Music Industry News Network [10-03-2017]

Single Review: Michael Askin - "Nashville"


Michael Askin is a alt-country and indie/acoustic rock singer from New Brunswick, New Jersey. He’s out with a new EP called Road by the River, with one of those tracks being called “Nashville,” that showcases his skills perfectly. Askin is also a songwriter who weaves his experiences and ideaologies into interesting songs that give you a taste of who he is and where his passions and beliefs are. His music is gentle and evokes emotion and thought.

“Nashville” is a slow song that starts with simple acoustic chords which provide a gentle base with a twang that is expected from country songs. It perfectly nestles Askin’s voice and the subject matter. While there isn’t anything that really stands out in terms of the guitar work, it is still solid and leaves you with a nostalgic feeling, one that’s sad and bittersweet. Askin’s voice is nice, if not particularly unique. It sounds like your generic country artist- smooth and clear, with a signature twang that is a must for the genre. It sounds right at home with the music and the lyrics, even if they’re about him not fitting in with the musical world of Nashville, Tennesee.


I used to be a huge country fan when I was a child. Not so much anymore, though I do accept talent where I see it, and that extends to country artists. Acoustic rock isn’t very high on my list either, but this song and Askin’s approach is calming enough to give it a higher ranking than my initial biases would typically allow. If anything, it’s the emotions his music brings out that brings out more love rather than the sound itself.

When I hear country music, I go back to my childhood- to weekends with my dad and family get togethers. I had this dream of going to Nashville and becoming a part of ‘that world’ due to some idealized nonsense that made me think it was some sort of paradise, instead of another city. This song speaks to that part of me- Askin feels like an outsider in Nashville, yet he loves it all the same. There’s a barrier that separates him from belonging. Maybe that’s what makes it seem magical, the inherent exclusivity. Much like other iconic cities (New Orleans comes to mind, though that feels more like home to me than Nashville ever could), it’s lovely to visit, but it takes a certain type of person to make it there, to thrive and be on the inside of it’s own world.

“Nashville” is a simple song that I would recommend to country fans and those who like acoustic tunes and soothing voices. Askin is an interesting artist who looks outside of the norm for inspiration and it works. His EP, Road by the River, is worth a listen in its entirity so you can get a good look at who he is and what his music is about. I look forward to seeing what else he puts out in the future.

Victoria Patterson


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