Death Valley High...The Real Deal!!!
Author(s): Valentina Mungia
Photos: Valentina Mungia
Editor: Sam Smith
Published: March 13, 2012
Boomers Bar in Las Vegas was in for a rockin' good night with one of San Francisco's hottest local bands in town! As I entered into the bar it had that "dive bar" feel to it, and I was pleased to notice there was a good crowd. Shortly after arriving, the band members showed up and I had the pleasure of sitting down with them. Not only are they an awesome band, but they are some of the greatest bunch of guys you will ever meet!
Since 2006, Death Valley High has touched the hearts of the people in the northern California Rock scene, a sentiment that seem to continue to everywhere they travel! On the night of October 27th at Boomers Bar in Las Vegas, they had the crowd ecstatic and ready to rock out as they took the stage playing their first song of the night, "Black Friday"! As Reyka (lead vocals/guitar) began to sing I noticed he had an edge to his vocals similar to that of Deftones, which I thought sounded stellar!
As they continued on, each band member delivered their own unique style on the stage, together making the show a success! As I watched and listened to the lyrics I found myself in a mindset of life and fantasy. I love it when a song can take you to a world in your mind! The second song, "She Wants To Kill" was one of my favorites and I was impressed with Adam Bannister's performance on the drums. He was hitting it with the utmost precision and by the crowd's reaction, they loved it! Ambient dark fantasy, mind searching, and a world of imagination are what went through my own mind as I sat and enjoyed the show. Going forth they played a few more great songs and when they belted out "Multiply", which is a fantastic hit of theirs, hands were in the air and the place was rockin' out! Huffy was putting on a great act with his bass and moving around on the stage. The song was played beautifully and Reyka never ceases to amaze with the breathtaking sound of his vocals! Chris was jamming' his guitar and with all of this great talent from each of these guys, they collaborated well.
All good things must come at the end of the set! When Death Valley High played their last song of the night, "DVH The Movie", the notch was cranked up to a ten plus! Not only do these four amazing guys put on a great show with an abundance of energy, they have fun on that stage. When I had spoken to Reyka before the show he had expressed to me how it does not matter what stage they play on or where they are at, they just enjoy entertaining the people. I definitely hope they play Vegas again because they were wonderful and all I can say is that everyone in Boomers Bar had a blast with Death Valley High!
INTERVIEW WITH REYKA OSBURN FROM DEATH VALLEY HIGH
Valentina: What or who influenced you to become a performer?
Reyka: I have loved music from day one. I used every opportunity from school talent shows, to prom nights, to get up and either sing at the top of my lungs, or play in an "air band". I guess I've always had it in me to perform. Kiss was always a fun band to emulate. The Cars, Black Flag and/or Motorhead were always fun to mix in there as well.
Valentina: How did the band come together?
Reyka: Death Valley High came together after writing and recording the first album. The idea was more or less a recording project. Then I wanted to start playing the songs out live, so I recruited friends from other bands and started to play shows locally. It's been through a couple of different lineups but the four of us now have been together since the last record, "Doom, In Full Bloom". It's easily what will be the lineup until we no longer exist.
Valentina: How is it touring from day one up to now?
Reyka: Touring is the best. There are rough patches here and there but if you can roll with the punches, it's always the cheapest way to travel, play shows, and make new friends. Since gas prices will never be the same, touring is a lot different then back in 2006. It's become highly necessary to have fans come out to support. Without our fans, we're nothing.
Valentina: What does Death Valley High stand for? Is there a meaning behind the band name?
Reyka: The name Death Valley High stemmed from the books and TV show 'Sweet Valley High', a series based around two twin girls and their misadventures in high school. Even though the girls are identical, they were very different at their core... We use that thread of duality to our theme, a positive and a negative; it's just the balance of things. There can't exist one without the other. So thematically, the idea was to have DVH make something beautiful from something ugly, or something harsh from something soft, something fun from something gloomy and vice versa.
Valentina: Do you have a favorite song of yours? If so, which one and why?
Reyka: "Singled Out" is one of my favorites from the first album. It was the first DVH song ever written. I also love "Days and Days" from our last record. It was the last song written for the album.
Valentina: Where do you see yourself going in the future?
Reyka: In the near future, I want to be producing as much music as possible, through Death Valley High and other projects to be announced soon.
Valentina: I thank you for your time and it was a great pleasure to do this interview. I hope to see Death Valley High play here in Vegas more often in the near future.
Death Valley High is:
Reyka Osburn-Lead Vocals/Guitar
Huffy Hafera-Bass/Backup Vocals