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Micah P. Hinson

Born in the southern US town of Memphis, Tennessee, on the day that President Ronald Reagan was shot in an assassination attempt, Micah (pronounced my-kah) Paul Hinson was raised in a Christian fundamentalist household. As a teenager, Hinson and his family moved to Abilene, Texas, where he became a member of the local music scene. It is here, where Micah first met his then muse – a Vogue cover model and widow of a notable local rock star. Introduced to her, and in turn Valium and other narcotics, it was not long before Micah’s muse turned into the ‘Black Widow’ as he now refers to her, and he hit a horrible twist of events. In the Spring of 2000, he was caught forging prescriptions and was sent to county jail – “I ended up losing my car, my home, all my money, my instruments and recording equipment, and basically my entire family”.

At the age of 19, Micah found himself homeless and penniless, wandering from pillar to post, sleeping on friends’ floors. He was eventually forced to declare himself bankrupt and moved into a motel and acquired a mundane telemarketing job. During this period, Micah still managed to write around 30 songs on borrowed instruments and equipment.

Some collaborations are simply destined for greatness. However, the record never loses sight of Micah’s own unique voice – his twisted, dark tales of love and loss are matched only by a cracked vocal and songwriting that belies his mere 22 years. Drawing inspiration from his young, yet eventful life, Micah has managed to create a truly timeless sounding record. With the simplest of bittersweet lyrics, he evokes the strongest of emotions.

With an album brimful of classics in the making, it is difficult to know just what to draw attention towards first! The complex nature of the arrangements means that we are spoilt from the outset. Light and shade is available amongst the heart-rending offerings. Genuine emotion is still available in the hands of some writers that don’t turn it into obvious mush. I Still Remember epitomises the feel of the album, the sense that we can be better as people, if only we can get over our limiting inner demons. “I still remember thinking / how lovely it could be. To hold for eternity / or at least until we fell asleep” (the superbly interwoven vocal duties are shared with The Earlies’ Sarah Lowes). The centrepiece of the album is saved for last with the eight-and-a-half minute epic, The Day Texas Sank To The Bottom of The Sea, rounding off a debut to hold dear and explore on return visits, over and over.