Is Here A Sense
The last time I encountered the music of Evan Rifas and Ron Huneycutt was well over a decade ago when, under the name Laptripper, the pair put forth some of the best and most heartfelt pop-punk tunes you've probably never heard.
In other words, it has taken a really freaking long time, but finally these cats have struck again with their latest eleven-track offering, Is Here a Sense.
Singer, songwriter, and guitarist Rifas is one of the most honest men on South Florida's music scene. I can't stress enough how blown away I am by the subtleties and genuine goodness of this release. These are carefully crafted songs that never sacrifice simplicity for excess.
Lyrically, his work is both lived-in and dreamy: "This don't look right/They just need some time/Unconscious to this upheaval I'm sure/As I'm tellin' you/It's hard to imagine holding her there/It's been hard enough waiting right here/Sheddin' like a vintage Cadillac/She reads that it's her holding back."
And providing balance, the solid musicianship of Huneycutt's guitars and electronic tweaks, alongside the extremely well-gelled rhythm of Dave Parente (drums) and Taylor Byrd (drums), ground Is Here a Sense in a very real place we can all relate to.
Easy standouts on this satisfying disc are "Lift," "Ten Ton Shoes," West Bay" and "Escalator." Catch these guys live tomorrow night at Bar 721 on the Beach. And let's just hope we don't have to wait another decade for the follow-up.
Rifas's Is Here a Sense album release party. Wednesday, December 15. Bar 721, 721 N. Lincoln Ln., Miami Beach. The party starts at 10 p.m. and there's a $5 cover. Call 305-532-1342 or visit bar721.com.