YsL Milli X Izoki - THE LIGHT UP - Stereo Stickman

YsL Milli X Izoki THE LIGHT UP


Milli and Izoki showcase the best of their abilities among a series of thoughtful soundscapes on this collaborative EP The Light Up. The Fall makes for a fitting introduction, a thick beat is accompanied by a light and organic riff that lingers delicately in the air. Within this, both artists proceed to pour their flow and their story into the process.

The second verse brings a little more clarity in this case, you really start to connect with the song the further into it you get. There’s a contemporary twang to the rap style, though the music has a little of that intertwined with something fresh and unexpected – which continues throughout the project and helps keep you interested.

Change sees a wash of reverb fill the space, offering a dreamlike quality and making the lyrics float through with a dash more poignancy. The track features a lot of personal outpouring, honesty and gratitude, so you start to build a clearer understanding of the artists as the details come through. The music suits this subject matter and openness well.

There’s a slightly unique rhythm to many of the vocals throughout this – almost underlining a desire to meet the beat completely; with a rap flow that tumbles through the music, as if inherently attached to the notes and the pace of it. Hate is the first moment at which this method is broken away from – a welcomed guitar part accompanies clear and passionate vocals that follow their own rules and seem a little calmer and more confidently involved in the moment. This is a definite highlight for these reasons, easy to enjoy music and a sense of leadership and accomplishment in both performances.

There’s an ongoing sense of drive and dedication to this project, the titles and the lyrics, even the passion and mood of each piece – all of this leans in the direction of motivation and dream chasing. For those who seek out that sort of energizing reinforcement, the album will most likely connect well. Tracks like No Fear push you towards being yourself and being different – the vintage jazz vibe works well; and the thicker beat during the latter half helps create a dynamic that again holds close to your interest.

What keeps this project united within its intentions and sentiments is a shared goal and a shared creative freedom when it comes to music. The EP is instrumentally eclectic, which is rare. Piece of Me is an example of a total step away from the expected – a pop-rock melody and guitar line build the backing track. That same vocal style emerges and maintains the threads of identity among this. All The Smoke afterwards adds a level of soul-rock – a gritty sample paves the way for a striking story-line.

Towards the end of the EP, High Pressure talks of the weight of the world and overcoming difficulty – once more it offers a sense of self-empowerment and possibility. The vocals are clearer here, placed a little more up-front within the mix. The words fall around you in a much more intimate and vulnerable manner – this clarity works well at the final hurdle, the music takes a step back and you really just focus on the ideas and the tone of voice. It’s an inspiring track and that ability to easily pick up on this is essential in the first few moments when it comes to drawing an audience and capturing their affection.

The EP comes to a close with Take A Breath – Milli and Izoki utilize one last chance to pour absolute passion and energy into the process. Clarity remains, so you listen to every detail and you witness the entire piece evolving. It feels like a stream of consciousness in many ways. The crisp finish and the realness make for a great way to go out. The duo do their thing and it’s easy to recognise once you’ve delved into this collection. With both artists being only sixteen years of age, there’s likely to be much more music to look out for in the coming months and years.

Find & follow Izoki on Instagram.

Rebecca Cullen

Founder & Editor

Founder, Editor, Musician & MA Songwriter

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