It’s 1997, and you’re in your room, surrounded by Rolling Stone covers plastered to the walls, spinning Ok Computer on your turntable. As the dust pops and the needle skips, you sink into an ethereal dreamscape when “Karma Police” comes on. A similar experience occurs when listening to Boston’s garage rock quartet, Milk.

Definitely not skim, Milk gives 2% more attitude into their edgy 3-track EP than some lengthier recordings. The EP shares a title with the 1997 Jodie Foster film Contact, and while it is unclear whether or not this was intentional, there are definitely some other-worldly vibes going on, particularly in the title track.

In fact, “Contact” is the very song that brought “Karma Police” to mind. Hey, they even repeat the word “radio” a few times in it. Close enough. With echoing, undulating vocals that seem to exist in a galaxy far, far away, the tune clocks in just under five minutes. Steady drums crescendo for five minutes, backed by haunting organ and violin, all tucked into a minor key that sends a slight chill down your spine. But the pleasantly surprising major key resolution at the end ties the whole song together, wrapping it into a neat celestial package.

The other two tracks bring a different flavor. With a sweeter, smoother, honey-like chorus of lighthearted jamming, stumbling piano, collective shouts of “oohs” and “wahoos,” laughter, and ambient additions of pots and pans, “Great Big House” tastes more like familiar folk than garage rock. More strawberry milk than plain. Albeit, there’s still evidence of their grungy, psychedelic roots within.

It’s a tight EP, and genuinely enjoyable for three songs. The variation that’s packed in is impressive in and of itself; and yet, it’s perhaps slightly overly ambitious as well, with all its complexities. Though it’s not the first recording they’ve released, it stands in stark contrast with their older releases. Their 2012 EP, titled Hubba Hubba boasts a sound a la Voxtrotwarm, sad, with tinny guitar. Vocalist Matthew Brady adds Milk’s personality, though, with his velvety tenor, on occasion distorted to give it more of a punk edge. They’ve certainly refined their sound since Hubba Hubba, refining their sound but also settling into their genre. Contact is the perfect cold, tall glass that’s lactose and listener friendly.

Album Review: Milk - Contact
Pros
  • Great production quality and variation
  • Well crafted for its short length
  • Smooth like Jack Daniel’s
Cons
  • Overly ambitious in the complex layering of tracks
  • Short and simple lyrics, easy to get lost in some drawn out lines
  • Reminds you a little TOO MUCH of Radiohead…Thom Yorke, is that you?
7Lactose tolerant

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