High Places, 'Original Colors' (Thrill Jockey)

Original Colors
Critical Mass
Release Date: October 11, 2011
Label: Thrill Jockey

by Camille Dodero

Los Angeles psych-rhythm pals Mary Pearson and Rob Barber used to be the boy-girl duo you could take home to mom: DIY's most adorably inoffensive partners wouldn't turn movie night into a keg party like Matt & Kim, fall asleep at the table like Beach House, or bring along their eccentric grandmother like the Fiery Furnaces. But on the beautifully airy Original Colors, the ambient pair seem weary of making a good impression. Pearson coos nature references like a forest diva, while "Year Off" could be a Depeche Mode single for straight boys. Barber's home-studio, electro-swirling beats ache, at times even gulp. It's all very darkly serious. Maybe invite Wye Oak instead?

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