Review Summary: What The Midsummer Station lacked in pizzazz, The Midsummer Station - Acoustic EP makes up for in musical quality and provides updates to songs that lacked emotion and gives us new songs that could have made TMS that much better.
Owl City is one of those musical projects you love or hate. Some find his dreamy, surreal lyrics and synth-pop sound to be awe-inspiring while others are immediately turned off by the metaphors and irony placed in his lyrics. Once The Midsummer Station hit shelves last year, we realized Owl City had somewhat abandoned the old way he made music with the extra writers, producers and the more mainstream-pop sound. Is this EP just like The Midsummer Station or does it recount to the olden days of Maybe I'm Dreaming and Ocean Eyes" Let's see.
As soon as the EP starts with Good Time (Acoustic), we're given something that could have easily been put on anything before The Midsummer Station. This remains true throughout the EP. The 3 songs off of The Midsummer Station (Good Time, Shooting Star, Gold) are definitely better than they were on the album. These acoustic versions recall songs such as The Saltwater Room, Vanilla Twilight and what may have been the best and more Owl City-esque track on TMS: Silhouette. The strings and piano help give what were cookie-cutter pop tunes a softer feel that helps make them more refined.
The standout of the 3 is definitely Gold. Doing research, I found that Adam Young didn't even write the original version which explains why it was so barren of Owl City touch. The way he presents this updated version is a complete 180 and like the other 2 tracks, makes all 3 so much better than the original versions. The lyrics haven't changed but vocal melodies have changed and with the added harmonies and background vocals it definitely gives these tracks an edge, which like I said really stands outs on Gold. All 3 are great in their own way: Good Time takes out Carly Rae Jepsen and give us better vocals, Shooting Star is more of a piano ballad now, and Gold combines both to give us a piano driven song with better vocals and instrumentation.
The other 2 songs are B-sides from previous releases titled I Hope You Think of Me and Hey Anna. IHYToM had been played at live shows in the past and small clips of the studio version had floated around the internet for a while now, but Hey Anna was only heard during live performances, one of which I went to and heard this before it was released. What TMS lacked in musical quality, both songs are given to us in an Owl City fashion with bells, synth melodies and basses, and the lyrics are standout on IHYToM which is the better song out of the 2. Both are about a girl but while Hey Anna is just about how she'll be ok, IHYToM is about longing for someone to...well....think of you.
The only problem with this EP str the lyrics to the songs originally off of TMS and arguably Hey Anna, but the instrumentation and music played during these songs destroys that aspect completely. TMS - Acoustic EP is better than TMS and if you like Owl City in any way, shape or form then you should own this.
Owl City - The Midsummer Station - Acoustic EP 4.5/5