Release Date: Jan 22, 2021
Record label: Loma Vista
Genre(s): Downtempo, Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Electronic
Two of the singles Michael Milosh released ahead of Home had more dancefloor zest than anything off Blood, his previous Rhye album. "Black Rain" started with a somewhat "Billie Jean"-like beat and curlicued strings -- the latter deployed like the second coming of disco revivalists Faze Action -- and turned up the heat with some dramatic thrusts. Milosh finessed the change well enough that the song would've sounded just like Rhye even as an instrumental, without his characteristic sighing vocals and persuasive lyrics.
Rhye remains a talent that is impossible to pin down. Luxurious new album 'Home' revels in comfort, patching those distinctive orchestral flourishes against a vocal style that dwells on beauty, while eschewing gender norms. Songs seem to float past, a perfume-like aura that subtly overwhelms, while leaving distinct marks on the listener. His first album in two years, Michael Milosh returns to the Rhye moniker with something special, a distilled, nuanced work, finely contoured while hoing in on the essence of his artistry.
Isolation from the outside world has surely given even the most restless souls a newfound appreciation for their own domain. Perhaps Rhye ringleader Michael Milosh is one of the converted, as ‘Home’ taps into the healing aspects and the joys found within the family unit. 'Beautiful' finds Michael taking solace in the people around him, while the blissful 'Come In Closer' documents both the vulnerability and appreciation that comes from sharing your life with others.
Before Rhye emerged from a haze of identity-obscuring mystery, it seemed like that voice could have belonged to anyone. The project's sensuous, mellifluous driving force, now long-known to be Canadian musician Michael Milosh, eschewed traditional markers of gender and identity -- no matter your preferences, if there's anything you find sexy, there's a good chance you could be entranced by Rhye's seductive R&B. But even the best sex loses its spark if there's nothing to spice it up. Despite a lineup shift between Rhye's 2013 breakthrough debut, Woman, and 2018 follow-up, Blood, the albums covered similar ground, while 2019's Spirit -- a collection of piano ballads -- brought a different compositional approach to similar conclusions.
Michael Milosh was born with the gift of a golden voice. His swooning, androgynous countertenor--which has been compared to Sade's so many times she should probably receive a portion of Milosh's royalties by now--seems to radiate desire and longing with every vibration. At times, he sounds a little like Marvin Gaye at his most weightless, with the anguish shaved off.