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Highways - Breaking the Code

Breaking the Code
by Mark "The Beard" McQueen at 16 February 2023, 8:43 AM

The story of Highways (as a band) is certainly noteworthy. With members living on four completely different parts of the globe, Molina (Chile), Andrievsky (Ukraine), Ramakrishnan (India), and Masok (Nigeria), it is a credit to technology that these four musicians could actually make an album at all let alone one that sounds this cohesive. Molina has a sound reminiscent of Metal Church’s Mike Howe (on their early works). The guitar work is solid and fits the 1980’s Dokken meets L.A. Guns sort of sound. Opening track Disposable Virtue starts with a short melodic intro before bringing in the slow paced heaviness. The song builds nicely for the first minute and a half before Molina gives a Halfordesque scream to kick up the pace. Clear and clean, this was an immediate good marriage between guitar, drum and vocals. Again, four musicians working independently from four countries. Major credit to the production work.

Songs are not cookie cutter on this album, Mechanized rumbles, while Search for Freedom races. There is a common thread linking all the songs but this band is willing to stretch a bit more (which adds to the overall whole). I think having each member bringing their unique influence, (from their corner of the globe), allows for this, and the great production mines each diamond out of that collection. Ending track The Desert actually gave me a Dio kind of feel vocally, (like something he would have done at the mid-point of his solo years. This song is crunchy and really does embody the time period of mid-late 1980’s Metal.

Highways are a band that one might not express an interest in (on paper) as it seems a bit too disarranged to succeed. This, however, is why you have to give it a listen. Passing this one by would be a loss for any fan of 1980’s era good solid Heavy Metal. Nothing is created that was not already in existence, but Highways gives a great new coat of paint to the genre and the style. This is one worth picking up, or minimally, downloading. You will actually “want” to play it through again and again.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

1. Disposable Virtue
2. Survive
3. Cut The Circulation
4. The Promise
5. Mechanized
6. Search For Freedom
7. Wasted Remains
8. The Desert
Carlos Molina - Vocals/Guitar
Oleh Andrievsky - Guitar
Vinnay Ramakrishnan - Drums
Marvin Masok - Bass
Record Label: Stormspell Records


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Edited 06 June 2023

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