If you’re having trouble remembering that title, that’s kind of the point. Speaking of this album on his bandcamp page, milo has highlighted that the streaming era has brought SEO thought process rather directly into the music creation process and, although he may not be directly responding to this dynamic, he certainly is placing himself in his own spot in left field with this stream of conscious collection of rhymes.
His work always emphasizes how words are said and put together, sometimes leaving their meaning in the backseat–or at least putting together lines that don’t all 100% relate to a core point, but here, even a line like “No one taught me the language of black people, I was born speaking it,” from so the flies don’t come, isn’t going to pop-up as milo entirely succumbs to textural ideas and sound delivery. There’s lines like “perfidy a calm bombast/mortal cumbia podcast,” which showcase some combination of alliteration and rhyme and just purely gorgeous strings or internalized rhyme like “Surrounded by Anglos in Almelo, thinkin ’bout Amadou Diallo, Fit in like a shaman in Diablo, high note vibrato,” which opens the project.
This isn’t to say that milo is just spouting nonsense, however. Just because “Mortal Cumbia Podcast” isn’t the concept of the album, doesn’t mean it isn’t something to ponder. You sort of think he’s going to say Mortal Kombat, but you get Cumbia, which you gotta google (it’s a dance and music tradition originating in Colombia that incorporates African and European influences). So why is he saying this instead of kombat, is it a reference to the violence that comes with these types of cultures when colonization rears its ugly head? Then of course podcast, the buzz word of the decade, which carries a reputation of being ‘white dudes talking’ for the sake of ‘white dudes listening.’ There’s humor, a reference for the kids, and some vague take on race all in three words.
Even this can have some exceptions in a song like Galahad in Goosedown, which carries a theme of suicidal thoughts and mental health throughout (“if like was a dream of Euphoria we would not have schizophrenia or paranoia”), but the highlights of the listening experience are the lines that stick to your brain and the ebbs and flows of rhyme or letter sound that hold up these songs. The subtle production style only amplifies this as loose modal jazz chord progressions and melodic devices shake and rattle with the nuanced vocal deliveries.
All that said, the album still feels like a milo doing milo, a welcome individual in a particularly strange period of internet rap.