Through strange and turbulent times, musicians and artists often feel a pull to write new material that releases or captures the tone of present day issues. But, sometimes, an older tune still perfectly capture what’s in front of you and can give you clarity and insight.
LA locals Death Valley Girls felt inspired by the latter and have reimagined two total ragers by musician Daniel Johnston in a new limited edition one-time pressing of 750 copies on Half Purple & Half Black colored vinyl that pairs Johnston’s singles “Breakthrough” and “Rock N Roll/EGA.”
“Breakthrough” is a song we were super into then became obsessed with once we found the lyrics,” says Bonnie Bloomgarden, the band’s vocalist and multi instrumentalists. “They are about breaking free from an invisible prison. At the time, we were studying Damien Echols, of the West Memphis 3, and his ability to overcome being wrongfully convicted and imprisoned on death row for 18 years. He became a magician, master meditator, and learned how to astral project. We asked him for a few tips on how energy, intention, and music can keep you strong in these strange times.”
With combined inspiration from Johnston’s music and Echol’s ability to overcome an insurmountable injustice, Death Valley Girls breathe new life into the tunes, treating them to a heavy dose of dusty desert rock. With heavy guitars, a driving rhythm that keeps its foot on the gas pedal and all the attitude to match, the vinyl release glistens with all the glitz of L.A. and speaks to those struggling to find their bearings amidst social unrest, shelter at home orders and an incompetent government.