Niagara Gazette

January 24, 2013

Debut album sends High Horse to new heights

By Vanessa Oswald
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — When a band puts out their first album usually there’s a whirlwind of emotions that comes along with it. Fortunately, for the band High Horse, this journey is all part of the inspiring ride, with bigger and better things waiting for them on the horizon.

Band members Chuck DeRose (guitarist), Peter Vogt (vocalist) and Elijah Porter (bass) have been jamming together in various bands since 2006 and they decided it was time to form their own band after realizing the chemistry between them.

“The three of us were in a different band years ago,” said Vogt. “It was somebody else’s project and they wrote most of the songs. We had a little bit of hand in it, but ever since then we’d get together and play shows and we found out that we had a pretty good technique of working together.”

Then on New Year’s Eve in 2009 they welcomed Daniel Sturner on the keyboard and also added Sandy Belsky on drums in April of 2011. For the past three years, with change-ups made here are there to the lineup, High Horse has performed primarily for local crowds as a cover band, their sets mostly comprised of classic rock tunes.

As the band gained more confidence, they realized the potential of releasing their own material, which comes in the form of their upcoming debut album, “Escape From The Glue Factory,” being released Saturday at their album release party at The Tralf in downtown Buffalo. 

“It’s kind of like our coming out party,” said Vogt. “This is a big leap for us to come out with all original material. It’s kind of nerve-wracking because the scene isn’t like it was 10 to 15 years ago when there were 20 original bands around. So there’s only a select few of us that are delving into these waters. It’s a big risk.”

One of the benefits of having five people in the band is that they all have different preferences when it comes to listening and playing music, so they naturally all add something to the finished product that makes it diverse. Some of the band’s influences include Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Steely Dan, the Beatles, Rush and Chuck Leavell.   

“We’re definitely a rock band, but I think we incorporate a little blues, jazz with some big pop hooks,” said DeRose. “We definitely don’t sound like any one band which is a good thing.”

With most of the band growing up in Western New York — with the exception of Porter, who hails from Six Nations, Canada — they’ve had the chance to observe the evolution of the Buffalo music scene. 

“There are a lot of great bands,” said DeRose. “You got a lot of stuff going on with cover bands. It’s just tough because there’s not always the outlet for it. With me and Danny being working musicians, you really have to hustle for your work.”

As for the future, the band aspires to book more shows in mid-sized theatres in the area and hopefully even tour out of state after the release of the album.

“We really hope that people are going to like this record and its going to explode,” said Vogt. “We really hope that we can sell this record, have a good show, get good reviews and have everyone and their mother listen to it. I think there’s a song on here for everyone.” 

High Horse’s album release party will take place on Saturday at The Tralf located at 622 Main St. in Buffalo. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $14 in advance and $19 the day of the show and can be purchased through Ticketmaster, the Tralf’s website (http://www.tralfmusichall.com/) or through the band’s Facebook page at High Horse Rock Band.