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YCNI:M's new album is a collaboration with bands/artists that are making new/fresh music right now and showcases a diversity of styles and talents. Artists like Tom Vek and Martin Grech and bands like Reuben, The Futureheads and The Automatic all step up and add their voices, so really this album doesn't sound like Milo collaborating it sounds more like a compilation album of various artists. This is mainly because Milo tend to step back and let the collaborator take the reigns, at times though this approach means the overall sound doesn't mesh very well because there isn't a binding influence throughout to bring it all together You know they are there in the background because often the other artists turn in a much heavier version of their sound than we would normally hear and occasionally they step forward like on "We Hope You Are What You Think You Are" with Martin Grech in which we catch a glimpse of the old Milo because it has a fluctuating time signature and their characteristic down-tuned rhythmic and hypnotic guitar riff running through it.
Most of the tracks here are a particular artist doing their thing, like "I Remember The Summer Isles" with Ross Millard of The Futureheads, which sounds like a Futureheads song, not a collaboration and at times some tracks can feel a bit rambling. However there are some corkers: the best songs, and the ones that work the best as collaborative tracks are the heavier ones because there is a stronger sense that Milo are actually part of events and not just bystanders; mainly because there is more of their classic sound in them: "The Trapeze Artist" featuring The Automatic really hits the mark with its yelpy backing vocals and quirky little keyboard ditty at the end. "Captain Of Lies" with Reuben is a flash of brilliance, climactic riffs, passionate screams from Reuben's Jamie Lenman and you can actually hear Paul Mullen's vocals, which are criminally underused all the way through the album.
On the whole the album is a softer, more indie sounding affair than fans might be used to and it shows off their eclectic mix of influences and the use of varied styles in their own music, but it's hard to say how much of them is in the mix here. They have definitely taken their experimental tendencies to new heights because this is a really new direction for their music and it will be interesting to see what they turn in when they do a Milo album that is Milo, as it is they are just curators at this party.