Review – Midland’s “Drinkin’ Problem”

midland-ep

A traditional country band on a major label? Being pushed at radio? Yeah right. You’re pulling my leg. There’s no way this new group Midland is a traditional group, so let’s take a look at them. They’re a trio made up of Mark Wystrach (lead singer), Jess Carson (lead guitarist) and Cameron Duddy (bass player). Based out of Dripping Springs, Texas they came up with their name based off a Dwight Yoakam song. Some of their biggest influences they cite are Merle Haggard and Gary Stewart. Hold on a second. Stewart? Anyone who cites him as an influence must be the real deal (and good people to boot). After listening to lead single “Drinkin’ Problem” these guys prove they’re absolutely the real deal. This is straight up, stone cold, country music. It immediately takes me back to what country radio sounded like a couple of decades ago with all of the steel guitar. The song is your classic country theme of a guy at the bar drinking. Everyone is calling the situation a problem and something he needs to stop. But he assures it’s very much a solution and the real problem is heartbreak and a lot of thinking. Props to producer Shane McAnally for keeping the production restrained and letting the lyrics really drive this song. Wystrach’s delivers an all-around solid vocal performance. This is a group I can’t wait to hear more from. They’ve only released a self-titled EP so far and are currently working on a full album with McAnally and Josh Osborne. If that album is along the lines of “Drinkin’ Problem” and the rest of the EP, we’re in for a real treat. This is country music done right.

Grade: 8/10

 

Recommend? – Yes

Written by Mark Wystrach, Jess Carson, Cameron Duddy, Shane McAnally and Josh Osborne

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7 thoughts on “Review – Midland’s “Drinkin’ Problem”

  1. The bottom two songs on the MB top 50 this week are this song, and missing by WMM. They’re both being worked by major labels. If you would like to see a revival of traditional country at modern radio, it’s a great sign.

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  2. I love this song! It definitely reminds me of mainstream country when mainstream country was really good. I decided to check Midland’s music out a few weeks ago when I saw that Drinkin’ Problem had debuted on the chart and was pleasantly surprised. They reminded me of a mix of Jon Pardi, William Michael Morgan, and Brothers Osborne, all artists I am a huge fan of. Drinkin’ Problem is a great debut single and a great song in general. Hope it does well on the charts. 8/10

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  3. This song is amazing! I love that this is a song that’s catchy, while maintaining traditional instrumentation, like that awesome steel guitar. This song sort of reminds me of Lonestar’s early material, like “Tequila Talkin'”, “Runnin’ Away with My Heart”, and “No News”; the theme here is very much similar to the themes in Lonestar’s early work. This is a great start for Midland, and I’m definitely looking forward to hearing more from them. Grade: 8/10

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  4. I bought the Ep (for 2.49€ here) last November & i like all five tracks. “Drinkin’ Problem” is one of the few good songs on the charts. (8/10)

    New Album: Bryan Lewis – Gettin’ There – 11 Tracks – Self Release – Released (02/08)
    Bryan Lewis is a singer/songwriter who was born in Ohio. His influences are George Jones, Merle Haggard & Waylon Jennings. Gettin’ There is his second album. The influence of Jones & Haggard & Jennings is hearable. It’s a country album done the right way. Steel, fiddle, ballads like “Don’t Push Me Away”, a fun tune (“The Motorized Barstool”) & a bluegrass song (“Back To Old Kentucky”). The weak-spot is the unsteady production. (7/10)

    New Album: Jarrod Johnson – 1431: The Road Less Traveled – 10 Tracks – Self Release – Released (02/28)
    The singer/songwriter was not born in Texas but he moved to the lone star state a couple of years ago (failed marriage & other problems). Some of his songs reached the Texas Music Charts. 1431: The Road Less Traveled is his second album & was released with the help of a kickstarter-campaign.
    Jarrod Johnson co-wrote tracks with Roger Springer & Michael White. It’s a great album with acoustic fiddle/guitar-driven tracks like the first single “Long Way From OK”. Glen Duncan (fiddle), Terri Jo Box as duet-partner (“Living With Our Mistakes”) & Angela Hunt (backgound vocals) are part of the project. (9/10)

    New Album: Hunter Brothers – Getaway – 12 Tracks – Open Road Music/Hunter Brothers – Released (03/03)
    The five Hunter Brothers can sing. Great harmony vocals. High Valley are featured on “Country Stuff”. One of the High Valley brothers (Brad Rempel) co-produced a track.
    But well known names like High Valley or the ability to sing great harmony parts are not enough to produce a good album…a good country album. The concept worked for two singles (“El Dorado” & “Long Way To Love You”). Harmony-driven pop-country tunes. The rest of the album contains…harmony-driven pop-country tunes. Slow, mid-tempo, fast & the “rocking” track with High Valley. The title track is the new single. “Getaway” is a lightweight soft-reggae/pop summer song. Forgettable. (3/10)

    New Ep: Route 33 – The Switch – 7 Tracks – Route 33 Music – Released (02/17)
    Route 33 is a new australian male country duo. The first single (“Last First Kiss”) reached the lower ranks of the Country Tracks Top 40 Charts & was gone after one week a couple of month ago. On iTunes the single & the Ep went to #1. The songs are modern-country-pop. Clean & faceless. Not bad, not good with a little bit of FGL here & Waterloo Revival there. (5/10)

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  5. I’m really liking what I’ve heard from these guys so far! They kind of sound like an updated version of 90’s country. I love this song, and the other ones on their EP, as well. In particular, I really like “This Old Heart,” too. Sounds a lot like the kind of country I grew up with and always loved! I sure do hope “Drinkin’ Problem” becomes a successful debut for them. As seak05 pointed out, it seems to be doing quite well so far, especially for a debut single from a new traditional country band. I’m looking forward to hearing a full length album from them!

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  6. I just heard them not too long ago for the first time and I totally agree with this review. I am excited to see what they come out with!

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