High Places Vs. Mankind Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: The Los Angeles-based indie duo releases its second studio album.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. High Places vs. Mankind is their most complete work to date, which ends much as it began, with the band’s love of outright pop.
  2. 80
    Intriguing, enigmatic and one of a kind. [May 2010, p.90]
  3. High Places have moved on, positioning themselves on the fringes of the ongoing chillwave explosion with enough invention to outlast most of its central protagonists.
  4. Instead of the earlier sample-heavy style, Barber incorporates more live instrumentation, and as a result High Places feel more like a band.
  5. The signifiers of the band's sound are still evident--jittery rhythms, ambient instrumental passages, gauzy washes of guitar courtesy of Rob Barber. But they're more subtle, restrained, and tasteful here.
  6. Recalling only bits of their awkward past-flirtations with electro-pop, this new material feels ripe with a formative momentum that only occasionally misses the mark (the elementary musings behind On a Hill in a Bed on a Road in a House, we can do without).
  7. If you heard Mankind without hearing their other work, you might think it was a decent record with a couple of memorable songs--kind of generic and bland, but not awful. It’s only a disaster if you were charmed by High Places' original sound and left cold by their new approach.

See all 14 Critic Reviews

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