Milwaukee Banks are being heralded by music honchos as ‘revelatory’ because they’re Australians who make good hip hop. Revelatory because Australians are hands down, fair dinkum, horseshit at making hip hop and anyone who cries Illy at me can get jousted by a stingray.
Milwaukee Banks aren’t making good hip hop. I’m not even sure that what they’re making could be categorised as hip hop. I guess Dyl Thomas is rapping – he’s saying words kind of quick and all – but not one track on the EP is a rap song. What I can say is that Milwaukee Banks have succeeded in creating comedown music; and damn good comedown music at that.
Naturally, Rose Water starts with ‘Pluto Bounce’, the single that cocked ears for its “Jelly bean coloured socks” hook and its vibe dissimilar to all Australian hip hop, because they’re not rapping about having more cans of Jim Beam than dollars in their account. ‘Patty Mills’ and ‘Rose Water’ are the main events of the EP, for the humour of the prior and the washed-out vocals on the latter.
These guys are songwriters foremost, and certainly not rappers; the melodies and hooks speak more to the faded soul than any wordplay could. Give it a listen next time you’re not quite ready to sleep.
Rose Water is out now through Inertia.