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Rhye’s Michael Milosh Opens Up About Inspiration, Living in Thailand + More

Alexa Nikolas

Toronto-based electronica artist and producer Michael Milosh — known simply as Milosh — has a keen sense for creating soothing music. In addition to his solo work, he’s co-founder of Rhye — a laid back R&B collaboration with Robin Braun (otherwise known as Robin Hannibal). They released their debut album, ‘Woman,’ in 2013.

What really gave Milosh his head start, however, was his solo work, which keeps progressing all while Rhye continue to record and perform. His latest solo album, ‘Jetlag’ –  a collaboration with his wife, actress Alexa Nikolas (Nicole on Nickelodeon’s ‘Zoey 101′) — was released last November, picking up where he left off with 2008′s ‘iii.’ Milosh took time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions for us.

What inspired you to release your first solo album in 2004, ‘You Make Me Feel’?

I just love making music, so the natural progression for me was to make an album and then once you’ve made one, it’s natural to want to put it out. My life in general and things that happen in my life are my inspiration — be it fun, happy sad or vexing. Life.

You lived in Thailand in 2007. How did that affect your songwriting?

No one can create in a vacuum. Everything that happens affects your writing and living in Thailand did leave its mark on what I created there. I’ve actually made each one of my records in different cities and to me, I hear each place in them — be it Berlin, Amersfoort in the Netherlands, Thailand, Montreal, Toronto, Copenhagen or Los Angeles.

Who was your biggest electronica influence growing up?

I would say it’s between Autechre, Aphex Twin and Boards of Canada with some Christian Vogel in there.

Do many people confuse your high singing voice for a woman’s? Does that have any relation to the title of Rhye’s album, ‘Woman’?

I’m not sure. A lot of people say I sound like a woman and I think it’s probably because I sing pretty soft and have an airy tone. However, I could see the title ‘Woman’ stimulating an associative cognitive response in some, thus contributing to the confusion.

Are you a rye whiskey or bourbon and scotch kind of guy?

I don’t actually drink hard alcohol. It doesn’t really agree with me. I’ve never been a big drinker as a result. I do like a good Belgian or German beer.

Would you prefer rye bread for a Reuben sandwich or white bread?

Rye, but I don’t eat meat.  White bread has basically no nutritional value, so it would never be a first choice. Plus I’m allergic to soy and, believe it or not, in the U.S., most white bread has soy in it in some form. White bread in France in the form of a baguette is a different story altogether.

What’s the one album we’d be surprised to find in your collection?

A Gene Pitney record, though I only have it in there as a joke as it has been told to me that I look a lot like a young Gene Pitney.

Your music is very soothing, have you ever fallen asleep to it?

I don’t think so, actually. I’ve gotten tired whilst working on a track in the wee hours of the morning, but I’ve always shut everything down before slipping away into that other world.

Are you more excited about making new solo music or new Rhye music?

They’re both interesting and exciting. It’s all just music. I just released ‘Jetlag’ very quietly some months ago and I’m doing weird little shows around that album buffering the bigger Rhye shows. Right now I’m working on another Milosh EP. I’m also eager to do some writing with some other artists I admire.

Watch Milosh and Nikolas in the Official Video for ‘This Time’:

Next: Best Songs of 2013

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