By Crystal Harrell

The Coachella Valley music scene is making waves, and one act riding that current of creativity with its rhythms and grooves is Saving Slytherin. The band, comprised of Noel Oliva, who is the vocalist and guitar player, and Ricky Valadez, who plays drums, have released a new EP entitled “Chicano Wizard”. The members of this dynamic duo are the original founders of Saving Slytherin.

Akin to John Mayer meets Red Hot Chili Peppers, their sound is reminiscent of indie soundscapes, although Oliva describes it as difficult to pinpoint an exact genre for Saving Slytherin. The “Chicano Wizard” EP, for example, is a mix of genres—from rap to metal and indie.

“The EP took about three months to complete. Other people involved in the EP were some producers at 111 Entertainment, a local music production studio. My favorite song is definitely the first song on the EP ‘Chicano Wizard’. The first song is also the name of the EP,” teased Oliva.


While there are currently no live performances planned for the “Chicano Wizard” EP for now, Saving Slytherin is using the time and the band’s energy to build a stronger online presence for their musical projects for now.

Saving Slytherin was formed in 2021 and has already made an impact in the local music scene, although Oliva has been playing music all his life. The group has garnered over a thousand cumulative views on their YouTube channel, with official music videos for “Drink Some Water,” “Palm Trees,” “1901,” and “Dank Red Shoes” viewable online. Saving Slytherin has also performed on KESQ News Channel 3.

“The studio sessions to make this EP were fun. It’s always a good time when recording music. Hopefully the music collective that is Saving Slytherin can continue to reach people’s ears and hearts,” shared Oliva.

Oliva regards himself to be a big Harry Potter fan and got inspiration for the band name from the Slytherin house mentioned in the books and movies. He considers his main musical influences to be Metallica and the Beatles.

“I named myself Saving Slytherin as an alias for my music, but I also consider it a band name. Everyone that has contributed to the songs and videos is considered part of the Saving Slytherin family,” said Oliva.

Saving Slytherin’s favorite song to play is called “1901,” but the band is exited for the new music on the horizon for the eager following that they have been building.

Regarding advice that the band would give to other musicians who are just starting to dip their toes into the pool of music performance, Oliva advises not to second-guess yourself.

“Thank you to any of the people out there who listen to our music and supports the group. Shout out to Frank Lemus for the EP cover artwork. Anyone who came to our live shows were the real MVPs. We love you guys,” expressed Oliva.

To hear Saving Slytherin’s music, just type in “Saving Slytherin” in the YouTube search bar or visit the band’s Instagram @saving_slytherin_.