Born Rory Ferreira, Milo is the apex of a well-worn library card, Open Mike Eagle’s wisdom and Mr. Perfect’s barrel-chested confidence. He came into his own spearheading the jazzy Wisconsin hip-hop group Nom De Rap, in which he was cooly discussing his anxieties and woes of early college life, dreams of wanting to start a catering business and overall finding his place in life.
After the group disbanded, tragedy struck. His very close friend, Robert Espinoza, suddenly passed away in 2011, he mourned him by crafting I Wish My Brother Rob Was Here. It was a wonderful tribute to his comrade that also shined light on the quirky, insightful yet profoundly emotional mind of a teenager who’d done more reading than any summer reading list demanded. Much like the writings of Schopenhauer and Kant challenging the mind’s perception of the world, Milo’s rhymes help to expand the perception of what rap should be or can be, even if you enjoyed the experience or not.
Following that was his project Milo Takes Baths, a booster pack EP featuring lifted Baths production that gave newfound fans more tracks in an objective vein. After a somewhat frustrating bout of label shopping, he found a home at Hellfyre Club, a truly fitting spot alongside Open Mike Eagle, whom he considers his “rap-father.”
With that came a flourishing of Milo’s artistic range. He dropped Things That Happen At Day/Things That Happen At Night at the top of the year, a thematically sprawling double EP influenced by Schopenhauer’s writings and his father’s role in his life and composed by Riley Lake and Analog(ue) Tape Dispenser. Consider it trap for coffee houses, rap music worthy of the Lyceum.
The second phase of his post-Hellfyre manifestation is Cavalcade, one of the most thematically complex, lyrically obscure and sonically abundant mixtapes to drop in 2013, and with only seven tracks at that. Tethered by the folk band America and his grandfather’s life experience, the project sees Milo honing his place in the world, as a multi-ethnic adolescent, as a senior with a liberal arts degree, as an affirmation of his will and the biological, finite medium that promotes or inhibits that. It’s still sinking in, much like every one of his projects, but anyone who was urged to Google “chiliagon” or “King Abimelech” is on the right path.
He’s also heading out on The Geordi La Forgery Tour, a 25-show escapade with former Nom De Rap member Safari Al and producer Riley Lake. The show’s bound to be hype as hell; the tour post notes that concertgoers “please bring [with them] fresh underwear, cheese pizza & capri suns.” In the meantime, Milo took a breather from lounging in his Almond Milk Paradise and answered some questions.