February 2021 – Singapore – Following the release of their latest single “Can’t Seem to Get Anything”, indie quartet M1LDL1FE has premiered the music video to accompany the track on Indie Accent. “Can’t Seem To Get Anything” is a whirlwind of fuzz guitars and eerie synth sounds swirling around its main lyrical motif; a snapshot of what it feels like to be under the mental duress of depression and anxiety.
“When we first heard M1LDL1FE’s Can’t Seem to Get Anything, we felt how it was a perfect encapsulation of the anxiety and alienation, being stuck within our four walls during the pandemic. It was a really cathartic experience listening to the song and translating it into visuals,” says Phoebe Ting, the project lead and animator. “The music video focuses on a portrait of an individual debilitated by the tremors of their mind, unable to connect with anything. Inspired by the distorted reverbs of the electric guitar and echoey synths, we explored with distortion and glitching of images. To further illustrate the visceral sensation of dissociation, the whole music video is seen through a chromatic abbreviated lens. We really enjoy the song and we hope our visual helped to convey it.”
Centred on a catchy riff and chorus, “Can’t Seem to Get Anything” is possibly one of the grittiest tracks M1LDL1FE has released to date. Originally written before the pandemic, the song was finished remotely with Melbourne-based producer Yeo during lockdown.
Written as a lament over mental health struggles, the song proves prescient; reflecting the current mood of a generation coming to terms with healing from a global pandemic. In particular, the line “What day is it, now? It’s the same old story…” hits a little too close to home. Channelling the universal feeling of being silenced and paralyzed by anxiety and fear inspired the lyric “foreign objects in my mouth”.
Frontman Paddy Ong shares, “The song is a manifestation of some of the low points we have had in our personal lives over the past couple of years – personal losses, relationship issues, mental health struggles, in addition to the stresses of the daily grind. We’re only human and sometimes it just feels like your mind is all seized up when it gets too much; you get paralysed with everything that’s going on and you just can’t do anything and can’t get out of your own head. That’s how the lines for the chorus/refrain came about. The song acts as a sort of cry for help, an acceptance that something doesn’t feel right. Music is a very powerful healing agent, and this was a way for us to express these things we were feeling.”
M1LDL1FE (pronounced “mild-life”) cuts across the indie-pop grain, weaving together lush electronic textures and eclectic dance grooves into the pop sensibilities of guitar-driven indie music of the early 2000s. With the release of their first two EPs ‘PAIRS’ and ‘M1LDL1FE’, the quintet snagged multiple music awards in Singapore and found themselves touring in Spain and on the line ups of notable festivals across Asia (MIDI, Zandari, LUCfest, All of the Noise) as well as opening for venerable acts like Walk the Moon, Travis, and Death Cab for Cutie.
The band consists of bassist David Siow, drummer Jeryl Yeo, guitarist Tan Peng Sing, and Paddy Ong as their frontman.