No interruptions with London funk outfit The Milk

The Milk are an amazing four piece soul, rnb and funk outfit hailing from London who believe with utter conviction that on their latest record they have now found their way. Their soulful hooks and synergy will keep you on your feet and screaming for more. They’ll also be heading to Soundcrash’s Funk and Soul Weekender this May. 

We caught up with Bass player Luke to chat about what it’s like being The Milk, what we can expect from the upcoming gig, and what it was like working with Paul Butler. Harry Upton writes. 

Tell us about a normal day in the life of The Milk?

When we aren’t hanging out at our studio writing and rehearsing or out on the road touring and gigging we have very different days. I’m also a photographer, so if my bass isn’t in my hands a camera is! It’s hard at times hanging out with a bunch of models but someones gotta do it.

Haha sounds like a tough life, how did you all get together? 

The Milk is like a family, we’ve been in and out of bands together since school! The band was originally conceived by my brother Mitch (Drums & BVs) and Rick (Lead Vox, Gtr, Keys). Dan was convinced to join round the trampoline at a PE lesson and I was asked to join some weeks later purely cos I was the only bloke they knew who could afford to buy a bass!

Thankfully it sounds like you have learnt how to play it. Love the funky bass lines! Now I have to ask, how did you decide on the band name?

Over the years we’ve had a lot of journalists come up with elaborate ideas as to the meaning behind The Milk. Sadly the reality is far from exciting. We couldn’t decide on a name leading all the way up to the release of our first single on ‘Naim Edge,’ when it was crunch time The Milk was the least offensive name to all of the band members. After all what’s in a name? The biggest compliment we have now is that people think the music sounds like the name so it can’t be bad.  

Would you say you all bring different influences to the group?

The strength in The Milk comes from the synergy of us all playing together! That’s the beauty of such a rich history together, you can’t fake that sort of chemistry. Each member has their own strengths and influences that when brought together in the mixing pot makes The Milk sound. 

So I guess that makes recording together a fun experience?

Other than touring and playing live, recording is one of the true joys of being in a band. To bring an idea together and hear it grow into a song is a wonderful thing to be part of with your brother and best mates. It’s not all sunshine and rainbows though. Sometimes it’s stressful and hard and arguments ensue but it’s all for the greater good of the music. The bulk of the experience recording our latest album ‘Favourite Worry’ was an absolute joy, we were holed up in a studio, converted from a medieval barn on the tip of the Isle of Wight over the 2014 Christmas period. Bringing in the New Year listening to latest single 'Loneliness Has Eyes' will be a memory I never forget!

Sounds amazing and I understand that was with Paul Butler, tell us about working with him?

In Paul we found a brother in arms, a man that completely got what we wanted to achieve on ‘Favourite Worry.’ His approach to recording was very much what we wanted to do, focusing on a live performance capturing a moment in time that combines that right amount of energy, groove and feeling. Paul is a man that loves to improvise and it was refreshing to not have everything worked out prior to recording and go into the studio, hit record and see what happens! He is a great man, a wonderfully creative musician, and an inspiration to work with.

What about taking that live energy on the road? Any tips for staying sane?

The last tour to celebrate ‘Favourite Worry’s’ release was a real joy, it was great to hit the road and play a load of new tunes! Touring is a load of fun, and every town you go to wants to party, so my advice is to soak it up! And on your days off go to a spa, you’ve earned the steam!

Great advice there. And in a few weeks you're playing the Soundcrash Funk and Soul Weekender, what can we expect from your live show?

A contemporary take on 70’s soul, full of energy from a band that have played together for years, fronted by a man with an amazing vocal.  

We’ll be there! Who else on the line up are you keen to check out?

Roy Ayers if only for 'everybody loves the sunshine’ - love that tune!

Yeah don't want to miss that! Finally, what Stimulates your soul?

Good music, good people, good food, and good liquor.

Soundcrash’s Funk and Soul Weekender takes place in East Sussex on 13-15 May and The Milks ‘Favourite Worry’ is out now.