When hearing the music of The Mercy Stone for the first time, the tight grooves, catchy vocals, and imaginative soundscapes can easily make a seasoned music-lover’s ears perk up and take notice.
After the struggle of trying to define this group as Indie Rock, Neoclassical, Jazz, or Pop is revealed to be meaningless, what remains is a feeling that popular music is still capable of undergoing revolutions and that The Mercy Stone is attempting to sound the alarm. The task of distilling so much beauty from such diverse genres is no simple task. But, The Mercy Stone forges a seamless path into music future where a popular song can possess both profound musical depth as well as enough hooks and drive to keep your road trip upbeat. Their first album, Ghettoblaster (2017) was a complete anomaly in the current music landscape.
Progsphere gave this review: “Ghettoblaster is strange, off-kilter, obtuse, but also beautiful, a tapestry of weird and wonderful musical imagery and a masterwork of composition. It is not for everyone, perhaps not for most people, but for those who get it, there is little else in the entirety of recorded music that can so powerfully and completely transport you to another time, another place, another state of mind.”
With their second album, Above the Towers, The Mercy Stone has bridged the musical divide between popular music and art music in a way that should intrigue every music lover and musician of this generation.
The Mercy Stone was founded by composer/guitarist Scott Grady in 2016. After spending several years studying music composition in an academic setting, Grady sought to put his composition chops to work within a project that would have the substance and sophistication fitting for a contemporary-classical concert stage as well as the accessibility that would be palatable to rock audiences. After finishing a master’s degree in music composition in 2015, he spent the next year and a half exploring how to achieve this synthesis. Understanding the pitfalls of music fusion, Grady wished to create a classical/rock hybrid style that was organic, drawing inspiration from his years of absorbing, studying, and performing all flavors of popular music (classic rock, pop, reggae, metal, funk, psychedelic/experimental rock), world music (West African drumming, Flamenco, Eastern European dance music,) along with the Western art music he studied through his years in academia.
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