One of Sydney’s most promising new bands, Highline spent most of last year writing and recording songs in the iconic Grove Studies. Stuck in a time where lockdowns and pandemics were bringing the music scene to a half, the close-knit four-piece worked hard to bring their sophomore EP to life, and now that it’s here, they’ve proved that it was all worth it.
Titled ‘Off Track’, the new EP is a rare and brilliant delight, one that is packed to the brim with light, jangling guitars and homely vocals that draw you in and deliver time and time again. While still fresh faces on the Australian music scene, the band have already proved their talents, scratching out a sun-kissed indie-rock sound that has evolved from their earliest days rehearsing on school lunch breaks and playing together in their school jazz band.
Arguably their most instantly enjoyable and impressive release to date, ‘Off Track’ delivers a cascade of brilliant, homegrown tracks, including the Summer anthem of ‘Staying Sane’, and the riotous, fun-filled anthemics of ‘Call Out’. Elsewhere, the band show their ability to create slick rhythms and joyous, shout-along moments in ‘Chasing Heaven’, one of the EP’s true standout tracks, while ‘Chiswick Park’ stands apart as an emotional epic, delivering jaw-dropping vocals from frontman Sam Rigney, and perfectly paced instrumentals from bandmates Rhys Hope, James Priest, and Jim Osborn. In the closing moments, Highline continues to impress, with ‘Busy’ lashing out and striking upon true indie-rock brilliance, conjuring up comparisons with modern legends like Catfish and The Bottlemen, while also staying true to the band’s own sound and sharp stylistic choices.
Speaking candidly with Ticketmaster, the band explained their struggles creating the new EP, explaining, “As a group, we started making music together in early 2019, but it really wasn’t until the slowdown of COVID in March 2020 where we got the time to try and understand how to write as a band. The slowdown really made us start to love what we were creating, and I think by that point we realised that we can’t turn back now because we are proud of what we’ve done, and we’re excited to keep making more music and see where it goes.”
A band that has instantly become favourites here at Broken 8 Records, Highline are a band that have the potential to redefine the indie scene in Sydney, and with releases as good as ‘Off Track’, it won’t be long until they’re national names.