Flashback. 2018. I am at The Liverpool International Music Festival at Sefton Park, reviewing the weekend’s events for a local magazine.
Much of my time was spent at the It’s Liverpool stage, given over to new local bands. There was a parade of good, worthy bands of all kinds and, in truth, it was easy to write positive reviews all round for this display of upcoming talent.
But then, Queen Zee took to the stage and suddenly everything changed.
They burst onto the stage like a sparkly pink hand grenade, a riot of noise, colour and power. The whole audience simply could not take their eyes off them, they had such energy, such verve, such fucking power that, within seconds, all the previous bands were made to look like the boring, clumpy, lead-footed dullards they suddenly were.
Queen Zee were that good, that different and that important.
They had that much sought after attraction, star quality. This isn’t something that can be taught or faked, you either have it or you don’t. And Queen Zee had it, in spades.
Flash forward a few months, and Queen Zee are playing at Liverpool’s 24 Kitchen Street venue. Again their star quality is immediately apparent, mostly in the form of singer Zee Davine. Zee is without doubt the star of the show. It has been a long time since we last saw someone blessed with this amount of charisma, performance and charm. Zee is a ball of boundless energy and he and the band are poised on the brink of a stardom so obvious that I make mental notes to pass on to people, perhaps as they headline Glastonbury, to boast that I saw them in such a small venue.
At this stage, it seemed like the only thing that could stop Queen Zee making it to the top was if Zee was poached for another route to stardom, such as TV. Zee is that obvious a star that this seems like a distinct possibility.
For a glorious shining moment, Queen Zee were, quite simply, the best band in the world. But then, towards the end of 2019, Queen Zee split up.
Yes we were gutted and we wept tears of bitter frustration at the loss of this spectacular band, but then we spoke to Zee and found out that great plans were afoot, things that would move Zee beyond the confines of a mere band.
The first sign of this is Zee’s new outfit Tokky Horror, who have released their first single, Girlracer, which can be bought on Bandcamp here.
Sun-13 was lucky enough to ask Zee Davine 13 Questions. Read on to find out more about coping with lockdown, looking for lizards and being lied to by Rita Ora.
1. Where are you and what are you doing and how is that working out?
“I’ve been home on Wirral all year and looks like I will be for the foreseeable. I’m finishing off the production on new Tokky Horror material for our upcoming release…“
2. How have you been coping with the lockdown situation?
“It’s bumming me out, I love what I do. I love playing music and touring. To not have done either of those for nearly a year now has taken a big toll on my happiness. I’m trying to lose myself in writing music and remind myself I’m very fortunate that I’m safe and fed and not grieving while so many people are having a tough time.”
3. Who is the nicest ‘celebrity’ you’ve met?
“Rita Ora lied to me once and said I have nice hair. At the time I was apologising to the hair stylist at the shoot about my neon orange mullet I had massacred myself while stoned. So thanks for trying to chill me out Rita.”
4. When did you last get into an argument?
“I’m not a very argumentative person so I have no idea! “
5. When did you last shout at the TV?
“I always talk to the TV, it’s my best friend. I give the characters advice as the plot unfolds. I’ve just watched #ALIVE and no spoilers, but it’s a zombie flick so there were plenty of “BEHIND YOU!“ moments.”
6. When did you last consider quitting social media?
“I don’t have any of the apps on my phone, and I only ever use the platforms for work related stuff. Updating about releases etc. If I could I wouldn’t have them at all. But being a musician, or producer, or DJ in 2020 really requires a level of self branding.”
7. Did you have any hobbies as a kid?
“Before I discovered music when I was about 10, I was obsessed with nature. I’d always want to be in the woods looking at bugs or going to the beach near me to look for lizards. I wanted to be a biologist like my Dad.”
8. What was the first gig you went to?
“I have a few answers to this. The first gig I tried to go to was The Coral at Liverpool Uni in maybe 2003? 2004? But turned up late and was then too young to be let in. So the first “proper gig“ I got to see was 65daysofstatic in Manchester Academy. They had a support band first on called Gay For Johnny Depp, who were this New York queercore band that blew my mind. And my first exposure to hardcore punk, so I left like I wanna do that.”
9. When were you last told off?
“I’m always getting told off! Normally for smoking in the house, so probably that.”
10. What’s your first memory?
“I have some really heavy first memories but a nice one is drawing an elephant on my first day of pre school.”
11. What’s your guilty listening pleasure?
“Probably some really shitty nu metal, some of it like early Slipknot has aged well but I still love Crazytown and P.O.D.”
12. Vinyl, CD, MP3 or Streaming?
“The only vinyl records I own are the ones I’ve written and the White Album by the Beatles that my grandad gave me, I’m normally skint and £20 is alot for me. I miss having stacks of CD’s that was my generations thing, walkmans and CD books, but now my laptop doesnt even have a CD drive. Most the music I listen to now is streamed, so as much as I hate it, streaming for the ease. “
13. Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. Is there anything else you’d like to say?
“I’ll plug the new single “Simulate Me“ which is out October 14th”