By Gary Susalis

Vista, CA sits just miles north of San Diego. Living up to its name, there’s a certain perspective from the area informing Hell Or Highwater’s second full-length album the aptly titled, Vista [Spinefarm Records]. The band—Brandon Saller [vocals], Kyle Rosa [drums], Joey Bradford [guitar], Jon Hoover [guitar], and Nick Maldonado [bass, synth]—tap into their hometown’s energy. Ultimately, Hell Or Highwater bring a new energy to rock music rooted in Vista.

1. Tell us about the album title, Vista and how it relates to each of you.
So Vista (California) is where we are from. Our home base. Aside from being a relevant geographical location to the band, it’s a vibe. A way of life almost. Vista had a huge part in molding our band and we wanted to put it on the map.

2. What was the greatest band experience while recording Vista?
I feel like being able to make the album at Sonic Ranch gave it a bit of magic. That place is enchanting. Things came out of us at the ranch that would not have at a studio in LA.

3. The first single off of a record is important as it sets the tone with listeners as to what they can expect from the record. What sets “I Want It All” apart from the rest of Vista?
I feel like “I Want It All” was our gorilla. It’s big, brash and unapologetic. It definitely hits to some of the energy that Vista provides. At the same time, there is some different vibes as well.

4. The music industry is forever evolving. You decided to put out your first full length independently via iTunes. What did that experience do for the band and what made you decide to go through Spinefarm Records for this one?
I feel like the beginning of the band was really great. It allowed us to see the growth of the band with nothing but us. It was pure organic. In doing so we had a bunch of great opportunities and built the beginning of a following. Now with Spinefarm involved, it really is our first opportunity to expose the band on a more grand level which we’re all excited about. Take things to another level.

5. It looks like you have a busy summer ahead of you… What are your plans and what is your favorite part about being on the road?
We will be out with Stitched Up Heart (6/2-7/9) as well as playing a bunch of festivals. We love sharing the music. That’s what it’s all about. It’s about turning heads and growing the family.

6. Tell us a little known fact about the other members of the band?
Our guitar player Jon used to fake being sick so he could stay home and practice writing songs.