>>EAR0019 - Milieu - Stray Trains EP
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- "Stray Trains, by Milieu was recently released on Earstroke. Milieuís work is generally quite warm and even pastoral (as Iím sure electronica fans would call it), and in this work we see him sharpening his creative talons somewhat: itís well produced, the arrangements are well balanced, and Milieu retains originality whilst staying true to infleunces.

Stray Trains has moments when you hear something familiar: perhaps a little bit of early Warp, Boards of Canada, or a few brief moments of mainstream house or techno. Just as Milieu is drawing back the veil that hides his influences, however, he distracts us with something original that obscures the view of his creative inspiration. Thereís an interview on his site where he mentions some of his influences:

'Well the Pumpkins will always be my favorite, mainly because Corgan is such a fucking genius, and i really canít better explain it.'

Smokestacks has analogue-synth roots with a slightly distorted bass drum, interesting old skool Roland percussion, and then modulation of the bass drum and backwards kicks that feel quite unique. Itís a good track, and like the rest, not overdrawn. Milieu doesnít feel the need to overburden us with repetition, or any particular mood. Playground Memories, for instance, seems solemn at first, but quickly diverges into something warm and whimsical.

As Stray Trains draws to a close, with Motorbike Trail and Drain, things become more retrospective. Interestingly, Drain is credited with ďMilieu + Meadows & LabyrinthsĒ.

By the way, I hope youíre not confused about the name: Iím not Milieu!"

- Alex Young, Milieu

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