I Wish My Brother Rob Was Here

Joel Frieders | October 31, 2011

When people say they're "dropping" a "mixtape" I'm usually leery of giving it anything more than a skim because I always interpreted it as kind of a half-assed attempt at releasing music. It's like, either go all the way and put out an EP or an LP or even a fucking single, but don't fucking give me thirty second or a minute and a half shit tracks that you aren't happy with in the first place.

If I wanted lazy music, I'd make it my fucking self.

That said, I've been proven wrong. And I'm not only okay with it, but I'm seriously excited about other people hearing this dude.

Milo, a college student from the wilderness of Northern Wisconsin, is a fucking nerd with a philosophy major to trudge through. Fortunately, for his grades and my ears, the dude can write his dick off. Combining scatterbrained wordplay with downright thoughtful prose, whoever the Fuck gave this dude my email address deserves a handjob from jesus.

There were a few moments throughout this "mixtape" that I immediately started the song over thinking I was hearing something by mistake. No mistake. Guy recites things that not only make me laugh, and on one specific instance fucking cry, but thought provoking would be a fucking underfuckingstatement. Eloquently quirky, while both calmly and evenly literary, this muthafucker is exactly what I need in my music collection. He's the hip hop love child of Serengeti and Open Mike Eagle and AWOL One but with the college education of, well, me.

There was a moment at the beginning of I Wish My Brother Rob Was Here where I wasn't sure if I could get past the DIY production, and the dorm-room-studio and the seemingly bored delivery of the protagonist. But like some other SYFFAL submissions in the past year, once you take a step to the side and not only see something for what it is, you can start looking at who created it and see them for what they could be. This prick Milo has the fucking world stuffed in his boxer shorts. If he so chooses to use words for a living, I think his biggest hurdle will be to either go all in or make it a hobby. Talent isn't an issue.

The subject matter of I Wish My Brother Rob Was Here nags at me in a way that I can only attribute to simple empathy. The tone of the second half of the song Just Us explores the fresh bruising around the healing wound of losing a good friend just a few months ago, and speaking from experience, creation is one of the basic ways we repair ourselves. Everything Milo says regarding missing his friend Rob is uncomfortably honest, but so fucking genuine it literally took the breath out of me.

One Lonely Owl is by far my favorite track, and I've repeated it's first nearly two minutes more in these past two days than any track in the past two months. It's poetic, flighty, again honest and hurting, but the song itself acts like a kid would when confronted with the reality that it is creating something fucking beautiful. Like if I catch my oldest song singing to himself, and it's fucking bringing a tear to my eye awesome, and he suddenly takes notice of my attention, he turns the moment into a farce, a joke, nothing to see here. Milo does the same here, and whether or not it was intentional, it still kills me every time. He had something for two minutes, noticed we were paying attention, and then kicked in a corny hip hop beat and went back to being Milo the goof.

Again, whether it's intentional or accidental, Milo is on to something. His amazingly crafty and intelligent writing skills are definitely driving the boat, while his bored "oh hey I just thought of something" delivery sits shotgun and hands him cup after cup of herbal tea. I'm both fascinated and honored to have heard this when I did.

One last note, the chorus on the track Super Happy Sunshine Fun Club is something I would fucking love to see performed live. I absofuckinglutely adore anything that stands up to the rampant homophobia in hip hop and I think the direction and humor of this track might actually get through to people before they step in the pile of shit that is going along with the crowd because there's more of them than there are of you.

Plus, dude drops Omar Little's name at the end of it. Wire references will get you everywhere.