The Mere

by Empty Mirror

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"Sculpted to perfection, Empty Mirror create a timeless sense of grandeur on the patient and persistent journey of The Mere" -Skope Magazine

"Surprisingly emotional and wickedly addictive from start to finish, The Mere is a swan song from a group that never got the recognition from critics that they deserved in life, but can now find a sincere appreciation from audiences in death. In a lot of ways, the dark, hollow tonality of this record echoes the story of The Empty Mirror itself; the complexities of the music are overwhelming to put it mildly, but to be denied the genuine bliss of experiencing this album in its complete state would be a shame of epic proportions. The bottom line? Give this record the spin it’s been waiting for – I have a feeling you won’t regret it." -The Indie Source

"The lyrics in songs like 'Clownishness,' the title track and 'Breakfast at Midnight' are sharp as butcher knives and provide a sense of clarity amidst the suffocating atmosphere of noir-esque bass and drum violence.... The Mere, put simply, is a poignant, unforgettable dreamscape broken into nine tracks that vault between the bleak and the boisterous, finding a soft center somewhere between the two that is perhaps the most powerful gift The Empty Mirror could have ever given us." -Music Existence

"The Empty Mirror haven’t finished imparting their message from beyond the grave to us yet; everything that we’ve heard up until this point in the album has been a preamble to “Inedia (Naked Girl),” which brings The Mere to a close with a kaleidoscopic explosion of melodies fused together in a single tightly wound track.As the roaring feedback crumbles into reverberating guitars that fade to black before us, The Empty Mirror’s so-called lost record comes to a stop, and we’re left to ponder the deeper meaning within its layers of enigmatic poetry and stealthy instrumental emotionality. I myself couldn’t be much more pleased with what Grant Huling has produced in this gorgeously appointed LP that lives up to everything The Empty Mirror were capable of during their highly extolled time running the underground." -Vents Magazine

"In honor of the tenth anniversary of Overwhelm’s distribution, Huling diligently worked to finish the production on the band’s intimate nine-track sophomore effort. The group’s follow-up record was finally released last fall, and proved to be just as stunning, influential and progressive as their debut." -ShockYa!

"The Mere is fascinating because of its tones of didactic reflection and complicated yet simple sound, like walking through a dream enveloped in a snowstorm."

"The Mere has a bold and dynamic sense and grips the listener into a trance like state." -Indie Pulse

Music video for "The Mere":

Music video for "Thinking in Tongues":


released August 11, 2018

Grant Huling (Vox, Bass, Guitar)
Bill Kim (Drums)
Kate Amrine (Trumpet, Piccolo Trumpet)
Karl Lyden (Trombone, Bass Trombone)

Drums recorded at Hideout Studio in North Seattle by James Sullivan and Alan Chizmar. Brass recorded in Williamsburg. Everything else recorded in German Village.

Written and produced by Grant Huling. Opus 6.

Painting by William Moran:

Instrumental version available here:

A live performance of The Mere with strings:


all rights reserved



Empty Mirror Ohio

Born Oberlin, Ohio, 2005. Died Seattle, Washington, 2009.

Revived in 2018 for two posthumous releases: The Mere (the LP we had started when we broke up, completed as intended) and Overkill (outtakes spanning the life).

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Track Name: The Mere
I'm the architect
of my disconnect
I'm the fingers in your hair

I'm that final round
as the night shuts down
I'll only turn you in your sleep

As she turns back to me

I'm the dream that ends
with the morning spent
wondering "what's wrong with me?"

The handsome mayor
falls from favor
with the paper
no one reads

We're mediocrity
We're mediocrity
We're mediocrity

We're turning into me
We're turning into me
How could it come to be?

I'll tell all
Track Name: All Stems (Ready to Fast-Forward Now)
Nobody knows
Nobody knows you

I take
lovers over my bent and brittle knee
I break
whatever you call that -- your sympahy
I make
the hollow pride concede
yeah, I make the hollow mind conceive

there's a simple question we could ask

But nobody knows to
Nobody knows you
You are the half-truth
on my arm, desire-proof

Ready to tell the world that all is well?
You're creaking the words like rusty oil wells
They'll take what you don't want to sell
And you'll take the years they owe in hell

nobody knows you
Nobody chose to
You are the half-truth
Like a scar I smile through
oh, we're stuck in a damn loop
Oh we're stuck
just continue

Track Name: Keep It Real
so take a moment
the moment

and keep it real
keep it real
Keep it
Track Name: Breakfast at Midnight
Firefighters know
Firefighters notice things

sleeping for the bell to ring

It's ill-begotten fame
It's not his real name

I'm some kind of game

I care because I can't
I can't because I care

will he ever
will he ever nod off?
will he ever
will he ever resolve?
Track Name: Clownishness
I couldn't work it out
I couldn't work it out
Standing before it
I tried to implore it
but I had a sudden doubt

half-thinking roundabout
whimpering from a shout
oh, what's that quotation on civilization?
It's something I care about

trying to down it out
Trying to drown it out
disintegration and remasculation
bilious in the mouth

I have it where I want it
I have the means to flaunt it

I ask politely
I do not want to fright thee

we pussies ask politely
we do not want to, frankly
Work it out

work it out
work it out
Work it out

Work it out
Work it out
purge it out
purge it out
We're playing out
Track Name: Thinking in Tongues
One thinks what one will
sure do love you all the time

at least eat what you've killed
I'm consumed by my desire

I know I want you
I can feel the fire
every night

The moment of

still I love it half the time
Track Name: Two-Drink Minimum to Leave the Beach
Seconds to be your lover
decades to be your friend
I made a poem of her
Wind over sand

I didn't write this ending
I simply understand
Entropy's never-ending
The sea chews the land

If this is liberation
I can't be free

My life in just one moment of pure release

Ampersand, ampersand and endlessly shifting speech
everything poisonous is locked in our reach

If this is liberation
I can't be free

Bonfire leer
Fire up an effigy
I tremble nearer
I love you
I love you still
A castle
a man of silt
Track Name: Fatehandler (For an Insignificant Man)
The mind is weak
The body creaks
The body seeks haven

If you can't think
It's best to sing
If you can't sing, shut up

There's an excellence inside you
small wonder
Let a second guess divide you

Shut up
Track Name: Inedia (Naked Girl)
Suddenly hungry
pours a drink
asks not what she needs
Half empty

never the words
never the words
Naked girl

grows in reverse
into a birth
Naked girl

Sever, sever
It's your only lever
Better leave her first

Fuck her first.

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