Coconut Milk
Gig Seeker Pro

Coconut Milk

Cincinnati, Ohio, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

Cincinnati, Ohio, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Alternative Indie




"Coconut Milk "We're Sorry" review"

Local Indie Pop/Rock quintet Coconut Milk hosts a free release party in honor of its second EP, We’re Sorry, Friday at Northside Tavern (4163 Hamilton Ave., Northside, The band will be joined by fellow Cincinnati band Founding Fathers, as well as Columbus, Ohio’s Fine Animal and Dayton, Ohio’s Forage.

On its Facebook page, Coconut Milk describes its sound as “Beach Rock,” which is one of the more precise self-descriptions by a band you’ll ever see. Like the best oceanfront-linked music (going back to The Beach Boys, but think more “Warmth of the Sun” than “Surfin’ USA”), there is a compelling blend of airy contentment and wistful melancholy to Coconut Milk’s sound. The breezy melodies of tracks like “Tea” and “Wave Your Hands” linger and stick with you like memories of an intense summertime fling. And Coconut Milk also reminds you of the joyful abandon beach time brings — opening cut “Before Dark” is upbeat and buoyant, driven by some Jerry Lee Lewis keyboards and even more spectacular melodies. If Belle and Sebastian and Nada Surf went on a writing retreat to some small beach town on the West Coast, they’d probably come up with something similar to what Coconut Milk lays down on We’re Sorry.

Check out some of the band’s music at or click below. - Mike Breen, City Beat Magazine

"The Milk of Human Coconuts"

Coconut Milk’s Alex Baker may be the most unassuming frontman in Cincinnati music history. At 6 feet 6 inches tall, he’s an imposing stage presence, but he exhibits the same quiet reserve in conversation as he does when he’s presenting his exuberantly melancholy Indie Pop songs in the live context. When offered the supposition that despite being the vocalist/guitarist, he let’s the music do the talking, he demurely agrees.

“I’ve heard that before,” he says.

Baker’s Calvin Coolidge-like demeanor hasn’t hindered Coconut Milk. The quintet has risen to the local scene’s upper echelon with two excellent EPs — 2014’s Tastes Great and 2015’s We’re Sorry — that perfectly frame the quintet’s bracing Indie Pop brilliance, a hybrid of the Polyphonic Spree’s harmonic convergence and The Shins’ enigmatic melodicism. Combined with a consistent live profile, it’s no surprise to see Coconut Milk — Baker, guitarist Aaron Disney, keyboardist Kat Farmer, bassist Paul O’Moore and drummer Josh Alsip — among this year’s Cincinnati Entertainment Award nominees for New Artist of the Year. The musicians take it in stride.

“Random people come up and say they’re a big fan of the band and ask when’s our next show,” O’Moore says. “I’ve never experienced love like that with past projects. This thing is just so mass-appealing.”

“I want people to come up and chat with us,” Disney says. “There’s been so many bands, in my experience, where they get that fame and it’s like, ‘We’re so cool.’ But we’re like, ‘You actually listened? That’s awesome!’ ”

Each band member brings unique influences to Coconut Milk, from O’Moore’s bass-line allegiance to Portugal. The Man to Disney’s love of Radiohead and Queen, while everyone has an interesting take on Baker’s songs and musical persona. Farmer calls Baker “Buddy Holly meets The Shins.” Alsip’s brief tenure with the band has yielded the perspective of a “B-side Beach Boys/Roy Orbison soulful, deep, erratic intangibility — and a Weezer vibe, too.” Baker himself cites Ben Gibbard in his Postal Service role as a creative beacon, adding, “Growing up, I got really into Bob Dylan, and he inspired me.” Throw that in the musical Mixmaster and out comes pure Coconut Milk.

Although everyone contributes to the process by writing parts and throwing in on arrangements, the songs come to the band from Baker.

“I’ve written songs since seventh grade, ever since I got a guitar,” he says. “I’ve never even really tried to write, it’s just something I like to do and encourage myself to do. The music comes out of nowhere. I don’t really put a lot of effort into it. I just enjoy doing it.”

Coconut Milk began in 2014 when Baker returned from Nashville, Tenn. after the dissolution of his previous outfit, Dewey Decibel. Once home, he wrote songs even though he had no outlet for them. To that end, Baker assembled this new outfit, but he had to operate well outside of his comfort zone.

“I always wanted to get a band together, but I’m not exactly outgoing,” Baker says. “I finally got myself out to open mics, and I met these guys.”

Ex-Vaudeville Freud frontman O’Moore met Baker before the Nashville move, and accidentally reconnected with him — he dialed Baker’s number thinking he was calling someone else and conversed with Baker without realizing his mistake.

“I was really confused,” Baker says.

“We finally worked out that we hadn’t talked in about a year,” O’Moore recalls. “He was living a few blocks away and I was living with Disney, and that’s how it got started.”

Coconut Milk began as a guitar/bass/drums trio with Baker, O’Moore and Disney. Then O’Moore met Farmer, who’d never been in a band previously, at an open mic and she attended some early Coconut Milk shows. Farmer’s addition made it a quartet; then guitarist Robert O’Shall joined the fold. That lineup featured on both EPs. With O’Shall’s recent departure, Disney moved to lead guitar and the band invited Alsip, Disney’s bandmate in Kumasi, to join. Everyone agrees this is the lineup that will carry the band’s standard.

“The seeds were laid, but they didn’t quite germinate at the same time,” Alsip says. “I feel like we’re there now, with the work they’ve done in 2015, the business side and how the songwriting came to fruition. Unknowingly, I spent 2015 getting ready for being in a band that has as much drive as these guys.”

Going forward, Coconut Milk’s members are poised for more touring, and they’ve already begun work on their debut full-length, which could expand into a double album and possibly consist of new material and re-recordings of the EPs with the new lineup. O’Moore also wrote Terry and Lorna’s Pitter-Puttering New Car, a children’s book using drawings made by Baker’s father, Chris (that’s his work on the EPs and Coconut Milk’s Facebook page). “We couldn’t have paid somebody to create (imagery) that’s better,” Farmer says. “His artwork is beautiful, beachy and melancholy. It exactly fits our sound.” The band plans to compose a soundtrack for the book, but the full-length is currently claiming all of the musicians’ attention.

“We’ve just started recording, and that’s where all the crazy comes out,” O’Moore says. “It’s like throwing spaghetti at a wall to see if it’s al dente enough, and whatever sticks is there forever. Because I don’t clean.”

For more on COCONUT MILK, go to

For more on the 2016 CINCINNATI ENTERTAINMENT AWARDS, visit's CEA page. - Brian Baker


Still working on that hot first release.



2015 CEA New Artist of the Year nominee Coconut Milk has been shaking things up in Cincinnati since they spilled onto the scene the summer of 2014. Since then, they have released 2 EPs, enjoyed regular rotation on radio stations such as WNKU and the Project, have thousands of listens on sites such as (73.5K listens for Shooting Star!), completed 2 successful east coast tours, appeared on the local news, been nominated for CEA new artist of the year, all the while receiving resoundingly positive press, including nationally acclaimed press in the NYC and DC markets.

Coconut Milk has been booked for MPMF, Midpoint Indie Summer, Adjust Your Eyes Music Festival, Boys and Girls Club of America Hope Fest, U-Square, as well as various charity and private events. Coconut Milk has performed with well-known outfits including Jimmy Eat World, The Hunna, The TuNe-YaRds, Low Cut Connie, Kopecky, Broncho, Deerpeople, Shellshag, Crazy & the Brains, Saintseneca, Wax Fang, Dream Tiger, and The Yugos, to name a few.  They are currently in the process of recording a full-length album due out later this year.


"There is a compelling blend of airy contentment and wistful melancholy to Coconut Milk’s sound."-Mike Breen (City Beat)  


"Indie-pop outfit Coconut Milk isn’t necessarily the type of band you would expect to play Velvet Lounge. Nonetheless, their fluffy, danceable songs have a wide range of appeal."  -BYT  (DC/NYC Blog)


"The crowd has been nothing but in love with Coconut tonight...there was no syntheticness to the sound or the love from the crowd tonight, no one person stood idly by" -Jahan Swanson (To Be Continued Media) 


Band Members