Queen Kwong’s debut album ‘Get A Witness’ is an emotional rollercoaster, encompassing the overtly different sounds of face-melting rock, 90s grunge and droning psychedelia.
At age 17, Callaway was snapped up by Nine Inch Nails’ frontman Trent Reznor, after an impressive display at his New Orleans studio. This led to her opening for the band during their 2005 With Teeth tour and she was soon to move to LA under Rezner’s guidance. Following a short hiatus, Callaway formed Queen Kwong, an alt-rock quartet with a star-studded line up. The group consists of Limp Bizkit guitarist Wes Borland, former Marilyn Manson bassist Fred Sablan and AWOLNATION drummer Hayden Scott.
As previously mentioned, the record is the band’s debut LP and the first full-length appearance from Callaway since her discovery in 2005. It falls just after the release of two EPs ‘Love Is A Bruise’ in 2010 and ‘Bad Lieutenant’ in 2013. That being said, the record communicates as the product of a decade of blisteringly hard work.
At first glance ‘Get A Witness’ may appear to lack substance due to its fairly limited tracklisting, fortunately this is not the case as the record is an immersive journey that encompasses a broad scope of emotions. ‘Cold Daggers’ is straight to tear things up and exudes the group’s ferocious nature, while later track ‘Love Me’ is a poignant love ballad comprising of the delicate arrangement of organ and vocals.
‘Red Devil’ is one to approach with an err of caution as even the most hardened of listeners will find themselves lost within its wash of mesmerising hooks. Despite remaining drongingly repetitive it’s a vivid psychedelic journey that calls for a revisit.
Closer ‘Bells On’ takes things full circle, signalling a return to the fuzzy guitars and gritty vocal of the aforementioned ‘Cold Daggers’. Callaway is soon to expose her claws and her abrasive yowl perches perfectly upon the tracks driving bass.
Testament to a decade of blood, sweat and tears, Carre Callaway’s brainchild Queen Kwong have delivered a formidable debut that has shattered its professed limitations. To put things bluntly, ‘Get A Witness’ is simply perfection.