EP Review: Milo – ‘things that happen at day’
The delicate balance between personal/musical growth and nostalgic familiarity is always at the mercy of fans and critics. Loyal listeners want to have their attention maintained through innovation, or at the very least improvement, yet don’t want to be alienated either. Although with an MC like Milo, peculiarity plays a conscious role in the philosophical nerdcore sub-genre he occupies. Obscure cultural references and ambiguous social commentary suddenly make a word like “alienated” appear trivial in the context of Milo’s music.
On the new EP things that happen at day, Milo’s progression as a rapper is present with a vastly improved flow and production teeming with atmospheric beats and serene soundscapes. From the very first track, “sweet chin music (the fisher king’s anthem),” the energetic lyrics are delivered with a gusto that showcases a happier Milo then the typically apathetic one we’re used to. The stripped down beat and tranquil sampled vocal compliment the refreshingly optimistic disposition he takes on for the track.
The following track, “almost cut my hair (for Crosby)” continues that initial optimism with Milo uncharacteristically spitting the aggressive line “Here’s a game I no longer find entertaining/ Seeking validation from internet strangers/ I’ll two-step across your carcasses” which juxtaposes with a line on his last project: “I’ve never pressed a tape to a laser disc/ But I still managed to make Nerdcore Now’s list/ You may have seen me on theneedledrop.” This drastic shift in the irrelevancy of other people’s opinion from Milo is quite significant and one that makes for better music because, contrary to traditional hip-hop mentality, Milo will forever adhere to the balance of modesty vs. arrogance.
By the time the song ”folk-metaphysics” hits, self-deprecation resumes position at the helm of Milo’s paradoxical battle between himself with the proclamation of several goals that can’t help but remind me of a New Year’s Resolution list; perhaps it is the early year release and scribbling noise permeating the back ground that proposes the idea. The contradiction arrives at the doubtful chorus of the song with Milo confessing “I don’t make promises I can’t keep/ Which is why I don’t make promises ever” even though he made many promises to himself in the prior verse. As the EP continues a bipolar Milo humors a back-and-forth approach to his euphoric, ambitious side and the existential, cynical counterpart. The sporadic nature of Milo’s psyche may be unorthodox, but that’s the very thing that makes his music so human and relatable.
things that happen at day is as unapologetic as it is stoic. Milo continues to fuel his music with his own insecurities and perspectives but does so with no shame. The production is as subtle yet conscious as the lyrics are inconsistently honest. Milo is definitely growing as an artist and a person but the point at which that growth is condemned by the personal uncertainty that serves as the foundation for his music remains to be seen.