The five-year drought is over
Mike Milosh, or Milosh for short, teamed up with instrumentalist Robin Hannibal in 2013 to release the eargasm that was Woman. To many people’s surprise and continued concern, the light and frail woman’s voice heard on the album was, in fact, Milosh’s. The idea of alternative R&B was brand new at the time of the release of Woman, and Rhye was right in the mix of the whirlwind of that new music scene. The fantastic situation that Rhye ran into at the release of their first album was all too perfect. The duo spent the last few years exploring the depths of Woman and getting to know how live music really translates to their fans. The release of Blood, however, is different altogether in part to Hannibal not being apart of the duo anymore following recent events.
The eleven-track sophomore album combines the funky ’80s jazz and R&B notes that one would expect to hear from the new The Weeknd album, but surprises the listener with mellow, rock ballads to tantalize the senses. Inspired by his wife, Milosh takes Blood to new levels. “Waste,” the opening track of the album, symbolizes sex as more of a hunting game than intimacy. The funkiness of the track plays in complete harmony with its bass and guitar counterpoints. Songs like “Song For You,” “Please” and “Count To Five” show all of Milosh’s emotions and senses out in the open. The sensually-driven lyrics of “Taste” give an intimate look into the world of love that we know well. “I’m licking wounds… I’ll lay you down/ One more time for my taste/ See me fall from your eyes to your waist/ One more time for my taste/ Drink this wine from your sweet, from your case/ I feel your love, I feel your faithful ways.”
The rest of the album’s subtleties come from the change in instrumentals and how Blood came to be. After months on the road and portraying Woman as a live musical experience, Milosh has stuck with the idea that “Indie R&B” doesn’t have to change but does need a bit of a facelift. Five years after the anticipated and praised release of Woman, Blood has its work cut out for it. The hype of “post R&B” has faded with help from artists like The Weeknd and Solange and partially by pop-R&B artists like Bruno Mars. As much as Rhye would like the phenomenon to stay fresh forever, the masses want more.