[17 October 2008]
Fans of Merz based in Europe can stop reading now—chances are, they’ve already heard everything that his new EP has to offer, given that everything on it is pulled directly from his latest album Moi et Mon Camion, which was released this past March. Presume Too Much is intended for American audiences, you see, to warm us up for the release of that same album, supposedly sometime in early ‘09. For now, what we get is this digital-only release, featuring four tracks of utterly pleasing lite-folk that actually contains very little of the electronic noodling and skittering that brought him to the attention of major labels back in 1999, a formula that brought him critical acclaim and retail apathy. Presume Too Much is the sound of an artist matured by hardship and pain (opening track “Eviction Song” was written after Merz was actually evicted and opens with the sound of a leaving moving van), yet one whose commitment to his craft was never in doubt. The title track is a lovely slice of well-produced pop goodness, while the two tracks that close the EP, “Call Me” and “Silver Moon Ladders”, reveal an artist not afraid to look at the sky and find meaning in the clouds. Presume Too Much is a perfect re-introduction to American audiences, hopefully a prologue to a more successful second go in the States.