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Review: High Highs- High Highs EP

By Keith Evanson

If you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere. Lately, this has been the case in the indie world. Musical acts Rubblebucket, Cults, and Battles can all testify to this statement, as they have gone from dominating the New York City music scene to now conquering the rest of the country, as well as the blogosphere.

High Highs have a lot to be happy about. The past couple of years they have taken over the New York underground music scene. At SXSW last year, they completely killed their set. Now they have just recently been signed to Elton John’s management company, and I can’t help but think that this beautiful little EP had a lot to do with that.

This self-titled output consists of four adorable tracks that contain a sound that many critics have dubbed “church wave”—whatever that is. It’s not a loud album, that’s for certain, but emotionally it is incredibly powerful.

Beautiful synths on the opening track “Flowers Bloom” lead you into an intoxicatingly catchy, one-word chorus. Dream-pop influences are heard on the second track “Open Season”; sonically the song takes me to the same place I went to after being put under Anesthesia for wisdom teeth removal — a magical place where everything was made out of cotton candy. Every track features clean sounding guitars with a Thom Yorke-inspired falsetto which really make this a record you will want to spin again and again.

The band is in good hands now, with Sir Elton John at the reigns. I am eagerly anticipating a full length CD from these guys in 2012. If four self-produced tracks can sound this spectacular, I can’t wait to hear a full length album after working with a producer with Elton’s stamp of approval.