San Francisco indie rock band Hi Lo Ha have just dropped their new five song EP “Ain’t Gone Tonight.” I first heard the new EP on Friday April 13th, when it was released to the world, and listened to it several times, enjoying every minute of it. Luckily like the band, I am not superstitious, and I think that this is an EP that has a universal appeal.
Hi Lo Ha, the band’s name, comes from the Woodstock area where Bob Dylan wrote “Highway 61 Revisited,” and shows how the band musical influences from the past have helped them create great music for the present.
“Ain’t Gone Tonight” is an incredible collection of fresh songs that are uniquely attractive with great harmonies, a little bit of music nostalgia and all around really cool songs. Hi Lo Ha are made up of Ben Reisdorph (lead vocals, guitar), Brian Davis (vocals, bass), James Fisher (drums), and Willie Rusert (keys, guitar).
The new album is a smorgasbord of rock/country rock, that blends together for an EP with great flow and listenability.
“Ain’t Gone Tonight” Track Listing:
- “Cold Weather Clothes”
- “Come Down”
- “Guest List”
- “Thinking ‘Bout a Friend”
The first single “Cold Weather Clothes” is an unusual adventure in songwriting, where the song unfolds over a six minute period of time. This is very unusual in the world of music, where everyone tries to fit their music into a radio-friendly format, Hi Lo Ha have let the music play on this incredible track, and it really works. I loved it…ballsy and impressive.
One of my favorite qualities of Hi Lo Ha are the way that they keep the songwriting simple and straightforward. There is no guessing game here. It is what it is, and what it is really works.
My favorite song on the EP is “Thinking ‘Bout a Friend,” which has a familiar quality of sound and is worthy of playing over and over. The song, written by Ben Reisdorph after a really close friend died unexpectedly, is something that is relatable to everyone, and almost sounds like a collaboration between Leon Russell and The Rolling Stones. Amazing song.
“Come Down,” a guitar driven song with Reisdorph’s vocals whining in the coolest way ever, and I really mean it as a compliment, sounding a little like Adam Duritz if he were the lead singer of The Eagles. The song is tight and I found myself singing along on the second go-around of listening to the EP.
“Radio” is just a great song that everyone will really enjoy listening to. “Guest List” is full of great indie rock harmonies, and the melody is very relaxing and soothing to the ear.
The fifth and final track on “Ain’t Gone Tonight” reminds me of a mixture between Eddie and the Cruisers and John Cougar Mellencamp updated to 2018. Vocalist Ben Reisdorph has an eclectic voice, not pigeonholing himself to one sound, and it works on all of the tracks on this amazing new EP. I highly recommend it.
-review by Addison Coleman @JournalistAC