song would not only garner praise but also attention as Jeff has built a posthumous mainstream fan base over the years. Such a shame, may this song eventually find the light of day.

Overall, the record is a must have for anyone who loves strong voices and esotheric themes.
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Format: Audio CD
Like many others, I have patiently (and not-so-patiently) eagerly awaited Ours' third album. And as others have mentioned, it has been 6 LONG years since "Precious" was released. Most recently, the two live performances I was lucky enough to see in the past year have held me over quite well as "Mercy..." was continually pushed back.

As you might have imagined, this is not an unbiased review. However, I did have great expectations for this release. Previously I had waited with great anticipation of other releases and have been severely let down (Taproot, OneSideZero, Boy Hits Car, come to mind). Rest assured there is no let down with "Mercy...". I will not take you play-by-play through each and every song, that's part of the journey you need to take when you pop in this CD for the first time. And what a wonderful journey it is.

If you like Ours, you'll love "Mercy...". If you have yet to hear Ours, give them a listen; start with any of their releases, you can't go wrong. Is "Mercy..." their best album yet? Well, I've only listened to it one time through so I'm not ready to make that statement yet. But it is nothing short of great.
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Format: Audio CD
First off, I too agree that Jimmy Gnecco has an incredible voice..probably one of the best in the rock world today. He can breathe out a low, mournful groan, then, in the next instant, belt out a powerful wailing scream, so full of emotion that it just pierces your soul.

With that being said, his incredible voice is still in the forefront on all 12 tracks of Mercy (Dancing for the Death of an Imaginary Enemy), but with the legendary Rick Rubin producing this album, some of the songs lose some of that sheer, raw energy of the band's 2 previous releases. The album has an overly produced strain running through some of the tracks making them feel formulaic and processed.

There are some strong tracks on this release. The most powerful being the opening track, "Mercy". The sound is tight and full of doom-laiden energy and when Gnecco's voice explodes with that powerful scream, it just caries the song to a higher level. This song definitely has a much more refined sound than songs from previous releases but its sound is the expected direction that Ours fans had hoped for. Other strong tracks that mix their progress with a solid guitar push and energy infused vocals would be "Moth", "Murder"' and the 2 tracks "Lost" and "Live Again", which both start out with a nice mid-tempo acoustic sound but builds to a powerful, guitar-swirling crescendo mixed in with Gnecco's perfectly on key screaming. In my opinion, the 11th track "Lost" should have been the closing track and just makes the last song, "Get Up", feel like an after thought.

Every band's sound changes with time and that's the way it should be, but, for some of the tracks, it ended up being distracting and left me feeling like I was listening to another band completely. A good example would be "Saint".
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