The Tractor Presents: Ha Ha Tonka w/ The Ramblin' Years at The Sunset @ The Sunset, Seattle [24 February]

The Tractor Presents: Ha Ha Tonka w/ The Ramblin' Years at The Sunset


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The Sunset
5433 Ballard Ave NW, Seattle, Washington 98107
$ 15.00 / Age 21 And Up

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A week into recording their fifth album Heart-Shaped Mountain, Ha Ha Tonka was forced to start over. A massive hardware crash at the studio deleted everything. Following a wave of shock, the band regrouped and refocused, trying different approaches to song structures that they otherwise wouldnt have, and made a resilient album of positivity and triumphant effervescence. After all, music has the power to overcome.At its core, Heart-Shaped Mountain is an album about love and growth. At a time when divisiveness fills the headlines, Ha Ha Tonka is fighting the good fight and building narrative tributes to friends and loved ones, memories past, and prospects of the future. They five-part harmonize on intimate familiarities the nascent stages of relationships, deep and lasting bonds, maturation, fear and loss. This is a call to pause and glance back, inhale inspiration, and forge ahead with renewed purpose.On Heart-Shaped Mountain the quintet expands their creative palette. Once aptly summed as indie-Americana, where Alabama meets Arcade Fire, Ha Ha Tonka unveils balanced, sublime, pop radio-accessible heights and an emotionally broader, post-punk songwriting range, a la early Delta Spirit or a less enigmatic Jnsi. This isnt a betrayal of their discography, though. Rather, Ha Ha Tonka treks to new vistas, crosses uncharted ridges, and unfurls their flag with the confidence and excitement that comes from exploration.In Everything, the intro and choruses are conspicuously optimistic, with a chest-expanding joy tailor-made for the opening credits of any Pixar movie ever made. The verses replete with galloping snare and foggy keyboards mingle landscapes from Tom Pettys earnest heartlands and Jeff Lynnes complex stratospheres. The song delves into vivid-but-dust gathering memories of fond days past (fireworks show on the fourth of July meeting your daughter for the very first time) only to reinforce the guiding mantra of the future (I hope it was everything you thought it would be).Along the journey there are moments of nostalgia and indie rock balladry, like on Race to the Bottom, which brings to mind a Midwestern incarnation of TV on the Radio. All with You brings together HHTs signature acoustic instrumentation with atmospheric synth out of the Phosphorescent handbook. Deeper within theres Southern rock and jangly revelry (Arkansas), and signature, bigger-than-life Tonk (Height of My Fears). Experiences and textures blend together and stack up like the pages of a book. If you take the analogy further, this is their autobiographical magnum opus.Ha Ha Tonka formed in 2004, when four friends from the Ozarks of Missouri started playing music together. They recorded four critically acclaimed albums, played Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits, and appeared on Anthony Bourdains No Reservations. Through it all, the individuals made friends, found love, some members got married, some had kids. Especially now, theres a maturity in being able to assess lifes scenery and look toward the future. And theres something altogether more powerful in making others want to feel the same exact way. After all, Heart-Shaped Mountain has the power to overcome.
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