Cape Cod based Highly Suspect have dropped their highly anticipated sophomore LP titled The Boy Who Died Wolf. The band are riding on the heels of 2 Grammy nominations last year, one for their song "Lydia" that sent their trajectory soaring atmospherically into the musical sky that turned heads and sent many rushing to find out who were these unknowns that are causing so much fervor and excitement. This brand new effort seeks to pick up right where the last one left off, and continue the band's meteoric ascent into mainstream popularity.
We start off with the album's first single "My Name Is Human" a distorted, moody tune that sets the mood off just right with frontman and guitarist Johnny Stevens introducing the band's style and what we can expect for the rest of the album to follow with dark edged rhythms that are reminiscent of early 90's era grunge, translated into more modern musical arrangements that allow us to get a full grasp of what we're experiencing. "Look Alive, Stay Alive" is a more intense number with high energy guitar riffs, and a strong musical presence from all parties involved to create a more sonic buzz and aura that surrounds the band and binds them together as the album progresses. "For Billy" is my favorite song off the album with dazzling musical interludes, strong musical performances from twin brothers Rich and Ryan Meyer on bass an drums respectively, create an otherworldly experience that best encapsulates the style of the group and who they are as musicians. "Serotonia" is another solid track with more distorted effects, and a more raw musical dexterity to the sound that bodes well for the rest of the album moving forward.
The second half begins with "Send Me An Angel", an ominous sounding tune that features Johnny's vocals entering a moody phase that highlight's the band's raw emotional side that pops up at any given time, and allows you to see the band's true colors. "Viper Strike" features some solid guitar work, and a more straightforward approach that does a neat job of highlighting the band's musical dexterity and their ability to reach throughout the musical palette to offer up a little something for everyone. We begin to wind things down on "Chicago", a track that starts out with a neat piano arrangement that unwraps different facets of the group that we didn't even know exist, and leaves us surprised and elated that such beautiful harmony exists in this world. "Wolf" ends our musical stay here with a somber arrangement much like the previous tune, and wraps everything we heard here in our voyage to the end with great fanfare ad gives us a chance to reflect on the sound of the album, and correlate into how it fits into our everyday lives. It seems like yesterday that I just featured Highly Suspect as my Artist Spotlight feature, and thinking about to when I first featured "Lydia" on an early episode of my podcast, and seeing where they are now in their musical careers just speaks volumes about the impact their upbringing here in the Bay State has had on their development as musicians.
All in all, an excellent effort from Highly Suspect, a band that are charting their own path to success by not wearing labels or adhering to any one specific genre that has defined their aesthetically creative spirit and independent minded mentality.
1."My Name Is Human"
2."Look Alive, Stay Alive"
7."Send Me an Angel"