Arizona based artist Michael Coleman is releasing music under the name, See Your Shadow. His latest single, Missing West Virginia has been bursting out of various speakers and headphones here at the Send Me Your Ears studio today!
“Missing West Virginia’ is one of the early collaborations between Coleman and See Your Shadow writing
partner, J. Richard Murray. It is a splendid example of modern country music. Missing West Virginia is a song about missing home, about going back to your roots, and about knowing where you came from and, if you’ve moved away, wondering whether things are the still the same in your small little home town.
It’s typical country subject fodder, but in the case of See Your Shadow, it really is done to perfection. This really is a classic example of good country music. This is just the kind of track that a country music fan will hear for the first time and instantly feel at home. It makes you feel comfortable. There’s something very inviting and warm about Missing West Virginia and we feel that this artist has some really promising potential to be well received by US country music charts. Reading the biography, we can see that this songwriting team have had some very credible success working together and the chemistry in the writing and delivery of the song is undeniable.
We particularly loved the line “thinking about her brings a smile back to his face” where the vocalist is thinking about his home town almost as a living and breathing entity. This particular line tells you everything you need to know about how people who love their home town feel.
See Your Shadow looks to be a songwriting collaboration, so we can’t quite tell who plays what on this track, and indeed who the vocalist is, as from the See Your Shadow website, See Your Shadow is a collective of musicians and vocalists (we think). Either way, the vocals are crystal clear, suitably country and twangy and sit up front. As with all great country music, the instrumentation is almost second to the story telling and it makes sense that the vocals take centre stage throughout this track.
There’s some gorgeous and subtle harmonies throughout the track and who doesn’t love a good old bit of banjo picking? The drums are bright and suitably smacky. The instruments are well placed, clear and bright and the whole track is just oozing with life and positive energy.
About half way through, we’re treated to a little more banjo picking and then into a solo instrument that, if we had to find something at all to critique about this song, was a little too quiet for a lead instrument. That said, everything else about this beautifully written, scored and well produced track just screams hit material.
Missing West Virginia is an instant hit for fans of contemporary country music. It is a strong, comfortable, song which makes the listener feel homesick for a little slice of small town America. We’re loving this and we hope to hear much much more from See Your Shadow’s artistic director, Michael Coleman.