Incredibly, it's almost been a full year since MILK's inception and the gig-come-club night will celebrate its first birthday this Wednesday with an equally as unbelievable line-up.
Founders Hannah Currie and Aileen Lynn have managed to reform Drive-By Argument, Jocasta Sleeps and Theatre Fall for MILK's first-anniversary celebrations. The Journal caught up with both girls to hear all about milk moustache photo-booths, Axl Rose resembling a mistakenly-burnt pizza and how Hannah is actually Derren Brown in disguise...
Hello the MILK girls! Well what a first year you've had. Right, you've had the cream of emerging Scottish music on your roster over the last year, with Discopolis, Bwani Junction, Friends In America and Fat Cat new-boys PAWS featuring on the side of your cartoons. What one act would you love to see agree to play MILK, and why?
Hannah: Hello The Journal. My dream has pretty much come true with the birthday show. So excited to see Drive-By Argument, Jocasta Sleeps and Theatre Fall on the same bill because I love them all. There are lots of bands on the Scottish scene that we've been trying to get for a while and will continue to try with.. but if we're talking total fantasy I'd probably have the Eels play at MILK.
Aileen: Same, I cannot believe we have those three bands booked for our birthday show. I keep thinking one of them is going to call us up and be like 'KIDDING'. If I could ask absolutely anyone to play I'd probably go for Tom Vek as I am addicted to Leisure Seizure right now.
Tom Vek or Eels would be a major coup. So you run MILK at Flat 0/1 and LAID at Bloc simultaneously and both have been successful. Any plans to branch out with OINK? Or LOAF?
H: Well not now you've ruined it by coming up with them first. Haha, we have a few potential branching-out type things in the pipeline but we both work full time so it's just trying to fit it all in. We don't want to commit to anything unless we can really commit to it. We absolutely love doing this though, it's kind of my lifeblood, so we'll keep trying to come up with new ideas.
A: OINK is great, I'm already thinking about paper snout flyers. Thanks for that.
You're welcome, send our royalties in the post. We've read that your two highlights were the Anti-Valentine's Day Carnivores experience and your Christmas bonanza with the Dirty Beggars. Tell us exactly why they were udderley brilliant...
H: Ahhhh, I just smile every time I hear that Anti-V Day show mentioned! It was just what you hope for in a live show – everyone hooked and totally willing to let go, drinks and bodies flying up in the air, and everyone sticking around for a big dance after to the Midnight Lion DJ set. My favourite part was Kenny telling everyone to “sit the fuck down” and people doing exactly what he said - that's what you want in a crowd. We hope for many more like it. Also, the So Many Animal Calls guys were launching their single and got such a warm reception. It was just an all-round good vibe.
A: I can remember looking at the crowd during the Anti-V show and there were so many happy faces bouncing about and the place was absolutely buzzing. I had the fear that the bouncer was going to shut the place down on account of all the crowd surfing but we just kept on going. The Christmas show was so so nice, I nearly had a cry. All my family were there and we had mince pies and mulled cider kicking about. Washington Irving played all their lovely songs and it was such a nice wholesome atmosphere. Then a girl spewed on her shoes.
We bet she was feeling 'soleless' the next morning. From the off, MILK attracted really strong, diverse line-ups. We're assuming you haven't got a loads of cash to throw at the bands, so why do you think you've been able to capture such established bands so quickly?
H: We try to guarantee a good time at the very least.Just making sure everyone is happy and well watered is the main thing, but also we want it to be busy just as much as the bands do, so we throw ourselves into promoting the show. We've both been journalists so we know how to hassle the press.
A: I think people like to be a part of something fun regardless of fees. It helps that we both love music and we're so passionate about working in the industry so I guess this comes across to the bands. That and the free cookies. Bands need to be fed.
Free cookies are enough to get us down there. So MILK has been a resounding success since its inception. Why do you think this is? It can't be purely down to its bold, memorable marketing campaign can it?
H: The marketing stuff definitely helped to grab people's attention in the beginning, but I think the reason people keep coming back is because they enjoy it. It has a lovely, warm atmosphere and everyone is there to have a good time. It's also good that when the gig part finishes you're already in the club. We love it when the lights come up and everyone's still raring to go – the bouncer usually has to chuck us out along with everyone else.
A: I agree, we had to make a bold impact to get everyone's attention but we couldn't rely on it forever. We count on booking the best acts and making sure there's always a party vibe in place circa midnight.
Keep them coming! Undoubtedly your best line-up so far is on your first birthday party next month. You've managed to reform not only Theatre Fall and Jocasta Sleeps but Drive By-Argument as well. First off, just how?
H: We do not know. We wanted to do something special for the birthday party and came up with the idea of reforming some of the best 'missing' bands, but as soon as we said it we were like 'Nahhhh, that's never gonna happen!' Props to Drive-By Argument for giving it the green light, after that it was a doddle to get the other bands on board. Still can't believe I'm getting to go to the show, waaaa...
A: Hannah is Derren Brown. That's the only explanation.
We'll keep an extra eye on our possession, just in case she is. Now seeing as you girls are clearly talented in this department, shall we put you in touch Slash and Axl Rose's respective management to see if you can bring back their harmonious appetite for destruction?
H: Watching Axl Rose at Leeds festival was one of the most painful things I've ever had to endure. He couldn't catch his breath to scream “diiiiiiie” at the end of “You're in the jungle baby, you're gonna...”. It just fizzled out in a splutter. So no, I think Slash is better off on his own.
A: His face is like a pizza that you've grilled by accident because your oven is new and you can't figure out what all the symbols represent.
So you could say he's got an appetite for his own face's destruction then? For all those who rolled out of bed early to buy a ticket for the night, what can they expect at the M1LK birthday extravaganza?
H: Well we've heard rumours of a duet and a few cover songs, but can't confirm whether they're true or not. There's also gonna be lots of cake, lots of lovely decorations, and goody bags. I think it's gonna be the wildest night Flat 0/1 has ever seen.. we're moving most of the furniture out to fit everyone in. And the bands will be DJ'ing all the old school hits after the show. Let it be known that anyone who doesn't have a ticket is more than welcome to the after-show party from midnight till 3am.
A: We also have a MILK moustache photo booth so you can get smothered in some cream and get your photo taken for lols. I cannot wait. I think about the 6th June at least once every seven minutes. Hannah and I have taken the next day off so...sorry. For everything.
For our first birthday, we just watched with wide-eyes as everyone ate our cake! So what are the future plans for MILK after you get your first anniversary out of the way?
H: We will definitely be watching with wide eyes as everyone eats our cake. Afterwards, we will be hungover for a week. After that, we will get back on the wagon and keep booking shows that we want to see happen. Because we're very selfish like that. Got a good few bands booked for the future that we're really excited about!
A: Yep, keep on keeping on and hope that one day someone will call us and say 'Hiya, do you want to do this for a living?'
Right, now that we've milked all the dairy puns, we'll be off. Thanks for your time ladies. One last thing, ten cows in a field. Which cow's got the most oil? Coo eight! Tell us your favourite milk-related joke...
H: I'll leave the milk jokes up to Aileen because she's mental and will probably know ten or so. Thanks.
A: There's two cows in a field and one cow turns to the other and says 'Moo' and the other one is like that 'Shut it'.