Hala - pronounced haw-luh - is the performance moniker of Detroit-based musician Ian Ruhala. "Why Do You Want Anything To Do With Me?," his latest single, is inspired by punk pioneers The Clash, Richard Hell, and The Damned, and their ability to make radical pop within the idiomatic constraints of rock music.
This track was written as a response to the battle for prison reform for non-violent offenders, and doubles as a critique of the social stigma that is placed upon anyone unlucky enough to be caught inside a deeply arbitrary system of criminal justice. Ruhala is a talented multi-instrumentalist, who loves to explore the complex, poignant, life-and-death impermanence of a snappy pop song. "Why Do You Want Anything To Do With Me?" joins an effusive indie-pop groove with playful, pulsating bits of Nintendo-inspired keyboard sounds. The result is a resonant celebration of indignant self-reference, and a testament to the untapped well of human talent that lurks just beyond the obvious.