Music News

Heighliner

A master class in power chords and heavy needling, Heighliner's debut trudges through metal, skips through pop punk and ambles through prog in ten tracks. Because the band is instrumental-only, it's easy to focus on the guitars. Going without a vocalist typically demands that bandmembers find a way to make their songs unique and challenging, and the tunes are certainly complicated enough here: thousands of notes piled on top of each other in relentless melodies and winding changes. Definitely not the sort of thing that will hold you spellbound for 44 minutes and forty-odd seconds, but plenty lively enough to keep your hand off the skip button if you're doing other things. Heighliner is at its best when the players keep it simple; that's when these dudes' knack for fist-pumping hooks is revealed.

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Kiernan Maletsky is Westword's music editor. His writing has appeared in alt-weeklies around the country as well as Miley Cyrus's mom's Twitter feed.
Contact: Kiernan Maletsky