An Audience With You Know Who?

A few words with Milyoo.

I’ve read that your name Milyoo is meant as an homage to “milieu”, a French word hinting at a mixture of sorts (though actually defined as one’s surroundings, esp. of a social or cultural nature). With that in mind can you elaborate a little on the influences that are guiding the melange of sounds you are creating?

Milyoo: Piles of stuff really. Although I hesitate to reach back too far historically... mostly because I can't remember it as well as the present. But I try to reach back. Old mixtapes and the record collection.

Well you have a history in house music right?

Milyoo: Right, a history. I started DJing in about 97-98. Deep house mostly. My record collection definitely reflects this, but I listen to so much new music daily that my influences are a mess to be honest. I'm not trying to be intentionally evasive, I actually just find the whole thing very thick and without any definite point to grab onto.

So does that diversity of influences play a part in the way you build your tracks? I mean it wouldn’t be a stretch to call some of your tracks and demos, experimental.

Milyoo: Absolutely. Hearing something new (and good) compels me to get into the studio and sort it out. My musical 'training' however isn't sufficient to bite all the way, but I definitely riff off everything I hear. Almost all the time. Rarely do I find myself with a singular sound I want to push, though I am a fan of (re)imagining house music at the moment.

No doubt, that Sepalcure vibe is hitting me hard at the moment.

Milyoo: Gah. Yeah I love that album. I'm also feeling West Norwood Cassette Library and Oriol for similar reasons. The house vibe is great. The best I think. It’s about dancing and sex. Win/Win. Oh, and love I guess. A holy trinity of sorts.

I noticed very early on in your tracks a real soulful house feeling backed up with the use of some vocals. Is that something that you think about when you are making tracks?

Milyoo: Yeah I kinda feel obligated to have vocals. I dunno. I like to sing along? That and my wife shrugs her shoulders at anything without vocals, so I toss them in to keep the household stable :) Seriously though, vocals, I like them.

Speaking of households, you live in Kentucky right?

Milyoo: For now yeah.

Is there much of a scene locally for the kind of music you are producing?

Milyoo: The 'scene' from my recent survey is a mixture of brostep and straight up house. That said, there are some very talented producers around here. A kid named Amtrak, Company Processing and a duo called Refinery are all quite good. So the answer is... no :) Not at the moment.

A kind of splendid isolation then?

Milyoo: That's an amazing euphemism. Consider it stolen. Ha.

Does the lack of a real vibrant local scene help keep you glued to the studio then? Because you have been posting tracks up to the cloud at a serious pace?

Milyoo: Yup. A little. I'm really obsessive too. If I'm not out rock climbing I'm glued to reason/record.

Give us a little run down on Love Studios then for the tech heads out there.

Milyoo: Regular Macbook, MPD 32, Novation remote SL, Launchpad, EMU E4XT sampler, Korg Elecribe A, tons of percussion bits, decks, tape deck... and an extra widescreen monitor, totally essential. Reason/Record and Ableton 8.

You fairly recently started using Ableton 8 right? Was that switch for arranging purposes?

Milyoo: Well for the live show mostly, and sometimes I'll do an effects pass/master on a track. But for the most part I'm still working in the Propellerheads environ.

So your first 12" has just dropped on the OPIT records. Have you been happy with the reception so far?

Milyoo: Happy would be an incredible understatement. I'm thrilled. Overjoyed. Ecstatic. Etc. The list of people who like the release is uber-humbling. Having a pile of artists you adore, like your music, is really really really awesome.

Astro awesome?

Milyoo: Double astro awesome. I'm sometimes hyperbolic. Obviously. No, it's really cool. But odd if only because things here (my house/studio/city) are completely the same. The whole thing seems very virtual from where I'm sitting. I mean, I'm having a release party tonight at my house. I invited 9 people, but I'm thinking it will top out at 8:) Guest listed all of them.

It's funny you say that though, because it was through the virtual world of the net and Soundcloud that you hooked up with Subeena who is behind OPIT records.

Milyoo: Yeah well my entire musical being is virtual interwebbage, which is a shame because I'm way more charming in person :)

Well you must have made some in roads, other than just on the net, considering the BBC1 Mary Anne Hobbs guestmix and all.

Milyoo: Basically everything hinged on the Opit release. People liked it and I happen to have enough tracks sitting on my hardrive and enough time to reach out to people i like to form useful and inspiring musical relationships. I'm definitely not a spammer, but if someone is doing something i like i don't hesitate to fire up a virtual conversation with them.

Well, any plans to take the Milyoo live experience on the road? The U.K.? or even a visit here to the emerald isle to hook up with Shatterfreak?

Milyoo: Yes, yes and definitely yes. I'm slowly working out a regional gig thing in the States, but it’s really difficult to make inroads here. And i'm totally planning to head your way next spring or sooner if demand/money allows. I talk to Aidan (Shatterfreak) dozens of times a day, and I feel like I need to get over to Dublin to see if he's really as cool as he says he is, and if he's not.... I'm going to have to torch the entire country. Ethics.

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