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high places - Original Colors
I’m going to come clean – High Places have never really done anything I’ve been that taken with. Sure they’ve had some interesting ideas, but it’s never come together particularly well, that is until right now. ‘Original Colors’ works because the duo have stripped things down to the absolute bare minimum. Where their previous effort ‘High Places vs. Mankind’ was blighted by too many ideas and a pandering to an ailing indie sound, ‘Original Colors’ is focused, dark and utterly cold. At times we are simply treated to Mary Pearson’s alluring voice, a drum machine beat and a single, simple synth line. It sounds like producer Rob Barker has spent more than a little time listening to classic bleep techno – there are distinct echoes of early 808 State, Rhythim is Rhythim and LFO in these sparse, druggy tracks. Funnily enough in this disenfranchised minimalism High Places have carved themselves a sound that defies easy genre classification. ‘Original Colours’ isn’t miles away from the current lo-fi synthwave trend, but it is different enough to sound original and deeply compelling. Barker and Pearson have crafted their strangest record to date, it also happens to be their best, and one that’s sure to stay with you for the months and years to come. Highly recommended.