“eighteen” is the second single from Pat Kiloran's (also of the band MILKK) new solo project, nobody likes you pat. Written in the middle-east during a production trip in early 2020, the once-acoustic ballad got quickly reformed into the melodically-distorted, hard-hitting, hook-laden track, pondering the inevitability of getting older, accepting failure, and revisiting moments in life that felt less heavy.
With this new single coming out today, Pat Kiloran sat down with us to talk more in-depth about his solo project, signature style, and future goals:
What made you wanna start your solo project?
I had been thinking about starting a new project for the last year or so. I had mentioned it to the other guys in my band last fall, and they were cool with it. I needed a space with no restrictions and no voices in my ear. Not that that’s a bad thing at all. But I needed it for myself. So, with all the downtime that COVID has provided, I decided it was time to jump in.
How would you describe your style? How is it similar/ different from MILKK’s?
I guess I’m more or less the key writer in MILKK, so obviously, there are gonna be some similarities. But I think this stuff feels more up close and earnest. I’ve always tried to create narratives and stories in the MILKK discography, but for the NLYP stuff, I’ve been trying to make it feel “right here, right now.” Most of the artists I love and am inspired by are very literal and very in the moment. And I don’t know what my exact style is. I’ve only put out 2 songs at this point, and they are already feeling different. I’ve just been taking what I’m feeling in the moment and laying it down. And if it’s good, I’ll know it.
What makes you unique?
I’ve been doing this stuff for a long time. And the main thing I’ve let go of is the need to fit anywhere. I’m saying what I want and what I actually feel. I’m not writing songs that “sound like a hit.” I produce my own stuff, and I have my own tricks that make my production a “pat” thing. Anything from rap to radio pop to experimental to electronic to country doesn’t matter. If I like it, I’m gonna find a way to make it my thing...
And I also just don’t care to talk about what most writers do. You can put on New Music Friday or whatever and find the same message every week. I’m trying to dig deeper into the human experience and not gloss over the fragility and fucked up areas because I think people need to hear songs about their real problems and real mentalities. That’s why people all the way from Kanye West to Phoebe Bridgers are awesome because they aren’t using another overplayed metaphor in a mediocre love song just because it rhymes and sings well. Those types of artists are saying something actual, and I do that in my own way, as well.
How did you get the inspiration for “eighteen”? We would love to know more about your artistic process...
I wrote the original version of “eighteen” when I was on a production trip in the middle-east. Israel, to be precise. I woke up early the first morning, super jet-lagged, and grabbed my friend’s acoustic and started writing while listening to the rain in the mountains. It was pretty great. But the feeling I had that morning was a mix of peace and self-doubt. As I’ve moved through my 20’s, I’ve felt less and less “valuable.” And that feeling is stupid, but it seems like in the entertainment world, youth is getting younger and youth is all that matters. And that was gnawing at me a lot. So, I’m writing these words about how I was mad that I was made to be this overdriven, creative type, and how when I run into failure or don’t see a payoff, it cuts deep.
And the further I get from that magic “18” number, the less important and less likely to succeed I become. I recognize that’s foolish, but that’s the battle with the ego and with our culture. So, I sat on it for a while, this acoustic ballad I had written. I made the beat for “eighteen” in I think late August or early September of this year, and I was messing with melodies and lyrics. All of a sudden, I start singing the song. I change some lines, move some parts, switch some melodies, and there it was.
What is the long term goal for nobody likes you pat?
I’m an ambitious person. I’m always trying new things. This project has started off really great for me. And I’m just curious to see where it could go. I think it’s some of my best work so far, and I think these songs I have in my pocket have the legs to reach a lot of people, and hopefully not just as listeners, but as people who can feel a part of something and recognize there are other people who feel the same dark and complicated feelings they do. I want the music to make people feel the emotion, but I want that second listen to the words to be what really sticks.
If you could give one piece of advice to young artists that are just starting out in the industry, what would it be?
Just do your thing. Don’t stop. Don’t let people tell you how to do it. Don’t let your lack of gear or knowledge or money stop you. Record shit on your phone, your laptop. Make beats on free software. Buy a $50 microphone. Make what feels right to you and what will affect other people how you want it to. There’s no guarantee of what we call “success,” but the real success is knowing that you did your thing and you did it all the way.