Alexander 23 Draws on Nostalgia with single, "High School"

By Rianne Akindele

From its initial guitar chord, Alexander 23’s latest single, “High School,” dives us right into a pool of nostalgia—of first loves and first heartbreaks—and it’s accompanying video only furthers that feeling.

For many, high school adolescence is a time that is saturated with memories and life-shaping events one will forever look back on. It is time filled with cramming for tests, football games, joining random clubs, and having the best moments with friends that you may treasure for years to come. As we get older, we begin to look back on the good and bad times of the past. Many decisions we may have made were filled with such youth-minded blindness that upon reflection, you realize that you wish you would’ve done something else.

Alexander 23’s “High School” entertains the question, “What if?”—what if you and that high school lover never decided to end things because of the changes life brings? The reality of decision-making, especially in terms of relationships, is not necessarily based on what you want to do, but instead, on the circumstances during which you’re deciding (like moving away from your home town for college, or being faced with other opportunities after graduating high school).

While the thought of reuniting with this person from the past may be initially positive, Alexander23 also muses on the possibility that this person might hate him for the decision he made, drawing on his personal case. He reflects on how they, as a couple, were so distant at first, but moves on to delicately discuss the small and intimate, yet highly significant connection the two had. That feeling of longing and a tinge of regret is palpably felt in Alexander 23’s vocals, so much so that might find yourself missing a high school flame that doesn’t even exist.

Throughout the entire track listeners are met with simple strumming, somber vocals, and brief falsettos, filled with knowledge of never knowing the life the two could have had. “High School” beautifully allows us, as listeners, to remember the raw emotion of our first crushes, loves, and in-betweens, and that makes it a worthwhile listen.

Heart Eyes Magazine