The Midweekly – Mitski

The Midweekly is our column from Mike Jeffers; lead singer of Chicago punk stalwarts SCRAMmusic junkie and all around righteous dude.

A few years ago Mitski thought she was done with music for good. The multiplying complexities of new stardom in an often disillusioning industry became a bit too overwhelming for the Nashville based singer. But much to her fans’ glee, Mitski wasn’t done. And navigating this dilemma of celebrity only inspired new ideas, many of which are definitely the focus of her latest release, Laurel Hell. The tunes are simple in structure. Many forgo a typical refrain for just back to back verses. Lyrics about escape and abandonment, to and from the people and the career she struggles to maintain. Resentment weighs heavy in some of these themes, like a hardening of the soul, but in these words Mitski also finds a way to cope, to continue loving what she does. The music pushes the synth to the front of the production, swaying between sweet and sad electro pop, with big build ups to some really epic melodies. And of course an album like this wouldn’t be complete without a few 80s style bangers about heartbreak, made specifically for you to dance those feels out. These tracks are where the chorus’ have been hiding. The title comes from a term used when one is stuck in a tangle of laurels. Likely the figurative situation Mitski was in before approaching this record. Hopefully it helped untangle them a bit.

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