“An aggregation of some of Brooklyn’s most profound talent.“ – Wonderland
– The Wild Magazine
Today, Roya share, via Wonderland, the second single from their debut self-titled record, “A Sickness.” The first track, “End Times” had been revealed, on Brooklyn Vegan, the day after the results of the American presidential election. The video accompanying the song tracks a hundred years of violent and disturbing history.
Earlier this week, Sunflower Bean’s Julia Cumming interviewed lead singer Rahill Jamaliard about being an Iranian American artist in 2017, and her experiences as a Farsi translator at the JFK travel ban protests, for NOISEY.
After a successful string of shows at SXSW, the band is back in New York, and will open for Allah-Las at Webster Hall tomorrow March 24th, and for Las Rosas at Baby’s All Right on April 8th, with Saint Pé (ex-Black Lips), and Breanna Barbara.
Roya’s debut self-titled album comes out June 2nd via Burger Records.
Roya, the poetic persian name of a little girl means an ominous dream, a mind trip, a fantasy. Such was the vision lead singer Rahill Jamalifard first had when hatching the idea for the band. A moody and seductive tone set against a primitive and surreal soundscape. Lending its voice to somber echoes and jangles of post punk and psychedelia. How often we wander to the uncomfortable depths of our darker minds, where unanswered questions live, where they stay carefully tucked away, still existing, unaddressed. In Roya, the exploration begins, confronting the fears and realities we struggle with. The mediocrity of life, complacency, death and its undoings, life and its great fragility, Roya invades the minds and hearts of its listeners greeting them with unwavering emotion.
The bands early formation consisting of singer Rahill Jamalifard, guitarist Jay Heislemann and drummer Hamish Kilgour set the foundation for Roya’s deliberately minimal sound. Kilgour, notable as a founding member of New Zealand’s seminal post punk band The Clean, plays shambolic and primitive driving drumbeats that add layers of depth and texture to his boldness. Heislmann’s guitar spills over Kilgour’s rhythmic web with deconstructed eastern surf riffs dripping wet with noisy undertones. This melodically demented outfit cradle Jamalifard’s stark and naked vocals that paint over each chorus with grief-stricken and doleful lyrics that are raw but gentle in delivery.
Joined later by contributing song writer and guitarist Christian Sawyer, whose presence was brief but significant, the band began to record their self titled debut record at the now defunct Death By Audio recording studio. Joining them during this time was bassist Alix Brown, whose spirited gusto added attitude and swagger with her driving grooves. In its current formation Roya is a five piece ensemble with Tyler Love on rhythm guitar and mellotron and Lyla Vander on drums. Their debut record is set to be released by Burger Records in June 2017.
03.24 – Webster Hall – New York, NY *
03.27 – 9:30 Club – Washington, DC *
04.08 – Baby’s All Right – Brooklyn, NY ^
* with Allah-Las, The Babe Rainbow
^ with Las Rosas, Saint Pé, Breanna Barbara