I have waited three months for this concert during which I was predominantly listening to them. Yes. Highly Suspect! I have read multiple articles in which there were a series of adjectives used to describe what they do and how they sound. To me there is only one combination of words that describes Highly Suspect best – beautifully brutal. Just like life itself. There is great beauty to what they do; there is also honesty which portrays the brutal reality in which we live. Most importantly, their music is therapy, therapy to them and therapy to us, which is, ultimately, what brings us all together. In that, Highly Suspect achieve the greatest purpose of music – to ease the struggles of the soul.
Perhaps it was because I have listened to them so much but when they went on stage I felt like my friends were playing a gig. Perhaps it was also because of the venue – The Garage, a small space with the capacity of 300-something people. But it all resulted in a very pleasurable gig, which was exactly what I expected my first Highly Suspect gig to be.
There is also another aspect to their music that is best experienced when you hear a live performance – how organic their sound is, how natural it sounds – haunting bass lines, tight and powerful drums, vintage-y at times, even nostalgic guitar riffs, sincere lyrics and a voice that is beyond this world. It is pointless to compare them to another band just so one can get the idea –you have to experience what they do yourself, and you either get it or you don’t.
The band has released just two albums, making the anticipation of the third almost unbearable. Their live performances, however, prove that they have better technique of performance than two albums would teach them. Perhaps this is due to the multiple performances they have had as an upcoming band in their home Cape Cod, due to the many shows played for friends before going to New York is what seems to have made them technically agile.
In any case, Highly Suspect prove to be one of the most promising bands of our contemporary times and definitely they fit in the list of my top 5 bands of all time. They show growth through time, which is not only the ultimate goal of music, but of life itself. They are diverse, but most importantly they are real. While I anticipate their next album, those of you who haven’t listened to them might as well do it, won’t be a waste of time for sure.
9 Feb 2018
Photo by Vlady Veselinov