The ambient vocals and summer sounds of chillwave are influenced as much by the geography of their creators as anything. Hot, lazy days are conjured by the likes of Toro y Moi, Washed Out, and Neon Indian, who hail from South Carolina, Georgia, and Texas, respectively. The same is true for Florida’s Mike Diaz, AKA Millionyoung. His third full-lengths 10 tracks evoke a summer drive along the southernmost East Coast, with palm trees blowing in the breeze, waves spilling onto the beach, and Tommy Bahama shirts galore.
The title track, which features a tempo akin to Daft Punks recent samples, kicks the album off by ditching the good read and sunblock for a night-time beach party, while the slower Keeps sinks beneath a floppy hat for an afternoon nap. Such juxtapositions make the record more diverse than Millionyoungs past efforts, which could feel like one massive song. But even more than the Florida sun, on Variable, Diaz is influenced by good old-fashioned love.
The Beach House-esque Lovin (Every time I see you / I lose all track of time), beat-heavy Swish (Having you here feels so right), and the punchy, electric guitar-driven Grow (Everyday, I need my loving arms around you) all swoon over the period of a relationship when things begin to get comfortable. Diaz isn’t writing of love-at-first-site or a love that lasts for eternity, but the ease and comfort that comes with finding someone.
Millionyoung’s always-used combination of electronic sampling, real instruments, and Diaz processed vocals make for the perfect toolbox, or beach bag, for such sounds and lyrical content. The nonchalant haze that varnishes the record calls forth a summer afternoon with a new beau, so interlock your fingers with your lover’s and head for a coast.
Essential Tracks: “Variable”, “Lovin”