Music News

High Places

While based in Brooklyn, the duo of Rob Barber and Mary Pearson pioneered a sound and aesthetic that melded experimental electronic music with non-Western influences. As High Places, the outfit plumbed Caribbean and African folk to create "tropical pop," as the early phase of the band's songwriting — which also borrowed from sound-system culture in the live setting — was once dubbed. Pearson's lilting vocals and the gentle textures of the instrumental melodies over booming low end created a powerful union that was sublime and earthly. High Places recently moved to L.A., where the act shifted into darker territory without losing its ability to transport its audience to realms more vivid and peaceful than everyday concrete reality.

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Tom Murphy is a writer, visual artist and musician from Aurora, Colorado. He was a prolific music writer for Westword and a documenter of the Denver music scene.

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