Two and a half years after their debut LP On the Rocks introduced the world to Midland’s infinitely fun, boot-stompin’ Eighties-country-in-an-Instagram-filter sound, their new single finds the trio not planning to leave the honky-tonk anytime soon. “Mr. Lonely” is a mischievous, Texas dance hall-inspired tune in the spirit of Eddie Rabbitt written by the band (singer Mark Wystrach, guitarist Jess Carson and bassist Cameron Duddy) alongside Shane McAnally and Josh Osborne.
Complete with a pedal steel solo from Paul Franklin and some boogie guitar, “Mr. Lonely” is a tongue-in-cheek ode to embracing the role of the being someone’s late-night phone call when their other date went south. “I’m the number that you know by broken heart,” sings Wystrach. “I ain’t Mr. Right, I’m Mr. Right now.”
If their first single, “Drinkin’ Problem,” was the woozy ballad for high ABV heartbreak, “Mr. Lonely,” from their forthcoming sophomore LP, is its line-dancing, on-the-rebound cousin. And if country radio plays it like they have the group’s other releases, it’s likely to be one of the heavier doses of traditional instrumentation to come across the airwaves in years, where raging rock-inspired guitar solos and canned drums are much more commonplace than the steel stylings of Time Jumper Franklin.
“The thing that keeps us sane on the road is working on new material,” Wystrach told Rolling Stone Country last year. “Our soundchecks are basically a daily therapy-slash-rehearsal when you have been on the road for two years straight.”
Midland, nominated for Group of the Year and Video of the Year at the 54th ACMs, will continue their headlining Electric Rodeo Tour through the spring.