Under Review

Cheap High

Ego Wholesale (Independent)

by Mark PaulHus

Beyond the city, hidden deep beneath the Fraser Valley’s patchwork of cow pastures and berry fields, there has long smouldered a hot bed of rock ‘n’ roll. Every few years, this hotbed sparks into a prolific blaze, vibrant enough to catch the attention of distant Vancouverites. Cheap High is one of those glowing embers, ready to ignite a fresh fire.

Cheap High’s premiere release, Ego Wholesale, consists of only two tracks. Despite its size, the songs on Ego Wholesale are well devised and are diverse enough to stimulate curiosity.

Hailing from Abbotsford, the quartet is comprised of two sets of brothers who, despite being in their early 20s, have already been working hard on their rock ‘n’ roll resumés. Nicolas Mendonca (Random Dander, Tables Ladders & Chairs) is a proven beat keeper; his dynamic, heavy-hitting style is perfect for the post-punk genre Cheap High falls into.

Bandmate Carlos Mendonca (Warre Wounds) makes his debut as a vocalist on Ego Wholesale. Carlos’ clever, image-heavy lyrics and charisma immediately distinguish him as a natural frontman for the band.

The other duo of brothers bring just as much to the table. Justin Goyer’s (TRI 5) dynamic riffs are at once urgent and buoyant. They add melody to the mix while brother, Derek Goyer’s (TRI 5) deep, unwavering baselines paste together Cheap High’s post-punk collage.

Keeping true to their close-knit ethos, the two sets of brothers enlisted friend Cory Myers (Warre Wounds) to record the tracks on Ego Wholesale, while another friend, Tyler Corbett, was commissioned to do the art. The resulting album is testament to a fast developing scene that burns hot with hope for the future of local punk rock.