July is the Month of Merge, as the label continues its yearlong windup in celebration of its 25th anniversary and a festival the end of the month. The latest of their promotions comes from Google Play
which has a short documentary about Merge in addition to several tracks by label bands that Google Play users can download. Among these tunes are Merge-on-Merge covers: Hiss Golden Messenger does Spoon, while Superchunk does Wye Oak. The Mountain Goats' stripped-down piano take on "Who You Are" by American Music Club is a particular strong point. The documentary highlights the early days of Merge Records and its unconventional beginning, and includes interviews with co-founders Mac McCaughan and Laura Ballance, bands and friends of the label alike.
You can stream the documentary and check out those tracks here.
Quick, maybe frustrating heads-up: Though some tracks are free to download, you'll still have to enter your credit card information to process the "sale." Commerce.