M.I.L.K interview for Blacklisted

The smooth island R&B stylings of M.I.L.K

I take myself on a groove tour with Emil Wilk’s as he tells me about his thoughts and process behind his solo musical project M.I.L.K

Published: February 7, 2017Words: J.Scott Stratton & EMIL WILKArtist Link: M.I.L.K

The closest thing that I can think of to metaphorically describe the solo sounds of artist Emil Wilk, a.k.a M.I.L.K, is it’s like a hot tub is for your ears. In other words, that place where not even the world’s most devastating tragedies, or overwhelming life dramas, simply cannot touch. Listening to M.I.L.K’s debut track If We Want To, is tantamount to slowly having your brain marinated in Piná Colada while someone rubs your feet—nothing else matters.

Sharing the most un-Googleable band name in history with a host of other band—some of which are now climbing to a fame of their own—Wilk’s threw caution to the wind and went with something that just felt right to him. And truth be told, why not? Nearly every band name has been talk before, so why not just share the love.
Since releasing the aforementioned single, If We Want To, in 2015, M.I.L.K has been on a steady diet of live gigs throughout Denmark and the U.K, whilst intermittently releasing singles that have been picking up traction across both Danish and International medias.

Personally, I get a 1970’s soul vibe from most of the tracks—although some have been remixed to have a more electronic sound—with a touch of surf sound. If you can imagine if Tom Jones, Anni-Frid Lyngstad and Jimmy Buffet had took a trip down to Margaritaville and got their three-way groove on, the glorious offspring would sound something like M.I.L.K. It’s got a laid-back living room groove that makes you want to shuffle through your house like its cruise ship dance floor, in tighty-whities, cuban-heels and a bathrobe that is far to small.

“When I had to come up with my name I wanted something that felt everyday-ish and institutional at the some time. Very inspired by the dusty feeling of the governmental departments where there’s acronyms for everything, but then at the same time something everyone knows. Like milk.”

I remember seeing the video for If We Want To on NOWNESS well over a year ago, and the song just took me—right out of the gate. But, Wilk’s has since removed that video, and he expressed to me that it didn’t fit the vibe that he was working towards, because he is working towards a larger conceptual idea to correlate with the release of his debut EP. He is thinking grander than just one music video and creating an entire video installation to visually tell the story along with the EP tracks.

M.I.L.K is more than just a simple band to Wilk’s. He sees it as a way for him to unfold ideas and a process. It exist first through the music, of course—created and produced by Wilk’s in it’s digital format and accompanied by four other musicians in it’s stage format—but he expressed to me that the concept will extend beyond the borders of musical influence at tap into other formats.

“It’s all a process. First I had to find my sound – for this purpose the single [If We Want To] was perfect. So now I want to take that sound and unfold it across other mediums as well – so for that I’m creating a gallery exhibition.”

Before grand ideas of world domination or cross-disciplinary gallery take-overs, there comes the music, and Wilk’s has a unique process that he used to draft up his work before he starts calling in favours from friend to help with the production.

“I record these little pieces of melodies into my iphone almost everyday and then when I get into the studio I just scroll through my phone recordings and see if there’s anything that sparks a vibe. If so I’ll fiddle around with the melody ’till it sound proper and then I start to create a production around it.

Other times I write a song over demo-instrumentals from others. For example with colab-songs with other artists. I have a bunch of those type of productions coming out this year. I really like that way of working actually.”

Yet, whatever way it comes out of him, the final result of M.I.L.K’s undeniable groovy tracks are three-and-a-half minutes of pure good times and sunshine, no matter what time of year it is.

If you’re look for some groovy beach vibes in the wake these dreary winter months, slip on a polyester Hawaiian shirt and some white pants, and two-step your way down to Vega on February 11 and let M.I.L.K clear the snow from your eyes and ears.

really hard to describe.. hmmm. don’t know if that makes sense, but I want my songs to feel like a soundtrack for a memory of a memory of some future scenario.

What is your process like? How do you go about creating a song?

It varies a lot.

I record these little pieces of melodies into my iphone almost everyday and then when I get into the studio I just scroll through my phone recordings and see if there’s anything that sparks a vibe. If so I’ll fiddle around with the melody ’till it sound proper and then I start to create a production around it. Other times I write a song over demo-instrumentals from others. For example with colab-songs with other artists. I have a bunch of those type of productions coming out this year. I really like that way of working actually.

Do you produce the work yourself?

Most of the time. But I also get a lot of help from friends on the stuff that I don’t know how to do.

What is the set-up for M.I.L.K during live performances?

Most of the time we are 5 guys on stage. I like big bands, it brings some chaos and good time to the stage. It’s more fun that way.

Can you tell me a little bit about what you have lined up for the foreseeable future?

Later this spring my EP will come out together with a gallery exhibition. I also have a bunch of remixes and features coming out very soon.