QUEEN KWONG Releases Cathartic New Album “Couples Only”

“If the brooding first single “I Know Who You Are” is any indication, Callaway is clearly channeling her recent physical and mental traumas, resulting in what sounds (and looks to be) her most visceral work yet. But it’s not all doom and gloom. Surprisingly, there are luminous moments of levity, such as the shimmery and upbeat synth-pop single that is ‘Without You, Whatever.’” – The A.V. Club

“With “Without You, Whatever,’ Callaway breaks away from the stately arrangements and dark instrumentals of her previous two singles and instead crafts a shimmering indie pop gem.” –Under The Radar

“Her vocals, which range from snarling to waif-like, loosing emotional carnage over often-harsh guitars, heavy synths and feedback, delicate one song and doomy the next. That her creative process is stubbornly stream-of-consciousness make Queen Kwong’s releases especially challenging” – 

“Carré Callaway’s tough-as-nails attitude mixes oddly with her esoteric innocence. You wouldn’t expect the freckled-face singer to lead a ‘visceral rock’ band named Queen Kwong.” – LA Weekly

“Singing through a stinging lyrical letter… ‘I Know Who You Are’ borders the delirium and darkness of divorce and finding a way out.” – Flaunt

“The first single, ‘I Know Who You Are’ is an absolute shiver-inducing stunner, with its haunted, slow-build introduction, jarringly jagged grooves, and thundering, industrial-punk sonics.” BlackBook

Releases New Cathartic New Album Couples Only

Out Now via Sonic Ritual

JULY 12, 2022 (Los Angeles, CA) — QUEEN KWONG, aka Carré Kwong Callaway, has released her new album Couples Only. Available today via Sonic Ritual, the record  includes the recent singles “On The Run” (featuring Roger O’Donnell of The Cure), “I Know Who You Are,” and “Without You, Whatever.”

The product of a tumultuous few years for Carré, in which she was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis and told she may only have a decade left to live before going through a divorce, Couples Only is an outpouring of pure feeling and visceral thought. It captures every emotion that comes with both the grieving and recovery process, arriving a testament to the endurance of the human spirit. Whilst unashamedly focussed on the darkest period of Carré’s life, it doesn’t wallow. It can be accusatory and violent, but there’s no time wasted on self-pity. “It’s not a fun record,” Carré admits, “but, at times, it’s a funny one.”


Queen Kwong - Without You, Whatever (Official Video)
QUEEN KWONG – “Without You, Whatever”

It’s the maelstrom of those raw feelings recorded in real-time that serve as the common denominator on a record that spans multiple musical genres, refusing to settle for just one style. As with every Queen Kwong album, Couples Only was entirely improvised and recorded on the spot—nothing was pre-written lyrically or musically.

For three weeks, Carré and longtime producer Joe Cardamone (The Icarus Line/Dark Mark vs Skeleton Joe) crafted about one song a day, which would eventually be whittled down to the final 11 songs. The resulting album assembles a notable cadre of contributing musician friends including previously mentioned Roger O’Donnell (keyboards), SwansKristof Hahn (lap steel) and Blood Red Shoes’ Laura-Mary Carter (backing vocals) who appear on assorted tracks on the LP – it’s Carré setting the record straight, and this time around she’s taking no prisoners.  

What The Press Is Saying:
There’s something purely magical about Queen Kwong’s new single “Without You, Whatever,” an enchanting dose of lush dream-pop… It’s also one of the best tracks of 2022 we’ve heard so far, possessing a dream-like art-pop quality that allows us to swandive into repeated listens without ever feeling smothered.” – Vanyaland

Queen Kwong 
Photo Credit: Darian Zahedi

“Her album Couples Only wanders through betrayal, loss, the realization of one’s mortality, and the impermanent of everything we know and cherish.” – 

“Callaway’s ethereal soundscapes douse her history in gasoline before her sharp lyricisms strike a match, her torment howling and flickering before her.” – Clash

“With a swaggering bass rhythm and layers of sharply distorted guitars and feedback, the song [‘I Know Who You Are’] relates to Kwong’s approach to music as a means to cope with trauma, the lyrics at once ugly and cathartic at the revelation of toxicity in a relationship and the necessary separation from it.” – ReGen Magazine

“Powerful, creepy, beautiful… Callaway has often been compared to the likes of Iggy Pop or Patti Smith.  That’s fair (and flattering), but if she keeps building and changing, Callaway’s music will allow no comparisons.”  – BUST

“’I Know Who You Are’ commences with a slow burning, atmospheric introduction comprised of dream-like soundscapes, before heavily distorted, razor sharp guitars and Callaway’s mesmeric vocals filter in to make up the verses.” – Louder Sound

“Queen Kwong creates a romantic ballad that’s anything but. The video [‘On The Run’] doesn’t end well for the contestants, but the song is heartfelt and self-aware. You can slow-dance to this!.” – Riff Magazine

“Industrial sounding with potent lyrics and ethereal vocals, ”I Know Who You Are” melts into your brain like a liquid hot metal swirling around and hissing until finally cooled.” – Grimy Goods

 “[It’s] an album that is stylistically diverse; from the dark, throbbing of ‘I Know Who You Are,’ to the fuzzy doo-wop sound of latest single ‘On the Run.'” – The Indy Review

“The experimental rock cut offers up off-kilter and ominous melodies, coupled with Callaway’s hypnotic vocals.” – Stereoboard

Queen Kwong has been making music since 2005 when she was discovered by Trent Reznor who invited her to open Nine Inch Nails’ With Teeth tour (2005), and again in 2009 and 2018. She has released two albums (Get a Witness in 2015 and Love Me to Death in 2018) and two EPs (2013’s Bad Lieutenant and 2019’s Oh Well).

Needless to say, Couples Only is Carré setting the record straight, and across these 11 songs, she takes no prisoners.  It is out today via Sonic Ritual.  

Couples Only

1. I Know Who You Are
3. Sad Man
4. Death In Reverse
5. The Mourning Song
6. No Rules
7. Stanley (RIP)
8. On The Run
9. Biggest Mistake
10. Giver Taker Faker
11. Without You, Whatever

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