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Portland songwriter Nick Arneson has had a busy year with the creation and release of his EP MidLifeCrisis. This highly impressive collection of songs showcases an artist whose significant asset is his way with words. He has an honest and fearless songwriting style which have a lot of personal elements included.

Each track from MidLifeCrisis does not fail to grab the listeners attention but “Once” and “Try” stand out the most. “Once” is an interesting story about him talking to himself while “Try” is a love story for his wife whom he describes as his rock.

Arneson does not seem to know how to stop creating, his momentum has resulted in a new track called “Ride with You”. He has described this as a “start in a new direction, both lyrically and metaphorically”.

As the song begins, the mood is set with a soft looping riff and drums. Arneson vocals then come in with the lines “I wanna ride with you / All night long / I wanna feel like I’m / Part of your favorite song / Sky so blue / Are times not long / I wanna ride with you / All night long”. The music continues with a similar groove with the addition of some great moments on the guitar. However, this song is all about the vocals and the lyrics that are shared.

The story is about the trials of being in a relationship and not giving up even when things get tough. Arneson sets the stage when he sings “If you don’t care / Why should I / Exhausting to always have to try / You can’t keep hiding / And you can’t keep lying / Pretending to understand why”.

But as the song heads towards its finale, Arneson tells the subject of the story to sort themselves out. He does so with words that get straight to the point “Don’t take this shit so seriously / Get your shit together / Get your shit together”.

“Ride With You” is an impressive track that is a great way to cap his year. However, he is already looking to 2019 by planning more new releases. If this single is anything to go by, then we can expect a new and exciting chapter for his music.



From his recently released album MidLifeCrisis, we are bringing you the premiere of Portland, Oregon indie artist Nick Arneson’s new track “Once.” Characterizing himself as a “restless” artist, he’s not content with just sitting still, resting on his laurels and putting life on cruise control. His wife and two kids keep him busy enough, so it’s a wonder he still has the time to focus so intently on music. His songs have the backbone of a musician obsessed with rhythm and movement, something undoubtedly spurred by the fact that only started writing around the age of 30.

Nick began writing a short EP that he thought that he would put out there to see if it gained some traction, but he decided to scrap it altogether. He was almost immediately dissatisfied with the somewhat finished project, attempting to mix it all himself which he found sounded quite sloppy. Writing Midlife Crisis became an obsession as Nick was so laser focused that he spent every night for two months working away tirelessly, most nights not finishing until well after midnight. What emerged is a collection of very well thought out, personal songs that he hopes people can find a way to relate to. If you’d like to download a copy of Midlife Crisis, you can do so, right here.

Commenting on “Once”, Arneson left us with these thoughts: “This song emerged during a particularly gnarly hangover - the line ‘I won’t let you drag me down with you’ came after allowing exactly that happen. It’s a song about fighting the urges that constantly push us to stay up too late, drink too much and generally have too much fun. I used to think there was no such thing as too much fun, though at 39 my body is telling me otherwise. I recently quit the sauce, so this song now has a different meaning than when I wrote it. Like all of my songs, it’s meaning is deeper than this surface level explanation, much of it within the noises I’ve created to align with the lyrics, though I like to leave some ambiguity for the listener to interpret individually.”



Very rarely does an artist surface and immediately conveys a sense of ominous beauty. Storming the stage and studios, this is the feat the Portland, Oregon roots musician Nick Arneson pulls off here. The young 30-something singer-songwriter is set to release his new album MidLifeCrisis this Friday, with a collection of songs that runs the gamut of cross-pollinating genres, bending each one to create something distinctively unique. In advance of his new album, Nick shares his new song “Once” which is beautifully haunting and magical at the same time. This is what Nick has to say about the track:

“This song is me talking to me. “Night Nick” as I jokingly refer to the side of me that tends to come out after dark. Quitting drinking allows me to look from a different perspective – the voice is a strong one, and this song is all about facing it down. “Alone and scared with that fire in your eyes.” It also revisits a common theme throughout the album of inertia and movement – something intrinsically tied to staying out too late and taking too much. This song has one of my favorite lines on the album – “the notes you hear won’t make a sound if you don’t move.” Obvious but effective, which is the best kind of lyric.“ – Nick Arneson



Portland songwriter Nick Arneson will drop a new album, called MidLifeCrisis, on August 17.

Arneson cites the following musical influences: rock and roll, the 1970s, weed, reverb, alcohol, drums. Bands that make him feel things: The Beatles, Tom Petty, The War on Drugs, Television, Talking Heads, Townes Van Zandt, Hank Williams, Led Zeppelin, Queens of the Stone Age, Soundgarden, early Elvis, Roy Orbison, Chuck Berry, Ray Charles… to name a few.

Stylistically, Arneson falls into the indie rock category, merging layered harmonics to imbue his music with emotion and passion. Topically, he touches on subjects he describes as “real life, adult shit.”

To promote the album, Arneson announced a series of invite-only “Live From The Barn” shows, which will be streamed for those outside the Portland area. The Barn is where Arneson recorded, produced, and mixed MidLifeCrisis.

The album comprises seven tracks, starting off with “End,” a cool, jazz-flavored indie-rock number. The song is upbeat, coruscating with smooth, creamy rhythmic elements, and Arneson’s dulcet yet evocative tones. “Once” opens with a dreamy psychedelic flow and throbbing drums. The ethereal texture of the music is deliciously infectious, accented by shimmering harmonics and floating, drifting background vocal harmonies.

Other highlights on MidLifeCrisis include “Try,” a measured, flowing tune with tender suffusions of sonic hues and a scrumptious bassline. Arneson’s impassioned voice reflects strident urgency and aching sensations. “Pop Song” exudes dark bluesy flavors, oozing with wicked flavors. I love the vocal harmonies rising from the backdrop, like Sirens keening for Ulysses.

“Inertia” is my favorite song on the album because of its punk-lite flavor. Arneson’s voice mirrors biting tones with serrated timbres, as well as a fabulous dark sensuality. The last track is “Outsider,” a tune reminiscent of Steve Miller covering a Dave Matthews song, bluesy and sweltering with sinuous colors.

MidLifeCrisis is excellent indie rock, different enough to keep your attention, yet not experimental. Nick Arneson is supremely talented, with a yummy sensual voice, able to infuse his compositions with emancipated colors and affable sonic surfaces.

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I friggen love this. The music is pretty good but the real-ness and transparency you share make it reach a higher level. I truly feel the best way to build a fanbase now is to connect with the listener like this. Maybe it hits me even more since I am a 43 year old with 2 kids and a career separate from music as well. Perhaps we could set up an interview for the website.