Far to Go – Captain Mike & The Totems (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

Although this is the debut single for Captain Mike, he has been a face and fixture on the Minneapolis music scene for years, something which is immediately clear from the quality of the music that he makes. Here he and his musical posse merge country imagery with off-beat pop perkiness, folk moves with some more alt-rock grooves and the result is both refreshingly different and reassuringly accessible. There is something of the new-wave/post-punk feel here, not so much in that Far To Go fits into any such genre but it does echo with the changes which took place as those sounds tore through the pop scene and opened up new ways of writing songs for the mainstream.

The video makes it clear who he has his eyes on as he talks of brighter days to come and analogies of how far there is still to travel but in a more general sense he is an advocate of peace and a fairer society, unity and justice, equality and harmony and who doesn’t need a bit of that in their life at the moment?

It’s a cool song, one which pushes pop boundaries, tempers rock with more chart accessible sounds and blends roots music with gently rebellious attitudes. If there is a middle path between standing by and waiting for others to enact change and storming the barricades, then this is just such an attitude put to music.

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