Midland's sophomore Let It Roll album is out on Friday, Aug. 23. The trio, made up of Mark Wystrach, Jess Carson and Cameron Duddy, has had explosive success since the release of their debut single, "Drinkin' Problem," from their freshman On the Rocks album, which the guys are grateful for, even if it did make them busier than ever.
With the 14 songs on Let It Roll, Midland went back to some of the early days of their music, along with sharing the current struggle they have to maintain some semblance of balance as their life continues to get busier and busier.
“We’ve had a large catalog of songs that are dating back to the Sonic Ranch sessions, which is the first time the three of us got together to record demos, which was five years ago this summer," Wystrach told their label, Big Machine Records. "And there’s songs that we maybe didn’t know how to approach back then, that we’d been playing in our live set for a long time. Songs like ‘Fourteen Gears,’ ‘Gettin’ the Feel' – those have been around for a long time.
"And some of the stuff was new and written while we’ve been on the road touring On the Rocks," he continued. "We haven’t stopped touring and moving, basically for the last three years. So it’s an amalgamation of all the songs, but there’s a linear thread that ties through and a theme I think, that really, is being on the road – perhaps the strains that puts on various relationships and you’re gonna hear a lot of that."
Midland might be one of the reigning acts in country music, but they aren't about to be defined, or influenced, by just one genre of music.
“We love music history, and not just in country music, rock and roll and blues and jazz and old American Songbook stuff," said Carson. "We just kind of listen to everything and we listen to what we think is the best music ever made. "A lot of the music that we think is the best music ever made happens to come from a certain time period. And we do listen to modern music as well. We’re not pretending that it’s a certain time period and you’re just ignoring everything else. We listen to modern music we try to keep in touch with what’s going on.
"We live in 2019 so if we write a song it may be influenced by whatever we’re listening to, but it’s got to have us in it," he added. "It’s got to be personal to us and it’s got to be from the heart. So it’s never just going to be a rehashing of an old song or an old thing.”
Midland is proud of their work with On the Rocks, but even more proud of Let It Roll, and where their career is headed next.
“From On the Rocks, we’ve all three, as individuals, have grown," acknowledged Wystrach. "As musicians and songwriters, we’ve grown, which comes from living, which comes from practicing, which comes from playing and experiencing. And that’s what Let It Roll is to us, I think, it’s a continuation but it’s an evolution, and I think that’s what you’re seeing in the songs.”
Purchase Let It Roll at their official website.
Photo Credit: Getty images / Roger Kisby