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Natalie Bergman - Mercy

  by Zena Grieg

published: 9 / 6 / 2021

Natalie Bergman - Mercy
Label: Third Man Records
Format: CD


Powerful and therapeutic debut solo album from Wilde Bell’s Natalie Bergman recorded after the deaths of her father and stepmother in a car accident

The first solo album by Natalie Bergman, the multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter, well-known for her work with her band Wilde Bell, has just been released. Self-produced by Bergman, ‘Mercy’ was written in the wake of the deaths of her father and stepmother following a collision with a drunk driver; the album is imprinted by grief and tenderness. ‘Mercy’ was created by Bergman while on retreat at a monastery in the Chama Valley in New Mexico. A collection shaped by loss and love, the lyrics and some song titles (‘Talk to the Lord’ and ‘I Will Praise You’) are clearly influenced by her religious belief. An aura of contemplation and soul-searching pervades the songs. Several of the twelve tracks are characterised by a fusion of gospel with unconventional reggae-inspired instrumentation and a splash of psychedelic rock, Bergman’s soulful vocals giving an uplifting, hopeful edge. Stand-out tracks include ‘I Will Praise You’ with its reggae rhythm, a song she said she wrote about “perseverance in an unkind time.” ‘I’m Going Home’ with its hypnotic beat; ‘Paint the Rain’ a catchy 70s gospel-sounding song on the transience of love and life, encouraging us to “love all the way” in the face of the ephemerality of life; the soulful and gospel-like tribute to her stepmother ‘Sweet Mary’; and the poignant closing track in memory of her father ‘Last Farewell.’ ‘Mercy’ has a stripped-back simplicity, reflecting the evolution of the songs, a powerful debut, embodying resilience. Bergman said: “This album provided me with my only hope for coming back to life myself.”

Track Listing:-
1 Talk to the Lord
2 Shine Your Light on Me
3 I Will Praise You
4 I'm Going Home
5 Home at Last
6 You Make My World Go Round
7 Paint the Rain
8 The Gallows
9 Your Love is My Shelter
10 He Will Lift You up Higher
11 Sweet Mary
12 Last Farewell

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