Holy Rolling Empire, which spent several years as of Tucson’s biggest drawing rock bands, is reuniting for a free show Thursday.
Though Holy Rolling Empire never officially broke up, the band has performed sparingly since singer Orin Shochat moved to Los Angeles in 2012 and hasn’t played a show at all in about 18 months.
Guitarist Noah Horton says the reunion gig came together serendipitously on short notice: Shochat was planning a visit around the same time his sister’s band, the Los Angeles-based duo 222, was looking to schedule a Tucson show. Hermanitos will join Holy Rolling Empire and 222 for the free show, March 17 at Flycatcher.
The reunion show comes as the band—Shochat, Horton, guitarist Ian Carstensen, drummer Dave Mertz and bassist Geoffrey Hidalgo—has its sights set on a new album, Horton says.
“On really short notice we said ‘Let’s get back together and play and reignite the fire,’” Horton says. “We’ve been talking over the past year about at least getting back together and cutting a new record. At the time Orin left town, we had probably eight or nine songs in the can we were looking to record. Everybody got busy and life got in the way and that never materialized, but it’s not like we ever officially disbanded or anything.”
Holy Rolling Empire’s members have remained musically busy during the band’s hiatus, forming new bands including Texas Justice and Neon Eon and collaborating in other groups including Asian Fred and XIXA.
“We never stopped talking to each other. We send these lofty-goal emails to each other back and forth talking about the new record,” Horton says. “We can back into the groove of things and hopefully that will jumpstart the recording process.”