Update, March 17: Michael Milosh has denied the “absurd and outrageous false claims” against him in a statement issued to Paste through a representative:
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always strongly supported women and their right to speak out and be heard.
That is why the false claims made by my former wife had been so hurtful and shocking to me. Alexa and I were married for nearly seven years. Like all marriages we had our difficulties and tempted to weather them together as best we could. Ultimately, despite our best efforts, we agreed to divorce. I loved her very much and we shared many special years before our marriage ended. I have always wished her nothing but the best and continued to support her financially even after I was no longer required to under our divorce agreement. Eventually, I stopped paying in response, Alexa has resorted to character assassination.
However, regarding my ex-wife’s recent Instagram post and its listed as serious and demonstratable untrue accusations, it’s simply a piece of revisionist fiction. These are absurd and outrageous false claims about me that a media outlet has published and repeated falsehoods are beyond irresponsible — it’s defamatory.
I can only stay the unvarnished truth. Alexa came to Berlin several months after her 18th birthday and we spent a week hanging out enjoying the city taking photographs that she eventually used as her IMDb listing headshot and modeling photos. We fell in love. I visited the following fall and she lived with me in Berlin the following summer but ultimately said she couldn’t live in Germany as her career and life were based in Los Angeles so I moved to Los Angeles for love, for her, for us. This is a story that has been documented extensively around the release of my first record.
Our art photography collaborations continued before and during our marriage, we had a Gallery exhibition of the photos I took of Alexa and she was proudly featured on the cover of my album.
I’ve done many interviews about my songs the lyrics and what inspired them many about love relationships and sensuality.
My life is a touring musician and the pressures of travel and life on the road ultimately took its toll on our marriage and I’m sorry she came to feel my professional life has had a negative impact on her and our life together. Alexa had her own demons and I did my best to be a good husband in trying to overcome them. In the end, we could not help each other.
We were married for nearly seven years before the divorce decree was finalized.
We filed for divorce using a mediator who arrived at a fair settlement and processes the documents. Neither of us engaged individual divorce attorneys and there is no courtroom drama. Even after all of my alimony obligations, I continued to send money when she said she needed it for car repairs, moving deposits, back taxes, creative projects at her many requests.
I’ve tried to be supportive and help out when repeatedly asked but at a certain point, I was not able to provide any additional financial support things seemed to have taken an abrupt change thereafter. Now I am being hit with horrific and spiteful lies.
I reiterate that these accusations are outrageously false and the manipulated stories provably untrue. I’m fully prepared to cooperate with any independent investigation into these false claims and look forward to being cleared of all the shameless mirrors.
[Content warning: Contains depictions of sexual assault.]
Rhye, aka musician Michael Milosh, has been accused of sexual misconduct by his ex-wife, artist Alexa Nikolas, in an open letter shared via a series of Instagram posts, as reporter Benjamin Goggin pointed out on Sunday afternoon. Nikolas alleges that Milosh “groomed a teenager for a green card, success, and sex,” and details various incidents ranging from emotional manipulation and gaslighting to sexual coercion, rape and physical violence. Her lengthy account is littered with text message and email screenshots, as well as various Rhye lyrics that she connects to her experiences.
Nikolas describes a “pen pal relationship” that allegedly began when she was 16 years old and Milosh was 33; when she spoke to music magazine Verse about the beginnings of that relationship in an interview, Rhye’s team attempted to have the article removed, Nikolas claims. In that article, she recalled sending Milosh a message to compliment his music, after which the two of them began communicating regularly online. Nikolas excerpts and expands upon that account in her open letter, noting, “He was aware of my age,” and alleging that he made efforts to meet her in person despite her being underage. She also recalls video chats that occurred during that time period that were “all sexual and flirtations,” writing, “I can account on numerous occasions undressing at his request.”
Nikolas alleges that her “first sexual experience with Milosh” occurred against her will when she was 18, writing, “I remember feeling very uncomfortable, but I was attracted to him and I did not want our first sexual experience to be spoiled. I did not respect my no and neither did he.” She goes on to accuse Milosh of “forc[ing] me into opening up to anal sex,” about which she alleges he wrote “Major Minor Love,” a song from his 2013 debut album Woman. She also alleges that Milosh took advantage of their relationship for financial gain, and recounts what she calls “one of many examples of Milosh bragging about sexual violence and exploiting women in his music.”
After Nikolas and Milosh moved in together, “The honeymoon phase was over,” she writes. When Nikolas was raped by someone she was dating, she alleges Milosh responded by “telling me I had to get over it or I was going to become a loser as an adult,” clocking the amount of time she spoke about her assault, and becoming so angry that he punched her refrigerator (among other household objects), denting it. They married when Nikolas was 19, after dating for six months—she alleges that Milosh, who is Canadian, proposed so he could gain entry into the United States on an artist visa for the sake of his career.
Nikolas’ disturbing account goes onto to detail another secondhand assault she accuses Milosh of describing to her, as well as an incident in which he allegedly “pressed his forearm into [Nikolas’] throat and continually screamed ‘shut the fuck up, shut the fuck up, shut the fuck up!’” in response to her having an anxiety attack. From there, she describes the dissolution of their marriage and their subsequent years-long divorce. “My wish to Milosh is for him to experience a profound metanoia and renounce all of his disturbing ways,” she concludes.
A representative for Milosh did not immediately respond to Paste’s request for comment, but we’ll update this post with any further information that we receive.
You can read Nikolas’ account in full via her Instagram.