To be honest when the PR for the new Milburn video landed in my inbox I stared blankly at it, my facial expression taking on that quizzical ‘who?’ look! I’d never heard of Milburn – had no prior knowledge of them, or their music.
So it was, with a slight headache, a touch of a cold and the daunting task of packing for a holiday making up my Mardi-soir, I decided to venture forth and have a deco at this ‘unknown entity’.
Good guitar intro, bit of impending doom bass, and wham. It’s Alex Turner!
No seriously, I’m not that up on singers from Sheffield, natural habitat of Milburn. In fact, the only singer I know from Sheffield IS Turner and for the record, Joe Carnall does kinda sound like him. With an added dash of Tom Ogden, thrice removed relation of Hilda and frontman with “tears of gold, my Charlemagne” Blossoms. I’ll put the resemblance down to geography and indigenous Northern accented vocals.
So … ‘Midnight Control’. Bit rock, bit indie, bit pop, it reminds me of some of the sounds that used to populate the chart toppers of my ‘disco days’ – back when music was pure, its intention was clear, and it had stalwart, dedicated fans who went out each week and didn’t just pay for it, nooo, they queued up to pay for it!
Retro rock guitar vibes and a soulful vocal take centre stage ahead of some funky blues-bass and piano, all held in check by well tempoed, understated drumming. This is good stuff, more than good, pretty top notch in fact. It’s a song with an easy rhythm, that’s both well arranged and skilfully produced, just without the prerequisite overcoat of oil slick that so many similar bands opt for these days.
I have no idea why Milburn’s sound means nothing to me, but I’ll be making a point of deep diving into their back catalogue.
Cue words about the video! Young page-boyed chick (I can use the term, I’m female) dressed in ’70s tribute outfit of wallpaper coloured stripey top, and high-waisted, bell-bottomed, “no elastane in these babies” jeans, high kicks the night away in Sheffield City Hall.
With more stretch on her hamstrings than Ibrahimović, she Can-Cans and Night Fevers across a rubix cube disco floor – the kind that used to be found in Club “Anytime Anyplace Anywhere” back in the day! I’m told her dance routine is ‘Northern Soul’, something about which I must confess total ignorance! But it’s a neat video that goes with the retro disco-hall vibe of the song.
‘Midnight Control’ is part of a Double A along with track ‘Forming of a Fate’, available now via iTunes and usual digital outlets. Milburn have just kicked off a UK tour and I’d post the dates ‘cept they’re all sold out BAR – Sep 27 – Carlisle The Old Fire Station, GET ON IT CARLISLE!!