Words: Sam Law
Meet one of America's hottest rising bands: Highly Suspect. They already have three Grammy nominations under their belt, and we have the sneaky feeling that they’re going to be taking over the rock world in 2019. Here are 11 reasons why:
1. THE BAND IS A FAMILY AFFAIR.
Featuring Rich Meyer on bass, and his twin brother Ryan on drums, there’s a tight brotherly bond at the heart of Highly Suspect. But singer Johnny Stevens is anything but an outsider. “We went to the same high school together, but we hadn’t really met until afterwards,” remembers Rich, “A couple of years later we were at a party one day and we started to hang out. We ended up hanging out every day for years. He moved into my house a couple of months later. We’ve been living together ever since!” “You don’t get to choose your family!” agrees Johnny. “This [band] feels like that!”
2. THEY’VE WORKED THEIR WAY FROM LOCAL BARS TO THE WORLD’S STAGE…
Highly Suspect might be enjoying a stratospheric rise right now, but they worked their way from the back-rooms up. Hailing from the Massachusetts seaside town of Cape Cod, they started out as a local bar band playing cover versions of tracks by artists as varied as Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd and Sublime. It took a move to New York City to get things really moving. Saving $6000 dollars and moving to a single studio apartment in Brooklyn, the trio busked and worked in bars and contracting until success came calling…
3. THEY WON’T LET SUCCESS GO TO THEIR HEADS.
If coming into the crosshairs of Lyor Cohen – the former chief of Warner Music and Def Jam – and being signed as the first rock act on his label 300 Entertainment was incredibly fortuitous, then earning three Grammy nominations in the space of two years is the stuff of young bands’ dreams. Highly Suspect won’t be getting ahead of themselves, mind. “I don’t want to be playing ten thousand people and feeling miserable,” explains Johnny, “I’d rather be playing a couple of hundred and having fun. I see a lot of bands getting to a really big place too quickly and it just tears them apart. I don’t want that to happen to us.”