Dead High Wire is an indie band from Antwerp and Mechelen (Belgium). They claim not to be technical wizards but want to focus on make decent post-punk and garage rock. Now let that be exactly what they do. The music on this e.p. is far from complicated, there's no layers of sounds, no fierce distortion and no brutally raised vocals. What we do get, are four highly enjoyable pieces of post-punk music, inspired by the likes of Joy Division, The Ramones, Morphine and Sonic Youth.
At first, in the opening notes of 'The Cabin', you might think you're listening to a post-rock band. But then the drums, guitars and vocals kick in and turn the whole into a cheerful sounding rock song, seemingly influenced by surf rock as well as by the previously mentioned bands. 'Black Widow' takes it a bit darker, driving on an eighties electro rhythm and a bit more noise on the guitars. It's a bit like old Neon Judgement meets Johnny Cash, which is bit strange but simply great.
That country element is also present in 'Dark Passenger', which sounds a bit like a clean Ramones song, mainly in the vocals. 'Metropolitan' closes the e.p. in style by being a well-varied piece of uplifting rock music, again with a little bit of noise and a lot of enthusiasm. If you buy the tape, you will find a great remix of this song on the b-side, as well as an alternative version for 'The Cabin'. So, you should buy the tape. That enthusiasm is very contagious, even to the point where I'm shaking my ass in the chair I'm sitting on. It's not very practical to type in this position.
But I'm going to stop writing about this highly enjoyable e.p. anyway. Fans of indie rock, garage rock and post-punk can't go wrong with this. They're label mates of The Mary Hart Attack (at Oddie Records) and it's a bit of a shame that Dead High Wire isn't playing Incubate along with their brothers in arms. I can imagine this being great fun in the one of the gloomy, gritty venues of that festival. However, since they're from this neighbourhood, I'm sure I will have the chance to see them soon...