2017 Spring/Summer Country Preview: 25 Anticipated Albums, Festivals

From new releases by Angaleena Presley and Jason Isbell to annual blowouts like Stagecoach and CMA Music Festival

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Album: TBA
Release Date: TBA
Texas trio Midland quickly established themselves as something different, something unexpected, in the present country mainstream. Singer Mark Wystrach, guitarist Jess Carson and bassist Cameron Duddy have the rough-around-the-edges look of your favorite road-tested Texas country act, but the sound on their breakthrough single "Drinkin' Problem" is smoothed-out Eighties country that mixes George Strait's traditional twang and Barbara Mandrell's pop-country polish. The group's self-titled EP, released in October, boasted more of the same: pristine three-part harmonies, woozy steel guitars and hooks for days, with none of the aggro rock guitar so prominent on recent country records. It's no wonder then that "Drinkin Problem" sounds so fresh on radio and why their forthcoming full-length, due late summer/early fall, is one of country's most anticipated new releases. J.F.

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