Haster Gathers a Storm of Alt-Rock Potential

Categories: local bands

By: Rachael Mattice

Bad weather is rarely something we have to deal with in sun-laden OC. But after getting stuck in the middle of a severe downpour on a drive to San Diego, Huntington Beach native David Heida knew "Haster"--meaning a violent rainstorm--would be a perfect name for his budding alternative rock Orange County band.

"The storm came out of nowhere, and I immediately knew it was the band name," Heida said. "It seemed like fate."

Adding the letter "H" in front of the "Dexter" television show character name "Aster," lead guitarist Heida and drummer Brian Tew couldn't let their favoritism for the name go when they decided to form a band in early 2010. After jamming with different musicians for six months while completing nine songs, Tew and Heida met vocalist Jarrett Stockmar and quickly went into the studio to record Haster's first EP Searching. The final lineup was set in stone, however, in 2013 adding guitarist Patrick Nolan and Bob McCool on bass.

With a relentless show schedule, on top of working day jobs to stay afloat and out of debt, the band's mission to make a their presence known in the fray of OC hard rock acts can be a tough racket at times.

"If you are playing a show with five other bands and are playing to the same fan base, you need to pull the audience more into your music to hopefully get them to buy your album," Heida says. "It's still a bit of a rivalry with the other bands even though we're friends."

Four years after their formation with numerous performances, a win for "Best Metal Band" in the 2012 Artists in Music Awards, the release of their official video for their single "Medicine" with Lingoberry Films and a nomination for "Best Metal Band" at the 2014 Orange County Music Awards, Haster released their full-length debut album "Let It Go" on Tuesday, March 25th.

The 14-track full-length dabbles in the band's '90s influences in instrumental riffage akin to Deftones, Chevelle and Tool. Stockmar's vocals also swiftly flip from acoustic-accompanying clean singing to hard rock growls in every song, including singles "Crutch" and "Medicine." Although Haster is inspired by '90s nostalgia, they're heavy definition is a fresh second movement to compensate for SoCal indie-rock and EDM-flooded venues, playlists and airwaves.

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