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Headline: If the raw emotional power of Asking Alexandria and the intricate musical landscapes of Sevendust had a lovechild, it would be Vaquero. Hailing from Melbourne, Australia, Vaquero merges alternative metal’s intensity with metalcore’s depth, all while embarking on a lyrical journey through the shadows of the psyche, guided by the spirit of resilience.

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Alternative Rock, Alternative Metal, Metalcore
Asking Alexandria, Bad Wolves, Bad Omens, Sevendust, Burn Halo



Vaquero, hailing from Melbourne, Australia, is the musical brainchild of Travis Presley. This alternative rock/metalcore project blends the intensity of alternative metal with deeply introspective lyrics and compelling compositions. Inspired by the resilience and loyalty of Doc Holliday from the film Tombstone, Vaquero embodies the spirit of facing life’s adversities head-on. Their debut single, “Stranger,” dives into the concept of embracing one’s shadow self, drawing on Carl Jung‘s psychological theories. With influences ranging from Asking Alexandria to Sevendust, Vaquero offers a fresh take on the genre, combining raw emotional delivery and intricate musicality. Behind Vaquero is a story of perseverance, from Travis’s beginnings in Sacramento, playing with Burn Halo, to reinventing his musical journey in Australia. Vaquero stands as a testament to the transformative power of music, inviting listeners on a journey of self-exploration and resilience.

Emerging from Melbourne, Australia, Vaquero, led by Travis Presley, is a compelling blend of alternative rock, metalcore, and alternative metal. The project, named after the resilient and loyal character Doc Holliday from Tombstone, mirrors Travis’s own life’s philosophy of facing challenges head-on. This ethos is deeply embedded in their music, particularly in their debut single, “Stranger,” an exploration of confronting and integrating one’s shadow self, inspired by Carl Jung‘s psychological concepts.

Vaquero’s sound is a unique concoction, with Travis’s raw vocal emotion and Dean Wells‘s intricate compositions creating a sonic landscape that’s both expansive and intimate. Drawing from a diverse range of influences, including Asking Alexandria, Bad Wolves, and Sevendust, Vaquero forges a path that pays homage to the giants of rock while carving out its own identity. Their music is not just an auditory experience but a journey that invites listeners to explore the depths of their psyche alongside the band.

Born in Sacramento and transplanted to Melbourne, Travis’s journey from playing with Burn Halo in the US to creating Vaquero in Australia is a testament to his undying passion for music and resilience in the face of life’s unpredictabilities. Vaquero is more than a band; it’s a narrative of perseverance, a beacon for those who find solace in music’s power to transcend life’s tumultuous seas. Join Vaquero as they navigate the landscapes of sound and emotion, promising a journey filled with introspection, resilience, and raw energy.

In the ever-evolving landscape of rock music, a new constellation emerges from the vibrant city of Melbourne, Australia—Vaquero. At its helm is Travis Presley, a musician whose journey transcends geographical and musical boundaries, embodying resilience, passion, and the undying spirit of rock. Together with Dean Wells, a maestro of composition, Vaquero is not just a band but a phoenix rising from the ashes of trials and transformations, poised to leave an indelible mark on the alternative rock, metalcore, and alternative metal scenes.

Travis Presley’s musical voyage is a testament to the transformative power of art and determination. Born on May 7, 1990, in Sacramento, California, Travis navigated the complexities of life with music as his compass. His narrative is rich with chapters of adversity, from personal tribulations to the relentless pursuit of musical excellence across continents. From the stages of the United States with Burn Halo to the shores of Australia, Travis’s story is a compelling chronicle of an artist’s relentless pursuit of his passion against all odds.

The inception of Vaquero is a narrative steeped in resilience and reinvention. The project is Travis’s brainchild, inspired by his admiration for the indomitable spirit of Doc Holliday and the Western classic “Tombstone.” It symbolizes not just a musical venture but a philosophical stance on facing life’s challenges head-on, with the “I’m your Huckleberry” attitude. This ethos is the bedrock upon which Vaquero is built, a beacon for those who navigate the tumultuous seas of life and seek solace in the harbor of music.

Vaquero’s debut single, “Stranger,” is a microcosm of the band’s musical and thematic universe. The track is an exploration of the shadowy realms of the psyche, inspired by Carl Jung‘s concept of integrating the shadow. Through “Stranger,” Vaquero embarks on an introspective journey, inviting listeners to confront their own inner darkness and embrace it. This theme of introspection and confrontation is a recurring motif in Vaquero’s oeuvre, reflecting Travis’s own philosophical inquiries and personal experiences.

Musically, Vaquero occupies a unique space in the rock genre. Their sound—a concoction of alternative rock’s raw energy, alternative metal’s complexity, and metalcore’s visceral intensity—is both familiar and fresh. Dean Wells’s composition and production mastery complement Travis’s emotive vocal delivery, creating a soundscape that is expansive yet intimate. Influences from bands like Asking Alexandria, Bad Wolves, and Sevendust are palpable, yet Vaquero’s sonic identity is distinctly its own. Their music is a tapestry woven with threads of melodic aggression, introspective lyricism, and dynamic composition, offering a sonic journey that is both cathartic and contemplative.

One can’t help but admire the audacity with which Vaquero navigates the rock genre’s crowded waters. Their debut single, “Stranger,” is a bold proclamation of the band’s musical vision and artistic identity. It’s a track that doesn’t merely seek to entertain but to challenge and provoke thought. The integration of alternative rock’s accessibility with the layered complexity of metalcore and alternative metal’s intensity showcases Vaquero’s ambition to redefine boundaries and expectations.

The thematic depth of Vaquero’s music, particularly the exploration of the self and the shadow, adds a layer of philosophical gravitas to their work. This isn’t rock music designed for passive consumption; it’s an invitation to an introspective voyage, a mirror reflecting the listener’s own inner landscape. In a genre often criticized for its adherence to formulaic structures, Vaquero stands out as a beacon of innovation and authenticity.

Vaquero’s journey is only beginning, with the release of “Stranger” marking the first step in what promises to be a riveting musical odyssey. Underneath the dynamic duo of Travis Presley and Dean Wells, Vaquero is more than a band—it’s a movement, a collective expression of resilience, introspection, and raw, unbridled emotion. Their music is a testament to the power of art to transcend the mundane, to transform adversity into strength, and to connect with the universal human experience.

As Vaquero continues to chart their course through the vast expanse of the music world, they carry with them the promise of genuine, impactful artistry. With each note, each lyric, they build bridges between souls, crafting anthems for the resilient, the introspective, and the unyielding. In the landscape of modern rock, Vaquero emerges not just as a new voice but as a harbinger of a new era—an era where music is not just heard but felt, experienced, and lived.


Vaquero "I'll Be Your Drug" single artwork
Vaquero "Stranger" single artwork


Run Time: 4:02

Release Date: April 29, 2024

Production, Composition, Mixing and Mastering: Dean Wells (Dean Wells Music)


Travis Presley
Travis Presley
Travis Presley
Travis Presley
Travis Presley
Travis Presley
Travis Presley
Travis Presley
Travis Presley


I am a normal working man with a wife, a dog named "Doc Holliday" and a regular normal Business; that has continued to pursue music as a passion despite multiple setbacks and hardships of life"
Never doubt the benefit of a glass of Bourbon Whiskey and Blues music next to a bonfire, good for the soul"
I came up with the idea of "Vaquero" after seeing the 1993 western "Tombstone", Doc Holliday struck a chord with me as his resiliency to any challenge and unwavering loyalty set a model in my head for how I wanted to approach the rest of my life. Ive legitimately ran head first into most of life's challenges with the "I'm your Huckleberry" attitude. I use the Vaquero moniker not just in music but for my business too."
This project was created out of the ashes of my previous musical venture "You'll See One Day" in which I had played guitar. I met Dean Wells through the singer. And when that project caved in on itself, Dean encouraged me to keep going and after months of looking for a new singer, was close to quitting permanently, Deano told me to give singing a try after I showed him some old videos from way back of me in a metal band back home in California. I gave it a try and day one ended with "You're the guy, dude".