Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Review - High/Low 'Forty' EP

How’s this for a debut EP? Essex based band High/Low have unleashed a cheeky, catchy beast of an EP which backs up the rather awesome video (see previous post below), and it’s very, very good. If you didn’t miss the video posting of the title track, then your appetite has been teased already with the balls out riffs and hooky melodies, it’s a no brainer that it kicks this EP off at all. Hell, I’ve posted the video again for you to save you searching, thank me later, OK? With familiarity out the way, it’s quickly followed by the rather awesome ‘Spy Eye’, which, and please tell me to shush (I don’t care if you do, so there), has the feel of some Pains Of Being Pure At Heart-style dream pop sitting in the under-current , mixing it up with the rush of distorted bass and crashing drums. If POBPAT wore badges declaring their love of Foo Fighters, Feeder, Failure & Doves, then they might sound something like this. Pretty impressed so far? You should be. Don’t be fooled, as I was, by the intro of ‘In Flight’. It’s quiet, almost confessional and perhaps a little sickly for my beastly, manly belly, but it kicks in romps home at a tempo, galloping away with atmospheric guitars and fuzzy bass, with vocalist Steve Weston belting out the words “if I fall apart” over the top like someone who’s had their finger stuck on the repeat button by some pesky kid. It’s all pretty tense stuff. It’s right about now you get hit firmly between the eyes, remembering that this is just their debut, and you’re only 3 tracks in.

I’m going to have one slight criticism – after the strong opening 3, the last 3 tracks, for me, do kind of blend into one which, although still pretty decent in their own rights, aren’t quite as memorable. ‘Sunshine Recorder’ is like some bastard offspring of Idlewild, My Vitriol and the Foos, (My Idle Foo anyone?), ‘Tell Me Something’ follows the same tempo/riff template as ‘Forty’ ie it chugs along at a fair old pace and lodges itself into your head like an axe, and ‘Cures’ riffs it out to round things off nicely, albeit it does have a rather abrupt ending.
Overall opinion? A strong opening EP from a band who certainly know how to deliver the meaty riffs and the hooks to suck you in. It’s stuff like this that makes you remember how shitty the mainstream music industry is when you’ve got decent unknown bands like this, putting out awesome music. Get behind them, and get some High/Low in your life.

HIGH/LOW - Forty (HD) from High/Low on Vimeo.