Distraction Records Presents:
Distraction Records Presents: High Places + Cathode, Nathalie Stern In Newcastle-upon-tyne. Since their inception, High Places have created a signature sound out of using bass-heavy yet crisp beats, lilting vocal melodies and syncopated rhythmic lines performed on folk percussion instruments, guitar duets turned into treated samples, and percussive lines created from the manipulation of household objects. The songwriting is expansive and fluid, all the while managing to be concise. High Places gravitate toward the organic over the electronic, and that natural aesthetic adds warmth and intimacy to the recordings.
High Places' self-titled debut album - out now on Thrill Jockey - was recorded by the band's Rob Barber and Mary Pearson in their apartment in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood. The album has a contemplative and organic lyrical tone emphasized by the themes of goodness manifested in nature, hardship and wonder as necessities to human existence and growth. Additionally, the idea of maturation and development is further accented through the recurring mention of trees and their extending, enveloping branches. Their live show goes even further, with Mary's soothing angelic vox honey-soaked through a myriad of reverb, with a heartingly abrasive wash of punishing volume.
"In the best way, Barber and Pearson distill their knowledge and experimentation into something which sounds like the raw essence of a musical personality" The Wire
"They're something quite delightful. . . their debut is a treasure to behold." Norman Records
"They're certainly some of the most unique sounds to have come out this year, and out of these jumbles of sounds and ideas comes a bunch of the years' best songs." Real Groove Magazine
"High Places may be subtly escalating current music towards new territories, albeit tropical and wonderful." Rock-A-Rolla
Crisp, warm, minimalist exquisite luminous organic chamber electronics are the order of the day here from Cathode. Logo Magazine said "carefully-coiled clicks and cuts are flooded under percussion that even R2D2 would struggle to accurately compute, where the key is always in the melody and those luscious rolling rhythms", and John Peel declared him as "first class, I'd say".
Cathode has a new album - Sparkle Plenty, out on Expanding Records - to add to his scrapbook of previous outings for tasteful independent electronica imprints including Static Caravan, 555 and Awkward Silence, as well as Distraction Records.
Previously of retired Swedish poptastic scoundrels Candysuck, Nathalie Stern is known as one half of Lake Me, the stripped down blues-infused rhythms, delightful tunes and battered rock anthems of which have been bedazzling audiences worldwide. Nathalie will performing her own solo material, consisting of a choir in the form of pedals that loop, recut, and reuse her tender, evocative vocals that threaten to tear apart the fabric of emotions that lie inside you. Her contemporary take on traditional Swedish folk has already netted her support slots for Daniel (AIU) Higgs and performances touring Canada and Switzerland as well as as over the UK.
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