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The best kept secret in music


"Defiance vs. Circumstance"

Rap saved metal from the big hair, spandex, and histrionic yodeling of the '80s and early '90s. But what will save it from the hard-rhyming horde who made a brace of growled couplets de rigueur in every nu metal hit? Given the success Madison's Middleworld have motivating the richly produced tracks of Defiance vs. Circumstance with grooving, prog-derived rhythm work, sampling and layer after layer of heavily processed guitars, the next hard-rock renaissance may have a lot less to do with testosterone-stoked aggression and a lot more with the focused expression of expansive musical visions.
This deftly realized album is a compex mix of ambient guitars, urgent-yet-tuneful vocals and admirably precise drumming. From the suggestive metaphysical opus "Pictures and Words" to the chunkier "Track 11," Middleworld demonstrate again and again that, unlike many of their peers, they're equal to a wide range of sonic strategies. Even bold departures from metal formula like the extended meditative passages of the 10-minute-plus "The Way" maintain a measured vitality thanks to the thoughtful interplay between drummer Matt Schmidt and bassist Kevin McDonnell. Main vocalist Carson Lawrence is always the center of the action, and in this case it's not a question of some anonymous screamer hogging the mike. Lawrence can sing, and his tendency to elongate most passages with his melodic moan adds depth to even the simplest lyric.
It's taken nine years and several personnel changes, but Middleworld have produced a debut full-length CD that trumps a whole lot of the national competition. - The Isthmus-Tom Laskin-2005

"Middleworld and Dafino dual cd release party"

This was more an event than a rock show. The Annex was packed with sweaty raging and heavy tone and the crowd clearly appreciated the concentrated energy that each of these bands brought to the bill. Though this was undoubtedly Middleworld's event, the strength of the lineup kept the place buzzing for hours on end.
Middleworld has spent several years and countless gigs preparing for this night and it showed. From the first note, Middleworld was sizzling with passion, tearing through each track with abandon and leaving the crowd screaming. The samples mixed with tasty keyboard licks and fiery percussion helped to create an exhilarating and utterly successful show.
Middleworld were all grins as they closed the night, knowing that they accomplished everything that they set out to do. In one set, they justified the hype, proving that their talent and sound are creating fans at every turn. However, the success of this night was about the variety and intensity, offering a packed house five talented and diverse bands hand-picked by Middleworld, along with two brand-new CDs of inspired mayhem. Dafino and Middleworld, along with their supporting cast, made their mark and left the people thrilled and thirsty for more. - Rick's Cafe-Tim Thompson-2005


In a time when everything from "solid rock" to "new rock" is mashed up into a familiar structure, content, and attitude, Middleworld deliver a landscape of stratospheric melodies and emotively driven arrangements. You cannot just passively consume this music; YOU MUST BECOME A PART OF IT! - The Capitol Times-Cory Divine (Birth of Tragedy)2004


"Learning to Swim"- 6 song EP- 1999
"A Meaningless Series of Moments"- 5 song EP- 2000
"Remnants of the Sky"- 5 song b-side/live EP- 2001
"Defiance vs. Circumstance"- full-length album- 2005

Downloads available online-
May be heard on independent and comercial radio stations throughout the nation-


Feeling a bit camera shy


"Expect soundscapes that creep eerily, soar beautifully, and groove brutally. It's music that forces you to SIT UP AND LISTEN!" kevin samuel-hightide music.

Middleworld began in 1996 with founding members Marc Claggett and Matt Schmidt. In a constant progression of songwriting and the struggle for perfection, Middleworld recorded 3 EPs while seeking out the most qualified and creative musicians. The current and final line-up completes Middleworld's vision, which has been years in the making.

Throughout these years, Middleworld has played countless shows around the midwest, and is constantly building up their large and diverse fanbase. What one may not expect is the extremely intense live show and endless passion that Middleworld pours into their creations.
What makes Middleworld's music so special? The contrast and depth of Middleworld's art is what sets them apart. The songs are catchy enough to captivate the average (non-musician) comercial radio listener, but complicated and unpredictable enough to entice the professional musician. Explosive intensity that demands attention and trance-like melodies and rhythms create a wall of sound which pushes and pulls at ones senses.
Middleworld recently released their new full-length album to a sold out crowd in their hometown, and is now promoting and continuing to dedicate their lives to their musical purpose.
Presently, focus is being directed on finding the individuals within the music industry who believe in the artistic vision of the group, and are both willing and able to assist in exposing the music to a larger audience.