After a sensational release in 2017- “What If Nothing,” fans have been waiting patiently for WALK THE MOON to re-enter the Alternative-Pop scene. “TALKING IS HARD” was a huge moment for the band, but “What If Nothing” put the artist on the map. I am interested (and a little nervous) to see if “HEIGHTS” hits them out of the park.
Let me tell you- if you are looking for your next 80s revival meets modern day Alternative-Pop, you have found your next favorite album.
Listening to this record from the first and title track “HEIGHTS,” the band pulls you in,. This selection takes listeners to new heights (pun totally intended) by transcending us into groovy instrumental lines that first complement the lyrics, but then, branch off to turn into a huge groove-fest. What more could you want?
Now, not every track completely leans into the over-the-top instrumentals like the first one, but a lot of the techniques are similar throughout the make. This calls for both catchy melodic and harmonic lines, simple lyrics that are witty in composition, spread orchestration to allow for moments of silence and moments of jam-packed tunes, and a mixture of overall feel to keep the album lively as if each song is transporting the listener to a different stop along the 80s train station.
I feel that this album is the natural progression for the artist. The musical nuances that we hear in their previous releases are present, but they feel as if they are placed throughout the record strategically. Their first two albums brought their modern approach to the 80s with the quirky WALK THE MOON flair; however, at times, it felt as if some of the songs were forced “template” songs because they knew they would work. Now, there is nothing wrong with using a formula that you know will work, but with this album they are using the pieces that work but also feel right for the music.
On this record- the music is speaking for itself.
To me, with the maturity that the sound brings, I am surprised that it reminds me so much of the music from 2012-2015. This was the height of the concert era, and when artists were truly starting to break out and try new things. It brings me so much joy to hear a modernized version of this progressive approach.
WALK THE MOON is back, and I cannot wait to see what they do with this release. If they keep on this trajectory, who knows what the artist is capable of. Although that is exciting to think about, I am just as happy to be in the “HEIGHTS” era for a while.
I am giving this record a 4.5 out of 5 stars.
*”HEIGHTS” was released on November 12th, 2021 through RCA Records