Neil Milton is an experienced Warsaw-based Scottish indie-pop songwriter. He played in Scottish post-punk / post-rock Troika or Polish post-rock The Frozen North. After the bands split up, he composed and recorded mostly modern classical, ambient and experimental music. Earlier this year Milton returned with his debut single, and September 14 marks the release of his debut EP Singing As You Leave on his own label Too Many Fireworks.
Milton’s takes what is best in 60’s pop and 90’s indie-pop and, adding some uniquness and good songwriting, mixes it into great compositions. The EP begins with an almost anthemic title track. Sharp guitar and fantastic, catchy melody transfer the most important factor in the song – emotions. Neil Milton clearly knows how to put them into his songs. He as well is a skilfull lyricist. On the title track, he sings about Brexit and the lyrics of the song express concern, uncertainty and even anger (Evidence we can’t ignore / Tired of all your f****** lies / [….] You’re just the dog that caught the car). Such a a powerful song sang with voice full of emotions.
Then the music slows down. Bird Sanctuary is a soothing, acoustic song that features Aga Olek on violin. The instrument creates a special atmosphere of easefulness, which again is juxtaposed with rather sad lyrics (There must be a better song to sing / Some harmony to mend our broken wings / Protect us from whatever we may bring / Are we alright now?). Surely melancholy creeps in, and nostalgia comes along, in the form of Local Fan: a tribute to Milton’s dad. Milton and his dad both share love for a local, lower-league football team. One can hear an excerpt from a match at the beginning. Clapping and cheerful climate of the song are like a pleasant breeze in the heat. Beautiful Sixes and Eights, The Beach Boys’s infuenced track with harmonious vocals and lightness of the music could be easily released somewhere in the 60’s. Travelling in time is so easy when listening to good music. Bridge Will Burn is one of the finest songs on the short album. One can just close his / her eyes and listen to its melody, reverb and the vocalist’s voice. Melancholy takes over again, as the EP ends.
Neil Milton surely composes with passion and sensitivity. The songs on the album are authentic and emotional. With a special atmosphere, a mix of sadness, melancholy, nostalgia and hope, they truly bring out the best in indie music. Singing As You Leave is a work worth noticing.