High Score - Sound In The Signals Interview

I recently had the opportunity to interview Arlington, TX pop-punk band, High Score. We discussed the band’s origins and influences, songwriting, their upcoming singles, “You Told Me” and “Roller Coaster”, what’s next for the band, and more. Check it out below.

Can you tell me how you formed the band for those who may be unfamiliar? How did you initially become interested in music?

We officially formed in August of 2020. Ricky, Mark and Anthony already knew each other from a previous project that did not work out. I joined in after moving from Florida and posted on a DFW musicians page on Facebook. Once we all met up and practiced, we made it official. We all meshed really well musically and personality wise. Recently Ricky had to leave the area for work so we were without a drummer for a bit but we have since found a fantastic replacement in Jessie. As for how I became interested in music, I feel like I always have been. I was in band from middle school all the way up to my first semester in college. Music has always been a very important aspect of my life and honestly, I could not imagine being in a world without it.

You’re releasing your new singlesYou Told Me” and “Roller Coaster” at the end of the month. Tell me more about the writing and recording process for the songs?

Yes we are! They are releasing January 31st and we are excited for them to drop. The writing process was pretty smooth. Ricky, Anthony and Mark had four songs written musically and it was a great template to work with to add lyrics, which was new for me since I have always written music and lyrics at the same time. The recording process was completely new for me as I’d never done it as a full band. We recorded the tracks at Ricky’s house and it was a really smooth process. I would also like to give a HUGE shoutout to Chris White from Under Currents for mastering these two tracks. They sound so good and we couldn’t ask for anything more!

I really like the guitar sound you have for both of the songs. How long did you work on them? What equipment did you use to record the guitars?

Thank you! This was the area that was the trickiest. We originally tried recording myself and Anthony’s parts plugged in through the system, however we just weren't getting the sound we wanted, it was close but just not right. We ended up taking Ricky’s drum mics and just mic’d my Line 6 amplifier. The difference was night and day. Anthony’s guitar is naturally beefy, but mine had just a bit too much twang so being able to record using the amp and get a more natural sound was really nice.

When you write do you start off with lyrics or music first?

Before I joined the group my experience with writing was purely acoustic. I typically would write lyrics and music together at the same time. However, writing for High Score has been different. When I joined, there were already four songs written musically, but there were no lyrics. Writing lyrics to finished songs was new for me and helped push creative limits that I had in place. Roller Coaster was a song that we created together from the ground up. I think going forward it will be a mixture of both. Anthony is really great at coming up with sick riffs and music which Mark and I can then go and add the lyrics.

I’ve listened to both songs and they remind me of that golden era of pop/punk. They both have some great energy. Who are some of your biggest influences?

That is by far one of the greatest compliments I have ever received and that means a lot to all of us that yall say that! Our influences are all over the place honestly. We all have such a wide variety of bands that we like and it shows in our styles and what we want in a song. I am a huge fan of The Wonder Years and instantly fell in love with Soupy’s storytelling in his songs and that has had the greatest influence on my lyric writing. Anthony is into State Champs and Hit the Lights. Mark loves Mayday Parade and Jessie is into bands like Beartooth and Fit for a King. Other influences that we all share are some of the pop punk staples we grew up with like All Time Low, New Found Glory and Simple Plan.

“Roller Coaster” is my favorite of the two songs. Can you tell me about writing that song specifically? When did you know that you had something that could turn into a song?

So, this is a song that we all created together. I wrote it initially on my acoustic because that is what I’m used to. The song is about when I was stationed in England and me and like 7 friends decided one day to go to Thorpe Park in London so we all piled in my buddy’s car and just had a great day. I always told them I’d write a song about it one day. It’s also a little tribute to the good times our friend group had over there. But there will more than likely be more songs about those times so stay tuned! I didn’t realize how good it would be until we put it together for the full band and I heard the tom work on the drums. After we got a rough recording of it, I couldn’t stop listening to it.

What’s next for the band? Are there plans for more music or anything else in 2021?

As I said we just got a new drummer, Jessie, and I can’t say enough about how excited we are to have him and his energy in the group. Other than getting him up to speed on the songs, we are planning on releasing an acoustic song either in February or March then our next step is to put out a 5 track EP to include You Told Me, Roller Coaster and the acoustic song. We are also hoping to play some live shows soon once venues start to open up, as I’m sure a lot of bands are hoping too!

Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions. Do you have anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you for having us! It really means a lot! We would also like to thank some of the local bands like House Parties and Under Currents for the support they’ve shown to us as the new group in town.

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