After a whirlwind start to the year, Highline is adding to their impressive mountain of triumphs, effortlessly climbing onto the radar of all who surround them. Off the back of their ‘Off Track’ EP, as well as some incredibly electric live shows, Highline has found the time to burrow into the present, releasing their latest single, ‘Here Now’. The track is a mesmerizing homage to the times we won’t forget, and is a gentle yet passionate reminder of mindfulness, acceptance, and recognition of the present.
True to Highline’s ever-developing style, the song is an all-encompassing chamber of feeling, echoing the stories, experiences, thoughts, and feelings of the band. Ethereal guitars lead the track as they glide upon soothing percussion. Together, they blend to create a sturdy and immersive base for this transportive anthem. Taking center stage is Highline’s endearing vocals that always pack a punch. Vulnerable, raw, and most importantly, honest, ‘Here Now’ sees the band’s storytelling take new heights, sharing their words harmoniously to reach out and touch the listener. With an extra sprinkle of labelmate and songstress Angela Rose’s vocals, an auditory wonderland is conjured. There is truly no better way to escape into the present.
We had a chat with Highline about the latest single!
‘Here Now’ is a song all about celebrating the present time! Do you have any essential moments/experiences that you feel personally inspired the song?
Rhys: "There was a particular time, a couple years ago, where I was standing on a jetty on an overcast day. Someone snapped a picture of the scenery and that’s the picture I credit as the ‘Here Now’ moment. For me, it just channeled this idea of an internal unexplainable comfort, one that didn’t necessarily compare to the external darker scenery".
The track features labelmate Angela Rose- what was it like collaborating and using the skills of someone in such close creative proximity to you?
Rhys: "Angela has an amazing voice, and it was great to contrast Sam’s voice with hers and really lift the track. We managed to send her the brief online and Angela just threw her own interpretation of the song, it came out perfectly. We were lucky enough to hop onto her single launch show a couple weeks ago, and her voice translates live really well too".
We heard there are some shows coming up! How are you feeling about them- especially after the last run of fantastic shows!
Rhys: "Yea these shows are very exciting. Our first time down in Wollongong for the year, and hoping for some chaotic energy there and up in Newcastle. They will be a lot of fun".
You're linking up with Satin Cali and Gold Blum for the tour- two fellow acts taking the Aussie scene by storm! What is your favourite thing about these two acts?
Rhys: For Satin Cali it’s just the sheer hype they are building around their live shows. There just seems to be so much energy and noise coming through and it’s a great opportunity for us as a band to try and hop in and match it in shows.
For Gold Blum, it’s the song writing. There are some beautiful melodies and songs coming together from these guys. Their latest release, ‘Let You Down’, a softer track like ‘Here Now’, is just beautiful.
‘Here Now’ was a relatable anthem for everyone who listens. How does this compare to the rest of the EP / is this sense of connection something that lingers in all the tracks?
Rhys: Lyrically, the song matches the wider theme of the EP of a general instability of mood. Sometimes that instability is blissful, and at other times, stressful. In ‘Enough for You and Me’ we talk about leaning on others to try influence your mood, and in ‘Things Just Change Sometimes’ we talk about sticking with it with your own personal strength to try and help your mood. ‘Here Now’ reflects more on the blissful element of instability, and hoping that you can stay that way for a little while.
Sonically, ‘Here Now’ is pretty unique for the EP we feel. It’s our only track with another vocalist (Angela), and we’ve been mirroring guitar lines with a 12-string acoustic, which only happens once in the EP too. It’s also the only track we’ve ever made with congas in it.
Jim: As you said, it can really relate to a lot of things, such as appreciating the bliss of being in a particular physical place you connect to, or enjoying the present when spending time with someone. For me, what comes to mind is soaking up some sun whilst fishing or surfing, where you can just switch off for hours, and not think about anything.
What is one thing you learned from the ‘Off Track’ EP with ‘Chasing Heaven’ that you're taking into the next release?
We gained a lot of confidence off the back of our last EP. Without necessarily trying to recreate elements of ‘Off Track’ into this EP, the release gave us confidence in our own songwriting and playing ability. That confidence goes a long way in promoting releases and getting up on stage and playing shows.
Jim: At times, ‘Chasing Heaven’ has a bit of a chill energy to it, which I like. Similarly, I’d say that ‘Here Now’ is probably the most relaxing song we’ve made. I think Rhys’ guitar tone, the slow pace and the congas underpin that.
If you had to describe the upcoming experiences of Highline (either EP or shows) in one sentence, how would you describe it?
We are going to hop on the road to do some interstate shows to support this EP later in the year...
I think that’ll be simple chaos.