For Fans Of
They say that with age comes maturity. With a combined age smaller than a main road speed limit, Highways bend and defy the natural conceptions of our world with a debut record that puts pressure to the knees of today’s rising pop/punk acts. ‘Enjoy the Little Things’ is a statement; there is room for one more female-fronted pop/punk group on our iPods and their name is Highways. Playing their first show as recent as April ’11, the quality and professionalism prevalent within this freshman release promises nothing but bright skies and a positive future for the (barely) teenage Sydney quintet.
Especially since their youngest member (and frontwoman) is 14, especially since more than half their group are still high school students, especially since they hold a mere four shows to their name at the time of this review, Highways prove a world of potential through this six-track gem; making no hesitation in this game of all-or-nothing they’ve set fourth. Let’s be real though, ‘Enjoy the Little Things’ is most of what you could expect from a current female-fronted pop/punk record. Sing-along choruses, twiddly guitar melodies, bouncy verses; the platter is dressed before us. The overall catchiness, powerful vocals of Sarah Buckley, consistent balance between melodies and chords and at times, sophisticated song structures achieved throughout is definitely not what you could expect from a group with an average age of 16.
Opener, ‘How Do You Like Me Now?’ sets the high-energy and quick pace characterising their sound, reminiscent of Hit The Lights (This Is A Stick-up era) with that grainier edge. Aside to the vocals, a definite asset of this group is the drums John Buckley lays down for these tracks; without a doubt capturing the essence of this group’s stylistic prowess and slapping those tubs like a man double his age (which would be 32). It is the slower tracks like ‘Ever Since’ with its off-beat chorus and the token acoustic, ‘La Di Da’ which truly showcase their diversity and ability to encompass all aspects of this style in a mature and consistent fashion.
Huge things come in small packages. And whilst toddlers, Highways create nothing musically ground-breaking through their first-ever release ‘Enjoy the Little Things’, what is achieved is a perfect demonstration of the potential this band holds, and a genuine ability to play true to all facets of this style. For pop/punk fans, this is a release that should not be missed – worth bags and bags more than it’s free download price. For the more mature listener – watch this name. For Highways, it’s an endless road ahead and they’re driving to the top.
Download it free here.
1. How Do You Like Me Now?
2. Ever Since
4. The Last Time
5. La Di Da
6. Victory (demo)