“There are million and one troubadours who ...think this stuff is easy. There aren’t many as interesting as this. “Rusted” is the type of record that makes true sense when it’s you and the darkness of the small hours with everything you regret for company.”
The Next Life is here
West’s full length debut The Next Life is the culmination of a personal and musical growth since he first started performing as a solo artist in 2016.
From Rock Ferry, Wirral in the North West of England and inspired by the likes of Kris Kristofferson, Blind Willie Johnson, Son House, Johnny Cash and Howlin’ Wolf, Mike picked up his acoustic guitar, writing, in his unique style, songs that weaved between Country and Folk, Hard Rock and Blues and began performing across the UK and Europe, playing alongside diverse artists like Shawn James, Amigo the Devil, Chris Shiflett, Michele Stoddart, Tony Wright, The Plott Hounds, Blackwater Conspiracy and Jason Eady as well as playing Metal and Rock Festivals such as LoveRocks or Rock & Blues Custom Fest or more Traditional and Roots orientated festivals such as Dark Holler and WonkyDonk or Belgium’s Picking Bones.
A walking dichotomy of genres and styles, West has found himself accepted by music fans from all walks of life with the tongue in cheek slogan of Not Country Enough. Not Blues Enough. Not Folk Enough. Too Heavy, capturing the essence of his music and live shows. His grounded storytelling and existential lyricism combined with the driving rhythms of his guitar have helped Mike build a reputation as an honest and raw musician who can captivate crowds wherever he plays.
Over 3 years since the release of his E.P Rusted, a raw, one take, three mics recording that captured his songs in their purest forms, The Next Life elevates Mike West’s work to fully realised songs in a way they haven’t been heard before. With ethereal violin and haunting pedal steel soaring over vocals that show the full range of West’s voice from a restrained whisper to guttural roar and all underpinned by his guitar, this record is the next step in his already eventful career to continue to establish himself as one of the UK’s most prominent Alt-Country artists.
Photos by Georgia Flynn Creative