It’s all in the words this time.
“The clouds move over Pontiac skies
Their silent thunder matches mine
I know this feeling from long ago
I wonder if it’s gone now I know
So when she calls don’t send her my way
When it hurts you’ll know it’s the right thing
Michigan’s in the rearview now,
Keep your hands where I can see them
You took the words right out of my mouth
When you knew that I would need them
What am I supposed to do now
The Milk Carton Kids, Prolouge
The rest of the album also seems very beautiful – and there are lots of references to states (which I love), with a track I haven’t heard called “New York” and a Minnesota shout out in the chorus of “No Hammer to Hold.” Truly, the words are the star of this album, and everything has amazing, amazing harmonies to highlight that. Very Simon & Garfunkel. Everything is underscored by soft chord structures spruced up with some more of those twang-folks riffs, as well some really pleasant and gentle picking.
It’s a soft-sounding album but most of the lyrics are anything but; they expose so much hurt and regret and longing. They sing on “One Goodbye”: “The things you wanted/the things you would/the things that haunt/I never could.”
“Michigan,” though, sends arrows through my heart, every time. Please put this in my biopic.