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Hi Lo Ha’s Ain’t Gone Tonight EP Review

Hi Lo Ha Cover

The cover for Hi Lo Ha’s indie rock EP, ‘Ain’t Gone Tonight.’

Band: Hi Lo Ha; Members: Ben Reisdorph-lead vocals and guitar; Brian Davis-back-up vocals and bass; Willie Rusert-back-up vocals, keyboards and guitar; and James Fisher-drums

EP: ‘Ain’t Gone Tonight’

Mastered by: George Horn at Fantasy Studios

Adapting to the ever-changing eras of rock-n-roll, specifically in how the diverse musical scenes impact musicians’ professional and personal lives, is an emotional process that not all singers and instrumentalists can easily do. But the members of the San Francisco-based quartet, Hi Lo Ha, grippingly draw their inspiration from the dystopian state of the genre on their recently released third EP, ‘Ain’t Gone Tonight.’ The country-infused five-track album features the indie rock band’s rousing melodic intuitions that are not only inspired by classic songs, but also focus on vital life lessons that are still all-too-relevant to modern audiences.

Lead singer Ben Reisdorph stunningly drew insight for his vocals and lyrics from the dystopian state of rock n roll, while still enthrallingly surrendering to the belief that light can indeed rise where there was once darkness. The singer and his bandmates instantly prove their vitality and long-lasting endurance in embracing the belief that good can arise from even the most daunting circumstances with the record’s first entry, ‘Cold Weather Clothes.’

The first song on ‘Aint’ Gone Tonight’ instantly radiates a memorable indie rock vibe that proves Hi Lo Ha deserves its place in the at-times unnerving genre. Intertwining an intriguing retro pop and country mix in Reisdorph’s vocal harmonies that alluringly illicit a nostalgic feeling for simpler times and shimmering guitar riffs, ‘Cold Weather Clothes’ proves how the musicians all understand each other’s need to cherish the past. Also backed by soulful, melodic and vibrant bass lines and keyboards, the group captures listeners’ attention by proving they won’t allow the industry to dictate how they present their messages.

‘Cold Weather Clothes’ then transitions into ‘Aint’ Gone Tonight’s sophomore track, ‘Come Down,’ which ultimately proves to be the most memorable and unique tune on the record. Paying tribute to the rock sounds that make tunes from both ’60s rock groups and modern-day indie rockers memorable, the more mellow and upbeat tone that Hi Lo Ha infused into the second entry on their new EP would make it the perfect candidate for a movie score. Reisdorph stunningly reflects on his life, and how much he appreciates the town he’s living in, while also expressing his interest in advancing his personal and professional opportunities in another location.

The third song on ‘Aint’ Gone Tonight’ is the enthrallingly slow-tempoed and R&B-infused ‘Guest List.’ Also notably propelled by a unique country flair in both Reisdorph’s vocals and the textured guitar and keyboard blend, the singer passionately croons that he’ll enjoy every moment that he can spend with a cherished friend, as they celebrate life together.

Hi Lo Ha’s latest album then delves into its mysterious and thought-provoking penultimate track, ‘Radio.’ Led by upbeat and luminous guitar riffs, a pulsing bass and country-infused and monumental keyboards and drum beats, listeners will surely ponder what they’re mindlessly listening to in most other instances when they turn on the radio.

‘Aint’ Gone Tonight’ then ends on one of its best tunes, the country-rock-infused ‘Thinking ‘Bout a Friend.’ Led by gleaming guitar riffs and equally light-hearted and intense piano chords, Reisdorph crafts a loving tribute to a friend who unexpectedly passed away. The singer’s soulful lyrics tenderly note that while memories may fade over time, the people who leave the most meaningful impact on someone’s life will always leave a presence that will never disappear.

Conforming to the ever-changing era of rock-n-roll, specifically how the musical scene impacts musicians’ professional and personal lives, is a sentimental process that not all singers and instrumentalists can naturally do. But the four members of Hi Lo Ha captivatingly draw their inspiration from the dystopian state of the genre on ‘Ain’t Gone Tonight.’ The rock and country-infused EP features the band’s exhiliratingly melodic intuitions that are inspired by classic songs, but also focus on vital life lessons that are still all-too-relevant to modern audiences.

For more information on Hi Lo Ha, visit the band’s Bandcamp and Facebook pages.

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As a life-long fan of entertainment, particularly films, television and music, and an endless passion for writing, Karen Benardello decided to combine the two for a career. She graduated from New York's LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic. While still attending college, Karen began writing for Shockya during the summer of 2007, when she began writing horror movie reviews. Since she began writing for Shockya, Karen has been promoted to the position of Senior Movies & Television Editor. Some of her duties in the position include interviewing filmmakers and musicians, producing posts on celebrity news and contributing reviews on albums and concerts. Some of her highlights include attending such festivals and conventions as the Tribeca Film Festival, the New York Film Festival, SXSW, Toronto After Dark, the Boston Film Festival and New York Comic-Con.

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