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Adam James Sorensen’s album, Midwest, is a great folk album that shows off Sorensen’s talent through his strong vocals and deep lyrics. The album is perfect to listen to when you’re in the mood for calm and mellow tunes with great depth to them.
A Chicago native, Sorensen wanted to experience life and music in different cities around the world, so he decided to leave college and do just that. This led him to cities such as Salt Lake City, New York City and various cities around Europe, including Barcelona and Paris. After years in Europe, he decided to move back to Chicago, and his experience doing so is the main inspiration for the album, something that shines through his lyrics. It is evident that his Chicago roots are a big inspiration to the album, as the songs contain references to his home town and his journey back.
“Chicago River,” a definite favorite from the album, is a great example of this. Sorensen sings, “Chicago River, pulling me slow, bring this lonely boy back home to his family, the suburban dream … I’m leaving tomorrow, I’m taking a plane, hoping this time it won’t be the same. When I cross that sea, will I still find me? I’m leaving Chicago before it gets cold, the wind and the memories they get a hold. It’s a game, you see; it’s a hide and seek.”
These lyrics are great not only because you feel his emotion throughout the song, but because they are very relatable and he makes it easy for the listener to connect with them. Although Sorensen sings about his own experience, anyone with a similar kind of experience can relate it and it can trigger a memory or emotion, something a great album needs to have.
Some other favorites from the album are “Suburban Rock and Roll,” “People Start Fires,” and “Winter Song.”
Behind the lyrics and Sorensen’s vocals, the album also provides the work of talented musicians that helped Sorensen build the sound. This includes viola player Eyvind Kang, cello player Christopher Hoffman, mandolin player Don Stiernberg, singer-songwriter Rachel Harrington and Mark Spencer, who is skilled in various instruments. Sorensen also worked with alternative-folk producer Evan Brubaker.
Midwest is a great mix of a rich, easy sound and meaningful lyrics, a combination that any artist strives for. To learn more about Sorensen's life and his music, you can visit his website here.