Mike Midwestern: Inhibitors

mikemidwesternMike Midwestern: Inhibitors
Based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Mike Midwestern self-released his first full-length album on September 28th. Much like fellow Minneapolis artists, The Chord and The Fawn, Mike utilizes a folksy, acoustic rock sound to share his work.
The album is filled with ten tracks that jump on the warm undertones of acoustic guitar and piano. At times, the violin joins in and the whole thing feels like sitting in front of the fire place with the closest of closest in your life.
His voice is rather fine. He sings light and airy. There’s a hint of speak in it, as though he were talking to you. Yet, its all inviting in a calm manner as it attempts to connect to the listener on a personal level. And that is the heart of the album.
The press release correctly describes Inhibitors as ” a record about the imbalance of life, love, family, and everything in between”. With track titles such as “Everything’s a War” and “Death of a Family”, its easy to see what part of Midwestern’s past is drawn upon to create.
And maybe that’s the most triumphant part about the album. The themes put forth are quite common in our society today. Yet, never once does Midwestern yell, or become violently angry with his music. Everything is more of a lull that comes after accepting the hardships that came your way and making the best of what was bad.
Unfortunately, a great part of the album is slower paced. It quickly becomes difficult to give it your full attention on one listening alone. The heavy themes and somber songs do something between relaxing the listener and numbing them. At times it felt as though I had already listened to a particular song earlier on the album.
In the end, Inhibitors just feels too personal in terms of Mike Midwestern. It deals with very specific things in his life that we aren’t really privy to. We get a general idea, but it is very general. And that’s fine, we are in no way entitled to know the secrets of this young man. But the song clearly has deeper meanings to him and his family which leaves a bit of distance between me as a third party and the artist.
20% of the proceeds of the album will go to Twin Cities based non-profit organization Treehouse. Treehouse works with troubled teens who are having a difficult time dealing with life, offering them love and support that may not be received otherwise. Mike also donates $2 of every album that was released for promotional use. If you like “Everything’s a War”, consider purchasing the album and help out a great cause.
Rating: 5.3/10
MP3:Mike Midwestern “Everything’s a War”
Buy: iTunes