High Desert Queen Post “Time Waster”; Palm Reader Out May 31

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 2nd, 2024 by JJ Koczan

Check out High Desert Queen, bringing hot-shit riffs and plenty enough for the whole class. If you were concerned of a sophomore slump from the Austin-based four-piece, I would think that between the first single “Ancient Aliens” and the C.O.C.-style groove of the today-unveiled “Time Waster” — the succession of one to the other could hardly be more appropriate; I definitely wasted a lot of time watching that show — there’s some measure of relief and rightly so.

My big question going into Palm Reader was how the band would internalize all the time they spent on stage in the wake of their Ripple-issued 2021 debut, Secrets of the Black Moon (review here), and I think you can see in both the self-awareness of the self-tag ‘Texas desert rock,’ employing the state as both an aesthetic entity and geographic locale, the drive toward recording live in the studio, and the resulting big, energetic and engaging sound of the tracks they’ve put out thus far, the answer to that is beginning to take shape.

I’ve got a track premiere slated for April 30, and not that I think anyone’s waiting for it, but I’ll review then as well — that’s a month before the record’s actually out, so still dumbass-early — but I can’t think of much one might ask an American heavy rock band to be that High Desert Queen either aren’t now or aren’t on their way to being.

From the PR wire:

High Desert Queen

High Desert Queen share “Time Waster” single from forthcoming Magnetic Eye Records debut

Album preorder: http://lnk.spkr.media/high-desert-queen-palmreader

HIGH DESERT QUEEN’s sophomore full-length “Palm Reader” is bursting with raw energy and radiates the feeling of 666 diesel horses thundering loud. The album is crammed with cool vibes, ripping leads, and a ton of desert fuzz with a focus on great songs rather than trying to stay confined within a corral of a particular style.

This untamed attitude took its creative high energy source straight from touring. When the band from Texas returned home after six weeks travelling the roads of Europe with the legendary FATSO JETSON and watching them improvising jams every night, they had also taken notes. Although a bit worn from the road, HIGH DESERT QUEEN could hardly wait to start recording. Not focusing overly on how parts were played, allowing themselves imperfections, and ditching the click, the music started to flow like never before. In the very first studio session after the tour, three new songs emerged.

Working within a live framework and mindset, the band from Austin, Texas hit the jackpot and “Palm Reader” bears witness to that claim. In more than one way, HIGH DESERT QUEEN have always been a bit different and much more than ‘another desert rock band’. Formed in Houston, Texas by singer Ryan Garney and guitarist Rusty Miller in 2019, the duo soon recruited drummer Phil Hook (MONTE LUNA) and relocated to Austin in 2020.

With the addition of Rusty’s daughter Morgan on bass, the band hit the ground running. The lone star shone bright when these four got together as desert rock had already endured a long rather dry spell of stagnation and was parched for an injection of fresh sounds.

HIGH DESERT QUEEN had what it takes to kick the scene into gear again. Their vast musical influences ranging from grunge to funk, old school metal to doom and much more provide an ideal foundation for new ideas and a rejuvenating approach to the genre. Their thunderous, fuzz-drenched anthems are delivered with a healthy dose of groove and catchy melodies, and get a massive boost from an emotional intelligence in their music that’s hard to find. The newly-minted sound is linked to the rich heritage of their environs, inspiring the style tag ‘Texas desert rock’.

Hard work and their obviously burgeoning talent resulted in an fast rise for HIGH DESERT QUEEN, beginning with their first record deal arriving thanks in part to their being hand-picked by ZAKK SABBATH’s Rob Blasko. Their debut full-length “Secrets of the Black Moon” arrived in 2021 and was immediately heaped with praise in the US and Europe in 2021, which kicked the doors open to touring and invitations to prestigious festivals both domestic and abroad. In March 2022, the Texans embarked on their first tour in support of SASQUATCH on the US West Coast.

Only two months later, HIGH DESERT QUEEN hit the roads of Europe as a headliner in June 2022, with a return to the other side of the Atlantic with FATSO JETSON in 2023. Underlining the fast rise of this live monster, the newcomers were booked for Desertfest London (UK) and Berlin (DE) and the Truckfighters’ Fuzz Festival (SE) among many others.

Answering the exponentially multiplying requests for new material from their steadily growing following, HIGH DESERT QUEEN flanked their live activities with the “Turned to Stone Ch. 8” split release with BLUE HERON, and contributed a track to “Best of Soundgarden Redux”, the latest instalment of the bestselling Magnetic Eye Records Redux series.

With “Palm Reader”, HIGH DESERT QUEEN have made a quantum leap in their evolution as the Texans found the perfect balance between the well-loved legacy of the desert rock genre and carving out their very own path. Fueled by the power and spirit of live music, this album rocks as hard and honest as can be done.

Release date: May 31, 2024
Label: Magnetic Eye Records
Style: Texas Desert Rock

HIGH DESERT QUEEN live:
23 MAR 2024 Austin, TX (US) The Lost Well +The Obsessed +Howling Giant +Gozu
24 MAY 2024 Lafayette, LA (US) Freetown Boom Boom Room
25 MAY 2024 Houston, TX (US) White Oak Music Hall
26 MAY 2024 Arlington, TX (US) Division Brewery
30 MAY 2024 Austin, TX (US) The Far Out Lounge
31 MAY 2024 Bryan, TX (US) The 101
01 JUN 2024 San Antonio, TX (US) The Amp Room
02 JUN 2024 New Braunfels, TX (US) Guadalupe Brewery
13 JUL 2024 Erfurt (DE) Stoned from the Underground Festival
26 JUL 2024 Neuensee (DE) Rock im Wald Festival
21 SEP 2024 Austin, TX (US) Far Out Lounge, RippleFest Texas

HIGH DESERT QUEEN are:
Ryan Garney – vocals
Phil Hook – drums
Morgan Miller – bass
Rusty Miller – guitar

https://www.facebook.com/highdesertqueen/
http://www.instagram.com/highdesertqueen
http://highdesertqueen.bandcamp.com/

http://store.merhq.com
http://magneticeyerecords.com/
https://www.facebook.com/MagneticEyeRecords
https://www.instagram.com/magneticeyerecords/

High Desert Queen, Palm Reader (2024)

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High Desert Queen to Release Palm Reader May 31; “Ancient Aliens” Video Posted

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 5th, 2024 by JJ Koczan

High desert queen (photo by @staceylovett)

I’d put the sophomore full-length from Austin, Texas, heavy rockers High Desert Queen, titled Palm Reader, among the year’s most anticipated LPs quickly enough. The four-piece issued their debut, Secrets of the Black Moon (review here), through Ripple Music in 2021 and immediately set about maximizing its impact with stage work. Tours in the US and Europe featured stops throughout 2022 and 2023 at Truckfighters Fuzz Fest (review here), Desertfest in London and Berlin, Ruination Festival, Esbjerg Fuzztival and others, and they have kept a steady social presence as well, with frontman Ryan Garney booking tours and running Ripplefest Texas under the banner of Lick of My Spoon Promotions. They have done more to push themselves and heavy rock in the last three years than most, and on top of that, the first record laid out a desert-informed take on heavy that was rife with personality.

Ahead of returning to Europe in Spring 2023, they released the Turned to Stone Ch. 8: The Wake (review here) split LP with Albuquerque’s Blue Heron, and they’ll venture abroad again this summer as confirmed by appearances at the venerable Stoned From the Underground and Rock im Wald festivals slated among the tour dates below, following the regional — mostly Texas — stint they’ll do around Palm Reader‘s May 31 release on Magnetic Eye Records. No doubt more tour dates will follow, and suitably enough, they’ll perform at this year’s Ripplefest Texas as well, alongside DozerMars Red Sky and what’s taken shape as one of the strongest heavyfest lineups I’ve ever seen in the US. They might tour around that too, even though they’re from Austin. Some bands just keep busy.

But future tour plans are secondary to the album announcement and first track streaming of today. “Ancient Aliens” — if you, like me, can see the guy from the History Channel in your head right now, we’re probably also hearing it said with the same sense of wonder — opens Palm Reader by building up around its riff and pushing through a multifaceted but accessible groove with what feels like energy born of and born for the stage. If live considerations were a factor in the songwriting, fair enough. I get big C.O.C. vibes off the guitar tone, but it’s got a modern and less-Southern forward roll to go with its hook and ample proportion of sound. If Palm Reader isn’t already among your own most anticipated 2024 albums, by the time they’re done riding that nod it might be. And if you need any more display of charm or effort-at-engagement or whatever it might be to get on board, the “Ancient Aliens” video is — inevitably — a They Live parody.

Info from the PR wire:

high desert queen palm reader

HIGH DESERT QUEEN release first single ‘Ancient Aliens’ and details of new album “Palm Reader”!

Texas desert rockers HIGH DESERT QUEEN release the video clip ‘Ancient Aliens’ as the first heavy single taken from their forthcoming sophomore full-length “Palm Reader”, which has been slated for release on May 31 via Magnetic Eye Records.

On further news, HIGH DESERT QUEEN announce the first set of many planned live dates for 2024. Please see below for all currently confirmed shows.

‘Ancient Aliens’ is a tongue-in-cheek video take on John Carpenter’s cult movie “They Live” that illustrates the difficulties for musicians in dealing with shifty managers.

HIGH DESERT QUEEN comment: “Our first new single ‘Ancient Aliens’ was also the first song that we recorded for the new album”, guitarist Rusty Miller explains. “When we just returned home from our 2023 summer tour, we were all still a little beat up and road worn. At the same time, we were completely fired up to be in the studio. Playing shows every night for six weeks gave us exactly what we needed for the new album. Our engineer Casey Johns did a great job capturing the raw energy and dynamics of our band with this song. We recorded it live without a click track and no overdubs to make it sound just how we play it live on stage.”

Tracklist
1. Ancient Aliens
2. Death Perception
3. Head Honcho
4. Palm Reader
5. Time Waster
6. Tuesday Night Blues
7. Solar Rain

Guest musician
Emma Näslund (GAUPA) – vocals on ‘Death Perception’

Recorded by Casey Johns at Yellow Dog Studios, Wimberley, TX (US)
Mixed & Mastering by Karl Daniel Lidén at Studio Tri-Lamb, Solna (SE)

Cover art & album design by PabloRR (72826). Photo by @staceylovett

HIGH DESERT QUEEN live:
23 MAR 2024 Austin, TX (US) The Lost Well +The Obsessed +Howling Giant +Gozu
24 MAY 2024 Lafayette, LA (US) Freetown Boom Boom Room
25 MAY 2024 Houston, TX (US) White Oak Music Hall
26 MAY 2024 Arlington, TX (US) Division Brewery
30 MAY 2024 Austin, TX (US) The Far Out Lounge
31 MAY 2024 Bryan, TX (US) The 101
01 JUN 2024 San Antonio, TX (US) The Amp Room
02 JUN 2024 New Braunfels, TX (US) Guadalupe Brewery
13 JUL 2024 Erfurt (DE) Stoned from the Underground Festival
26 JUL 2024 Neuensee (DE) Rock im Wald Festival
21 SEP 2024 Austin, TX (US) Far Out Lounge, RippleFest Texas

HIGH DESERT QUEEN are:
Ryan Garney – vocals
Phil Hook – drums
Morgan Miller – bass
Rusty Miller – guitar

https://www.facebook.com/highdesertqueen/
http://www.instagram.com/highdesertqueen
http://highdesertqueen.bandcamp.com/

http://store.merhq.com
http://magneticeyerecords.com/
https://www.facebook.com/MagneticEyeRecords
https://www.instagram.com/magneticeyerecords/

High Desert Queen & Blue Heron, Turned to Stone Ch. 8: The Wake (2023)

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Riffolution Festival 2022: Full Lineup Announced

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 23rd, 2022 by JJ Koczan

Wit a lineup that brooks no argument, Riffolution Festival 2022 is set for mid-September in Sheffield, UK. Note the likes of Truckfighters (whose Spring tour dates are waiting on rescheduling) and Godflesh up at the top, and a broad spectrum of subsequent heavies, from Spaceslug, Slomatics and Boss Keloid the first day to Raging SpeedhornSlabdragger and Mastiff the second. All told it’s 37 bands on three stages — which says to me the schedule is going to be tight, but doable — over the two days, and jeez, if you happen to find yourself in South Yorkshire early this Fall, one is hard-pressed to think of heavier way to spend that time. Hell, Stubb are playing. And King Witch. Right on

This is a lineup where bands will know each other, be familiar, be friendly, be drinking. You should go, join the party. And by you I mean me. Get out into the world again. It’s time, right?

As seen on the internet:

riffolution festival 2022

Riffolution Festival 2022 Lineup

Riffolution Festival 2022 full line-up is here, feast your eyes on our biggest event to date!

37 bands over 3 stages, at our new venue Network in Sheffield.

Big thanks to Scarlet Dagger Design for the amazing work on the poster.

Weekend + day tickets, as well as t-shirt bundles are available through the Riffolution Promotions website, and they’re already flying out.

If you wish to play next years show, we’re happy to listen to suggestions. Submit your details on the website or even show your support by grabbing a ticket and attending.

See you in September! https://www.riffolutionpromotions.com/festival

SATURDAY:
Truckfighters / Naxatras / Spaceslug / Witchrider / Ten Foot Wizard / Swedish Death Candy / AWOOGA / Slomatics / Boss Keloid / KING WITCH / Dystopian Future Movies / Hair of the Dog / Mountain Caller / Trippy Wicked and the Cosmic Children of the Knight / Stubb / Psychlona / Suns of Thunder / The Lunar Effect / Elder Druid / Regulus

SUNDAY:
GODFLESH / Raging Speedhorn / God Damn / Palm Reader / Svalbard / blanket / Slabdragger / Mastiff / Dog Tired / PIST / GURT / VIDEO NASTIES / Grave Lines / BEGGAR / Battalions / Gozer / Gandalf the Green

https://www.facebook.com/events/648287296240427
https://www.facebook.com/Riffolution/
https://riffolutionpromotions.bigcartel.com/

Godflesh, Post Self (2017)

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Cvltfest 2021 Announces Two-Day Lineup for November

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 20th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

cvltfest 2021 art banner

This is going to be a very heavy couple of days. Put together by the reignited Lizard King Promotions and Riffolution Promotions, the upcoming 2021 edition of Cvltfest will follow on from September’s previously announced Riffolution Festival (lineup here) in Manchester. Booked at Cafe Indie in Scunthorpe — also in the relative north of England, east of Manchester and Sheffield, bit south from Leeds, etc. — on Nov. 13 and 14, there is some spillover between the two events, as Desert Storm, Pijn, Ritual King, Ohhms and Ten Foot Wizard will play both, but hell’s bells, can you imagine complaining about that? These are festivals. Happening on Earth! Wonder of wonders!

It’s been three years since Cvltfest was last held, but part of bringing back Lizard King Promotions from out of whatever cavern was trapping it is indeed breathing new life into the event, and you can see in the lineup below, they’re not half-assing it whatsoever. This and Riffolution together are complementary beasts emphasizing just how slammed and slamming the UK heavy underground is.

Fucking a:

cvltfest 2021 poster

Cvltfest 2021 – Nov. 13-14 – Cafe Indie, Scunthorpe, UK

This is the 3rd rendition of Cvltfest having seen both Elephant Tree and Witchsorrow Headliner respectively in 2017 and 2018, 3 years have passed since including the year of the Rona.

Now after a long break break away Lizard King Promotions which turns 10 years old this May, makes a return with its most ambitious line up of riff worshiping titans ever.

Working alongside Riffolution Promotions who’ve who’ve collectively seen Riffolution Festival now fully sold out 5 months ahead of the event we now bring you Cvltfest 2021.

Event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1155620918226438/

We’re so happy to have been working with Riffolution Promotions on such a heavy festival. Tickets are live now, so get them while they’re hot.

Tickets: lizardkingpromotions.bigcartel.com

Beautifully crafted poster artwork by Dominic Sohor Design and a line up consisting of:

SATURDAY – Black Tongue / Palm Reader / Ohhms / Pijn / Hundred Year Old Man / Gurt / Mastiff / King Witch / Ritual King / Mountain Caller / Barbarian Hermit / Blind Monarch

SUNDAY – Raging Speedhorn / Slabdragger / Ungraven / Ten Foot Wizard/ Desert Storm / Corrupt Moral Altar / Old Man Lizard / Battalions / Goblinsmoker / Voidlurker

https://www.facebook.com/LizardKingPromotions
https://lizardkingpromotions.bigcartel.com
http://instagram.com/lizardkingpromotions
https://twitter.com/LizardKingPromo
https://www.facebook.com/Riffolution/
https://riffolutionpromotions.bigcartel.com/

Raging Speedhorn, Hard to Kill (2020)

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