September 2003

Review of "Light This Candle"
Rating - A

Project Mercury are a four piece band consisting of Marian Mastrorilli (singer/songwriter/guitarist), Charlene Donohue (vocals/violin), Mark Arnold (drums/percussion) and Craig Fox (lead guitar/vocals). They are a breath of fresh air in the Acoustic Rock scene, creating a unique sound that I find difficulty comparing to other artists. The band calls the CD a musical journey, from acoustic ballads to epic Middle-Eastern flavored rock, and they are not far off the mark.

"Family of Strangers" portrays a truth we don't often think about: how we grow apart from our families, not intentionally, but just because of the nature of existence. "Enemy Lines" reminds me of Bob Dylan's "Masters of War," not in the way it sounds but in the complex message it portrays. It is certainly a troubling song for the troubled times we live in.

Project Mercury quickly changes pace with the jazzy, sultry "Faded Leather," lightening things up with a tune of a good girl doing bad things. The song is sexy and a real toe tapper.

Project Mercury have a gift for capturing sentiment through the use of what may seem a simple story. This is the case in "At Palisades." The Palisades was an amusement park just outside New York and the main character is remembering the park as a simile of lost youth. Ironically, as a child I often dreamed of visiting Palisades Park so this song has special meaning for me. The softness of the song reminds me of some of the things Heart did on their classic "Dog and Butterfly."

"If I Was a Child" is a pure rock number, again reminiscing about childhood. I could take the time to analyze and tell the interesting story of every song on this release, instead I'll leave it by saying that this disc is definitely worth a listen.