The music world has plenty of varying personalities that make it so diverse. If you look around, you’re bound to see multiple differences away from the surface within the profession. However, as many differences as artists have, the one thing all have in common is drive and a strong work ethic. Coming from a B market city like Houston, Texas you don’t come across a ton of people who will literally do whatever they have to do to make a career in the music industry. No, not that “casting couch” scenario, just do what it takes to build an audience, build a brand and even build their skill set on a professional level. So six years ago when I first met Michelle Miears, I was astounded at how much time she put into the smallest details. She had the rare work ethic people who write about music rarely see in B markets, which is why I chose to interview her for my podcast Self Released Songs.
Back then she was fronting an electro-pop trio named BLSHS who had a solid following for a group with only two releases. Those small details like lyrics, appearance and what a live show for the band should look like were all things the singer learned how to cultivate. After BLSHS disbanded it was no time for Miears to return with a solo project aptly titled MIEARS. An EP Who Will Save You? soon followed, and the flood of work the producer had put in was just as astounding. Not knowing what she needed to do to produce her own songs, she learned how to on her own. She wrote her own arrangements and beats, and the pop hooked EP showed that hard work still means something.
When the festivals and the album cycle ended, I knew that MIEARS would return to writing and we’d see a new album in a year or so between live performances. As you hear in the podcast though, the album was delayed due to personal reasons. With that though, that album Hanging On shows the depths at which MIEARS has gone to since her debut EP. The production and instrumentation is on point. The sugary sparkle in the songs is gone. And what you’re left with is a deeply personal album that’s light years ahead of a lot of the genre. The songwriting, the arrangements and even her vocal style had all changed for the better. All from dedication and hard work to getting better and improving her craft.
Songs like “Hiding in the Dark” and “Creep” have little pieces of pop sprinkled with dark electronica. The vocals are done in a way that’s mystifying and pleasing. “Empty Love” and “Oh How” feel like notes on a page torn from personal experiences without lulling the listener to sleep. And again, MIEARS finds a way to up her game across the board while showing that attention to detail and a drive to build on an already impressive career are a daily aspect in making music a career.
Hanging On is available to purchase on a limited edition vinyl directly from Bandcamp. The album is also available to stream on all streaming sites or to purchase in all digital outlets. MIEARS is set to perform at Satellite Bar on April 04 in Houston, TX. Self Released Songs is available to stream on this website or on Anchor.
Image Credits: Photo by Sedric Acevedo.