Amidst a formative run of collaborations and covers, Maryland’s Lauren Highsmith had always envisioned releasing fully original music to the masses, handling both lyrical and production duties herself. Once the Fort Washington-raised singer/songwriter realized that goal, Highsmith would become increasingly confident in sharing those ambitions, under the artist name Lavahi. Her is extent of clarity is such that she has devised a threefold plan for the present: drop a video for her debut single, “Forever,” in August, a debut album titled From Afar in September, and a single/video combo for her to-be-announced third release.
Since these points within Lavahi’s goal still have yet to come into fruition, I’d thought it necessary to review “Forever.” The single is utilized alongside an extensive collective: New York guitarists Frank Rankin and Chris Manzuera, Pennsylvania violinist Mollie Ducoste, Virginia keyboardist Walter Baker, DC-based saxophonist Tracey Cutler with the Dupont Brass horn section, California percussionist Ele Monroe, and native Maryland bassist Dennis Turner. Its result is a naturally-flowing, focused jam session of sorts. The guitars are heartily melodic, bass warm and involved, and drums pulsating and constant. Within this instrumental backdrop, Lavahi’s vocals emanate a type of blasé breeze, all the while the horns accentuate her tonality. I look forward to seeing how Lavahi can further utilize her talents through her upcoming releases, especially when backed by a band of equal magnitude.