Following a broken engagement, Chris Milam lost everything but what he could fit in his car. Then, while on tour, that car—and everything in it—was stolen. During that tumultuous year, Milam went to the studio with a dozen new songs that grapple with loss and define his sound. He emerges after months of recording with an eagerly-anticipated slate of new material, a collection of songs called Kids These Days (out April 7, 2017).
March 5, Milam released the first single from this material, “Kids These Days.” As the first release on Milam’s newly launched label, Namesake Records, the single introduces the darker sounds and carefully-layered arrangements found throughout Kids These Days. These sounds evolved in the studio, but began with an atmospheric vocal, shimmering guitar, haunting strings, and a menacing drumbeat.
“It’s a break-up song,” says Milam, “but it’s the actual conversation. You know you need to rip the Band-Aid off, but you’re struggling to do it.”
Fittingly, this break-up song introduces a record full of inflection points. Milam’s gift for melody and lyricism revisits the earlier comparisons to Paul Simon, but these songs draw heavier from other influences: Chris Bell, Damien Rice, and Michael Stipe. Kids These Days examines loss while seizing the opportunity for change. For Chris Milam, this isn’t a break-up record; it’s a break break from record.