HARLOR may be a new name on the music scene, but one listen to this duo’s debut single, “Not Ready To Go”, will show that these guys are no amateurs and are ready to take the world by storm. A perfect blend of warm synths and transcendent vocals, this beautifully mastered single warrants a listen…and then maybe another hundred or so.
The duo is comprised of singer/songwriter, Nick Gerard, and producer Max Anthony. Prior to meeting in a dorm room at the University of Dayton and bonding over their respective love of music, both Nick and Max were already teaching themselves the art. The lifelong musicians quickly connected and despite having different musical backgrounds, are in “lockstep mentally and musically,” states Max.
They describe themselves as “regular dudes” but they bring much more into their music – an unpredictable and undeniable spark as they convince listeners to drop all inhibitions. They spent two years perfecting a signature sound before sending a demo over to Katalyst, who has produced for the likes of Bruno Mars, Eminem, and Drake, and the duo was quickly signed to a production deal.
Now, the pair are formally introducing themselves with “Not Ready To Go,” a single that wraps a message of heartbreak, rebound, and acceptance into a show-stopping vocals performance consisting of fluttering falsettos and intimate verses. The lyrics deal with trying to move on when you’re still in love with someone else, trying to fill that void but only making yourself feel worse by cheapening the idea of what true love means. The realization prompts a fantasy of the one that got away coming back with the realization that you were it for her too. But it’s just a fantasy. The song concludes with the acknowledgment that she may never come back, but all you know is that you’re not ready to move on. And all of that is over a slow and steady piano anchor accompanied by a rising bassline and swelling synths. It’s catchy, to say the least, despite the heartache.
Nick says they “want to make songs people love” and can connect with. While not all of their songs may center around deeper topics, they do address topics like “depression, addiction, and other struggles in order to empathize with a conflicted listener, and have them know they’re not alone in that.”
In an age where society seems to be struggling between superficiality and authenticity, it is refreshing to hear songs that can both draw you in instrumentally and also deliver a meaningful and honest message. Regardless of how many times you end up listening to “Not Ready To Go”, HARLOR is a name that you will undoubtedly see many more times. They have a series of singles planned for the rest of this year, and as someone who gravitates towards future bass and lo-fi electro-pop and deeply connected with this first single, I know I’m excited to hear more.