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Met a Man on Top the Hill - EP

The Midway State

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Album Review

Somewhere right now, there's a teenaged girl swooning over Nathan Ferraro's handsome smile and huge mop of hair. In fact, he seems like the perfect candidate to take former American Idol contestant Sanjaya Malakar's place on the cover of Teen Beat magazine — especially considering that his band, the Midway State, was a featured artist on MTV's e2 and their near-hit "Unaware" was played on an episode of The O.C. The band has targeted their core audience and it could be merely a matter of time before Ferraro makes the transformation from sheepish 20-year-old songwriter to poster-boy pin-up. Met a Man on Top of the Hill, the group's second EP, further explores the singer's marketable sensitivity with romantic lyrics and Ben Folds-lite indie-piano-rock ballads. Their overall sound is similar to the Fray or New London Fire with Coldplay undertones, especially evident in the delayed guitar licks, and although the songs are unchallenging, their harmonious hooks are brilliantly huge and blatant. These tunes are undeniably memorable, and ideal for contemporary or adult-alternative radio play. For a critical listener who is paying close attention, there isn't a lot of underlying substance, but each track has a massive chorus that is easy to grab and hard to shake, and some would say that is the key element that makes a perfect pop song. "A Million Fireflies" makes an unpredictable turn with a sudden key change and a heavier, but not quite as heavy as Jeff Buckley guitar part. Other than that, the songs don't take many chances. But that's not the point of a band like this. Their goal is to crossover and become commercially viable, and they undoubtedly have humongous commercial potential. In fact, any of these four songs could make a mark on the charts, but the obvious breakthrough choice is "Change for You," which is the epitome of catchy and has the word "single" written all over it in gold glitter. Maybe even platinum.

Biography

Formed: 2002 in Collingwood, Ontario, Canada

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s

With a memorable shaggy afro and a humble but charismatic demeanor, Midway State's piano-playing frontman Nathan Ferraro made a conscious decision at an early age that he was going to take a shot at breaking their piano emo-rock outfit into the music industry. Growing up in a musical family with seven siblings, he started writing songs at age 12 and a few years later, while attending high school in Collingwood, Ontario, he paired up with longtime pal and drummer Daenen Bramberger and started performing...
Full bio
Met a Man on Top the Hill - EP, The Midway State
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