Kaotican Alphabet

A note from Will about Mercury Rev

Will explains the formative influence Mercury Rev had on Coldplay

If I could go back to 1998 and tell a 20-year-old me that we would be playing some shows with Mercury Rev in 2009, I think my younger self would laugh me all the way back to the present. Such was the importance of Deserter’s Songs to me and to our band. When we started out making music, trying to soak up as much information about songwriting, recording and generally what a band should be like, the blueprint was that band and that album. We met the producer of that album, Dave Fridmann, early in 1999 with a view to asking him to produce our first record. He told us stories of the band recording on 16mm video film and other mythical recording techniques that totally changed the way we assumed a band was supposed to make a record. Above all they managed to achieve with that record the thing that we have always striven towards (successfully or not), which is to create an album which is so evocative and complete in its atmosphere. Everything on it perfectly contributes to the whole.

I would like to thank Mercury Rev so much for playing these shows with us and also, unbeknownst to them at the time, for helping a young band understand a little better the possibilities of music.