PHOTOGRAPHY Darian Zahedi
WORDS Aamina Simone
Los Angeles-based punk quintet, Death Valley Girls make satanic-scorched, dystopian psychedelia with a sound that's best described as a cosmic, fast-tracked punch in the face. Self-proclaiming their music as "the soundtrack to your trip to outer space,” Bonnie, Larry, Jessie and Laura (The Kid) have garnered a reputation for their roof-smashing live sets. A listen to the title track of their highly anticipated debut album, Glow In The Dark (which is set to release on June 10) should be enough to convince you.
Unfortunately the Death Valley Girls weren't available to answer these questions...Luckily I had the time to answer for them.
How did the name Death Valley Girls come about?
SATAN: I always wanted to create a musical group like the Monkees, it was a concept that I had been working on since my trip to Death Valley in the summer of '69The name was inspired by that trip. I should also mention my favorite celebrities Moon Unit Zappa, Nicholas Cage & Susan Atkins were influential in the naming of the band. I can't imagine DVG would choose it for any other reasons.
Have they ever been to Death Valley together?
SATAN: Everywhere they go, they go together. Death Valley included. Allegedly they are planning to fix up The Barker Ranch and turn it into the compound of love it was always meant to be.
What’s "dystopian doom boogie”?
SATAN: What isn't it. This is the future. Humans can still eat from the sea and fields, they should be thankful, Death Valley Girls know this and want to sing the praises especially during these apocalyptic times.
Do they have a spirit animal?
SATAN: I'd guess The Fry Girls and The Hamburgler.
Bonnie // Nicole
They have multiple references to outer space, what’s the story behind that?
SATAN: It makes me laugh out loud watching you humans! Running around in circles worrying about the color of other people's skin! Look up! Space is the place!
How did Death Valley Girls come up with their nicknames?
SATAN: I came up with them.
How was it for them playing at Third Man Records in Detroit? Did they see Mr. White?
SATAN: Mr. White is a dear friend of mine. Third Man is simply delectable!! And as the inventor of Rock and Roll and debauchery it is my opinion that Death Valley Girls love and are influenced by no place in the world more so than Detroit. They seemed to ooze so much excitement while at Third Man it almost made me blush.
What’s they're writing process like?
SATAN: Nobody writes songs. They live in the ethers. Sometimes I pass them down, sometimes they come from the stars, but every time a song comes it is magic.
Super stoked for the new album, Glow In The Dark. What can we expect?
SATAN: Personally I am a huge fan of this record. It's concept was what first brought my attention to DVG. When I heard that a band of mortals was making a record to possibly coerce the dead to wake up from 10,000 years of slumber, of course I was intrigued! After they played a show at The Natural History Museum for mummies and wrote all new songs in hopes of introducing Rock and Roll to the Egyptian dead. It was there that they realized the power music should have, and now there was no going back... Shortly after that night they recorded the live mummy set, all those songs with their newly acquired musical mission to awaken and reawaken the souls of all! I'd be lying if I said I wasn't truly excited to see how this manifests when the record comes out in June.
Where do you think punk music is at in 2016?
SATAN: Personally I only care about Rock and Roll. Seems like there are too many rules to qualify as a punk these days - that's not why I invented that lifestyle.
The Kid // Larry
When they aren’t playing or making music, what else do they do creatively?
SATAN: They seem to sleep and dream a lot.
Who are some of the people they follow closely? In music, film, art, etc.
SATAN: Me. Or else! And Iggy Pop.
If they could have a super power, what would it be and why?
SATAN: I know mine would be to make wine into water, that would be cool, too much wine here in hell, not a lot of water.
Do they remember the first live gig they ever went to?
SATAN: Not sure about them, but I remember the first Dead gig I went to, Jerry and The Boys did a 60 minute version of Dark Star, thankfully I was on 4 tabs of Blue Sunshine.
Goodnight from hell,