The Mill
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The Mill

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"Meno Forms E.P. Review By Gareth Dorrian South London Press"

AMONG the hundreds of records I listen to annually there is little room for unsigned hopeful hit-makers.

That was until a ninja somersaulted through my open window and left this delicious six-track of delights, next to a hamper-sized tin of Quality Street.

Belfast fivepiece The Mill make the kind of noise usually only available in high-security acoustic bunkers manned by disgruntled 60s psychedelic artists with handlebar moustaches and frightening laughs. Okay, the production's a bit pants and it sometimes sounds like they're jostling for space in a mobile shop, but this is only the beginning, folks.

Highlights include the Aldous Huxleyesque rumbling of Perfect Isolation and the quite nice Own. The former goes on forever and the drumming's a little uncertain in places, but overall it's a tasty morsel informed by all of Manchester's talent, including Mark E. Smith, John Squire and Bernard Sumner. A bit of money and time in the studio is all these guys need to make something timeless.

Review Link: http://icsouthlondon.icnetwork.co.uk/1000whatson/0200music/tm_headline=albums%26method=full%26objectid=19445072%26siteid=50100-name_page.html - South London Press 11 July 2007


"Meno Forms E.P. Review By David Roy Irish News"

We end with another overdue review, this time of the debut release from Belfast combo The Mill.

Offering a generous six tracks, their Meno Forms EP is rough around the edges in almost every sense, yet its psychedelic guitar charms still show definite promise. Singer Ciaran can't really sing but he makes it work for him in much the same way as Ian Brown, Bobby Gillespie or Julian Casablancas do.

The EP's highlights are a pair of slow burners called As Stone and Own, the stoned glam blues skronk of Heard Her Call and a spacey blast of confusion called Duty's Dues which rounds off proceedings.

It would be pure rock and roll fun if the band were actually as debilitatingly messed up in real life as they sound on that last track. Find out for yourself at Auntie Annies on September 12, and have a listen at www.myspace.com/themillonlineinfo. - Irish News 24th August 2007


"Meno Forms E.P. Review By Ken Foster strummerlive.net"

Guided by Voices perfected (or imperfected) the diy approach to recording. The Mill suffer from a case of slight overambition. The songs are intricate and complex but come across as under-rehearsed. This may of course be intentional which we have always supported but there's something about the rhythm section here that's not convincing me either way.

These songs could be (probably are) really, really special but I'm irritated by the slightly off kilter drums bass non-synchronisation and it's baffling how the others manage to garner any sense of togetherness over this confusing backline. At the same time it's strangely addictive. 'Perfect Isolation' (a good case in point) has a Strokes-like vocal trying to tie together the mayhem ensuing in the background. I had to play it again straight away to try and make some kind of sense of it all. (I failed).

Likewise, 'As Stone' follows the same pattern. At one stage I thought i had 2 songs going on. Like when you open 2 web pages both with music auto streaming. Fantastic stuff. And then just when you think they've lost the plot a spellbinding guitar or keyboard break indicates that it's all rehearsed ala Captain Beefheart.

'In Lime' brings a semblance of order to the proceedings having a recognised blues/rock structure. Akin more to The Fall than The Stones though with a bit of Primal Scream thrown in and proving beyond doubt that the band can undoubtedly play. Madchester influences permeate 'Heard Her Call', which again follows conventional songwriting nomenclature. Strangely enough I'm yearning for the earlier mayhem already!

'Duty's dues' begins with a Joy Divisionesque drum and bass intro and frankly attempts to fuse together several different ideas and rhythms which most bands would abandon as too complex to even attempt. This may sound a little odd but I'm looking forward to hearing the 3rd album (this is their first demo ep) because if this develops the way it could do then anything is possible.

www.myspace.com/themillonlineinfo
http://iacmusic.com/artist.aspx?id=67983

Article Link: http://strummerlive.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=158&Itemid=28 - www.strummerlive.net 13th September 2007


"Meno Forms E.P. Review By Huw Green lastbroadcast.co.uk"

Unsigned Belfast band The Mill has produced a rare debut, an EP that features a range of musical styles and does not scrimp on quality. Self-recorded and remarkably under-produced, the record doesn’t fall back on the virtues of the lo-fi sound but instead makes the best of a difficult situation, the songs are sophisticated and musically earnest.

Phil Mc Cabe’s bass guitar is the engine room, especially for 'Heard Her Call' and 'Duty’s Dues' although nowhere is the music in any sense bass-y. Restraint and sensitive song writing are the hallmarks of a group that can expect to be critically lauded and The Mill have these in bucket-loads. Opener 'Perfect Isolation' washes into being with a structure that is like waves crashing onto a shore with an oncoming tide. The song doesn’t just begin, it emerges subtly, and the primary hook, although it is only carried by one guitar line, is strident and assured. As throughout, Ciaran Cullen’s vocals are carefully understated and studiously non-dominant. He sounds a little like the post-punk singers in Wire, The Fall and even The Pogues, but there is no clinical flatness or cynicism here, just an awareness of the dangers of appearing narcissistic and a faithful allegiance to the work that the rest of his band are doing.

'As Stone' is a wobble for the group, its difficult time signature not always being held together as well as it might and there are some whimsical rumblings. Nonetheless, towards the end that confidence re-emerges and the group display their erudite approach to extended instrumental sections. 'In Lime' is a more straightforward fuzz guitar piece that emulates some venerable Blues rock traditions, including a throaty voice and a rocksteady riff that runs through the entire track like a watermark. It conjures up something of The Fall’s louder 1980s sound and scratches and gyrates around its own squall.

On this heroic self recording, The Mill will be a fantastic proposition when they get some record label input and the opportunity to record a full album. Meanwhile, keep your eyes peeled.

Article link:
http://www.lastbroadcast.co.uk/content/view/1978 - www.lastbroadcast.co.uk


Discography

Meno Forms E.P.

Photos

Bio

The Mill are a West Belfast based five-piece rock outfit who have recently self-produced their first E.P. Entitled 'Meno Forms E.P.', the six songs evidence an eclectic range of influence on the band's sound, which draws on The Stone Roses, The Doors, Nirvana, Pink Floyd, The Smiths, The Stooges and The Velvet Underground, to compliment but a few.

The band have been together in various guises for over four years, during which time they have slowly cultivated their collective songwriting abilities. Ciaran Cullen (vocals) and Shane Diamond (lead guitar), friends since childhood, began writing in early 2003. Over a year later, in March 2004, Phil McCabe came on board as bassist, introduced to the duo by a mutual friend. Jonny McBride joined in early 2006 on guitar also, as the band now looked to capitalise on increasing local support of their demos by taking an already solid live act public. The current line-up was completed in September 2006 with the addition of Keith Gordon on the drums.

The band now has an impressive canon of songs in both volume and quality, and a refreshingly distinctive sound, developed and matured since their early work in 2003.

The Mill have finished recording their debut album (due for release in May), which follows up their critically lauded Meno Forms EP.