Michael Huff Confronts Loneliness On “Lonesome, Lonesome”

Photo by Clara Yellow

Michael Huff writes songs that beg careful listening. The Oklahoma City-based songwriter (who’s in the midst of a move to Albuquerque), crafts lyrics rich with literary allusion and emotional vulnerability, and wraps his words in complex, often baroque arrangements that rarely go where one might expect.

He’ll release a new album, heck, on June 1. Ahead of heck‘s release, he’s shared “Lonesome, Lonesome,” a mid-tempo folk-adjacent track that at once recalls solo Conor Oberst and early Pavement. Layered vocal harmonies at the chorus add a touch of warmth to the track, the multiple voices serving as a welcome antidote to the loneliness at the heart of the lyrics.

“’Lonesome, Lonesome’ was written to and from loneliness,” Huff says. “This Neko Case song comes to mind where she sings to sorrow itself. ‘Take your own advice,’ she tells it, ‘Hide under the bed and turn out the lights.’ What else – there are words in ‘Lonesome, Lonesome’ about community with other people, but also about the sun. These have been frightening times – maybe that’s always true? – being afraid of nature, and each other. Crazy days, unbearable things. A song, it’s really not enough, but it can be a lot sometimes, for a long time.”

Huff wrote all of the tracks on heck himself, with the exception of “That Look,” which he co-wrote with Allison Laughter. He recorded and produced the album at his home studio in Oklahoma City, with Nashville’s Mark Nevers mixing at Beach House Recording and Cornwall-on-Hudson’s Alan Douches mastering at West West Side Music.

Listen to “Lonesome, Lonesome” below.