Tag: Death Valley Girls

New Video: JOVM Mainstays Death Valley Girls Release a Hallucinatory and Menacing Visual for “Dream Cleaver”

Over the past handful of years, I’ve written quite a bit about the Los Angeles-based garage rock/psych rock/proto metal act Death Valley Girls, and as you may recall the act which is currently comprised of founding duo Larry Schemel (guitar) and Bonnie Bloomgarden (vocals, guitar) and a rotating cast of collaborators that includes Alana Amram (bass), Laura Harris (drums), Shannon Lay, members of The Make Up, The Shivas and Moaning, as well as The Flytraps Laura Kelsey can trace their origins to when they were formed by Schemel, Bloomgarden, Rachel Orosco (bass) and Hole‘s Patty Schemel (drums). 

Although they’ve gone through a series of lineup changes, the band’s sound and overall aesthetic throughout their recorded output has largely been influenced by The Manson Family and B movie theatrics while thematically their work has touched upon the occult. Last year’s Darkness Rains may arguably be among the most menacing and darkest of their growing catalog. The band has been busy touring over the past year or so since the release of their third album, but they’ve managed to set some time aside to write and record — with their latest single “Dream Cleaver,” being the first batch of new material from the act this year. 

Interestingly, the hook-driven new single finds the band’s sound subtly moving to a New Wave-like sound along the lines of The Psychedelic Furs and Echo and the Bunnymen, as you’ll hear brief blasts of bluesy saxophone floating over jangling guitars, gorgeous girls group-like harmonies paired with a motorik-like groove. And while possessing a newfound sheen, the manages to retain the menace and unease of their previously released material. 

Directed by Casey Rup, the recently released video for “Dream Cleaver” is a nightmarish and anxiety-including hallucination that follows three murderous witches as they search for materials for a neon-colored and bubbling potion. 


New Video: The Cinematic, B Movie Inspired Visuals for L.A. Witch’s “Drive Your Car”

Over the past couple of years, I’ve written a bit about the Los Angeles, CA-based indie rock/garage rock trio L.A. Witch, comprised of Sade Sanchez (lead vocals, guitar), Irita Pai (bass, backing vocals) and Ellie English (drums). And as you may recall, the trio have developed a reputation for crafting a grungy, garage rock sound that draws from late 50s-early 60s rock,  The Pleasure Seekers, The Sonics, The Black Angels, The Brian Jonestown Massacre and others — all while bearing a resemblance to JOVM mainstay artists The Coathangers, Sharkmuffin and Death Valley Girls.
The band’s self-titled, full-length debut was released last year through Suicide Squeeze Records, the label home of The Coathangers and others, and the album’s first single “Drive Your Car,” (which was also released as a 7 inch single back in 2016), is a grungy and gritty track featuring a propulsive rhythm section, chugging power chords fed through reverb and delay pedal paired with Sanchez’s sneering vocals — and while clearly resembling The Coathangers, the song manages to possess a malicious and murderous intent, along with some roaring hooks.

Directed and edited by Allie Lane, the incredibly cinematic video features a collection of badass ladies, including the members of L.A. Witch driving sweet cars through the desert, cut with footage of the band playing the song. Certainly, if you’re a photographer, you envy how rich the blues, browns and blacks came out under seemingly endless skies.

Now, if you’ve been following this site over the past couple of years of its seven year history, you’ve come across a handful of posts featuring the Los Angeles, CA-based indie rock/garage rock trio L.A. Witch. Comprised of Sade Sanchez (lead vocals, guitar), Irita Pai (bass, backing vocals) and Ellie English (drums), the trio have developed a reputation for crafting a grungy, garage rock sound that draws from late 50s-early 60s rock,  The Pleasure Seekers, The Sonics, The Black Angels, The Brian Jonestown Massacre and others — all while bearing a resemblance to JOVM mainstay artists The Coathangers, Sharkmuffin and Death Valley Girls

Suicide Squeeze Records, the label home of The Coathangers and several others will be releasing the band’s self-titled debut on September 8, 2017, and the album’s latest single “Kill My Baby Tonight” is a sultry and swaggering murder ballad full of chugging and jangling guitar chords played through copious reverb and delay pedal. Sanchez’s sneering, venomous vocals slash through a propulsive and stormy rhythm section; but unlike any of their previously released singles, the Southern Californian trio’s latest single reveals both a steely self-assuredness and some of their most ambitious songwriting to date.





Comprised of founding members Erin Jenkins and Mathieu Blanchard and recent recruits Chris Dadge (bass), who has had stints in Lab Coast, Alvvays and Chad VanGaalen‘s backing band; and renowned singer/songwriter and guitarist Samantha Savage Smith joining a guitarist, Canadian band Crystal Eyes can trace their origins to the melancholic dream pop the duo wrote while nomadically bouncing back and forth between Tofino, British Columbia and Halifax, Nova Scotia — dream pop that the band’s founding duo has claimed has drawn from Francoise Hardy, Guided by Voices.  As a relatively constituted quartet, the band has continued to tour across their native Canada, including consecutive appearances at Pop Montreal.

The band’s latest effort The Female Imagination was written while the band spent time on a lake island in rural Ontario and was recorded on a Tascam 388. And according to the band, the album thematically focuses on and explores the other side of ourselves that we can never quite seem tor reach. The album’s latest single “Already Gone” consists dreamy and ethereal harmonies with layers of shimmering guitars played through copious amounts of reverb and delay pedal and a persistent, driving rhythm and in some way, the song sounds as though it were equally influenced by 60s garage psych — i.e., much like contemporary acts like Raccoon Fighter, The Black Angels, early Dum Dum Girls, Death Valley Girls and countless others but with a moody and sensual feel.




New Video: Death Valley Girls Go-Go Inspired Take on Troma Films

“Disco,” the latest single off Glow In The Dark is a jangling and propulsive bit of psych rock, complete with droning organs that sounds as though it were indebted to The Jesus and Mary Chain but with a sneering, punk rock air — and a badass, in your face, self assuredness. Interestingly, the recently released music video was directed by Kansas Bowling, who recently directed BC Butcher, the latest release from proprietors of all things low budget gore and horror, Troma Films. As a result, the video is a proper send off to all things go-go but with a Satanic murderess, who kills people with records.

Comprised of founding members Bonnie Bloomgarden (lead vocals) and Larry Schemel (guitar), along with Nicole Smith (bass) and Laura Kelsey (drums),  Los Angeles, CA-based quartet of Death Valley Girls have deliberately shrouded themselves in mystery. Besides the fact that they’re incredibly photogenic, very little is known about them, except that their aesthetic is deeply influenced by old-school B movies and biker movies — in fact, at one point, the members of the band had developed a reputation for appearing at gigs wearing all leather and parking their beaten up bikes in old-school biker club formations. Now, over the years I’ve written about the band on a number of occasions — including “Gettin’ Hard,” a single that sonically owes a debt to The StoogesThe TroggsThe Ramones and contemporary acts including Lantern, while “Summertime” had the band taking up shimmering reverb-filled garage psych rock.

“I’m A Man, Too” off the Southern California-based quartet’s soon-to-be-released effort Glow In The Dark will further cement their reputation for crafting old-school-leaning rock — but in this case, in a bratty song that indirectly channels Cyndi Lauper‘s “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” The Go-Gos, The B52s, Nancy Sinatra  and others after a night of vodka, gin and cigarettes as a bratty and infectious hook and chorus are paired with simple and propulsive percussion and loose and bluesy guitar chords while revealing an in your face self-assuredness.

New Video: Go Out on a Tinder Date with Sharkmuffin in Williamsburg — Or Don’t Be This Tinder-fella

Currently comprised of founding members Tarra Thiessen (guitar, vocals) and Natalie Kirch (bass, vocals), along with Sharif Mekway (drums), the Brooklyn-based trio Sharkmuffin can trace their origins to when founding duo Thiessen and Kirch met […]