Hot Milk – ‘Are You Feeling Alive?’

By Gem Rogers

Every now and again, a new band will come along that demand immediate attention – a ‘no questions asked, drop everything and get listening on repeat immediately’ type of band. Manchester’s Hot Milk fell easily into that category when they appeared in January this year with debut single ‘Awful Ever After’, and with regular appearances in the form of support slots for the likes of Deaf Havana and You Me At Six over the last few months, they’re becoming difficult to avoid – not that you’d ever want to.

Debut EP ‘Are You Feeling Alive?’ may only contain four tracks, but packs as many hooks and infectious melodies into its twelve minutes as any full length. Upbeat and irresistibly sunny from the very first notes of opener ‘Wide Awake’, this is play-it-loud-with-the-windows-open pop right the way through to the end of the glittering radio friendly title track, with dancing basslines and gloriously clear, summery riffs aplenty.

Reflecting the feel-good, tap-along beats of the music, Hot Milk encapsulate positivity in their lyrics without ever swerving into the overly-saccharine; it’s made to feel relatable, and it does, as they even sprinkle breakups with cheerful vibes in ‘Take Your Jacket’. The dual vocals of Jim Shaw and Hannah Mee are the cherry on top when it comes to setting Hot Milk apart from the crowd, intertwining and complementing each other effortlessly with strength that adds conviction to their words.

Like a burst of pure adrenaline, ‘Are You Feeling Alive?’ is pop rock perfected in a way that many artists spend their careers striving to achieve – there can be no doubt there are huge things coming for Hot Milk if they continue to produce music of this calibre.

GEM ROGERS

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