Recently, we've been looking into smaller bands with loads of potential. Turns out, there's so much undiscovered talent out there. A perfect example is the 'genre wandering' band Valise from Dallas. The guys got bored of school and got into making music together and it paid off. They put out their first studio album 'Young Bloomer' and it made us hungry for more! Currently, Valise is touring the US together with Macy Gray.
We had the chance to ask them some questions for you guys, so you can get to know the band too.
1.You've put out a great album, 'Young Bloomer'. Knowing what you know now, if you could do it again, would you do anything differently?
I think a lot artists (myself included) can be haunted by that 20/20 hindsight feeling after releasing an album. It seems all too convenient, though. Young Bloomer was a huge step forward for us creatively, so really no, I wouldn’t change a thing about it. At some point, it’s just time to put the magnifying glass down and enjoy the ride! I’d rather channel that critical energy into creating the next album.
2. You call yourself genre-wandering, anything in particular you guys want to try/explore on new material in the future?
I feel like we just try to avoid being a "single concept" band, if that makes sense. We don’t want someone to look at us and say, “Oh, Valise - yeah, THAT’s their thing”, which might seem counter-intuitive, but for us ended up being pretty liberating in the studio. It would give us the right to intentionally mash up influences from very different artists just to see what happened, like “What would a Beach House song sound like if Muse played it?” It felt like a peculiar way of doing things for us, but it made the creative process feel fresh and exciting. I expect we’ll continue down that path with new material, too.
3. You guys have opened for great bands such as Death Cab for Cutie & Copeland, do you guys prefer being a support act for a huge artist or playing intimate headline shows?
I love staring at the faces of hundreds of people who have no idea who we are, just thumping on their watches waiting to watch a great band like Death Cab, and then just laying it all out there - like it’s our only shot to win them over. That adrenaline rush is unmatched, and I mean, those are just the types of things you fantasize about no matter how big you are.
Though, at the end of the day, those people still aren’t singing your songs - which is the point of it all, in my opinion. That's what takes things from being a performance to being an experience, which leaves a bigger print in everyone's heart. The shows where I’ve been able to really connect with people in smaller venues can echo in my mind for weeks. It’s an absurd flattery to travel half-way across the country to a place we’ve never been to see even just one person singing along. It's been exciting seeing those numbers grow!
4. What were your biggest influences on 'Young Bloomer’?
I definitely was inspired by some of the new stuff bands like The National, Phoenix, and Grizzly Bear had recently put out, but there was also room for some classic big-hitters like Muse and Coldplay to trickle into the writing process.
5. When can we expect new material from 'Valise’?
Hopefully in 2016 - we’re all itching to lock ourselves in a room for two months and see what happens. Right now, it’s all about introducing ourselves to every ear we can crawl into!
6. You guys are going to tour with Macy Gray next month! What do you guys expect from this tour? Are you excited?
These types of things are always so unpredictable when you're a new band like we are. But, I can say that we were absolutely honored when the opportunity landed on our door step to tour with a Grammy-winning artist like her. Macy Gray is incredibly talented and absolutely nothing like us, which we're excited to see on the same stage.
7. You made a music video for 'Charlie Gray' early this year, what was that like?
We had a blast shooting this video. The way I see it, this video is what would flash before
your eyes right before your relationship dies, so we basically we wanted to, sort of, capture this happy montage of memories of a relationship and put it up against this sad song. So, we took a road trip down to Austin with a couple friends and made it our mission to have the most fun humanly possible. It was a success.
8. As a new band who's had an explosive start, do you have any advice for other starting bands?
Go to shows, listen to music, and write as much as possible. Some people strike gold on their first go at it, some on their 50th, so don’t get discouraged if what you’re doing isn’t working yet. Just keep getting better and it’ll happen. We're still trying to figure it out too.
9. Is there anything else you'd like to say to Strife's readers?
If you buy our album on iTunes - we'll ship you a physical copy for free! Thanks for reading!
The New Jersey music scene is famous for producing some of the greatest bands of our generation, for example the almighty My Chemical Romance hail from New Jersey. It's no surprise that the scene is bursting with raw talent waiting to be discovered by music hungry fans across the world; today we caught up with one of the best underground bands the state has to offer. My Lonely Heart are a four piece band fronted by Chris Russo, with powerful vocals complimented with rhythmic guitar pieces. On lead guitar we have Danielle DiMeola (Dee) whom perfectly creates a PVRIS-esc vibe to MLH. The unique bass parts are brought to us by TJ Haefner. And last but not least, newcomer to the band Adam Rarela completes the great sound that is My Lonely Heart! These guys are going places so join their journey now and you won't regret it, we promise!
New Hampshires own Our Last Night took the time out of their busy schedule to give us some of the inside scoop on their new record Younger Dreams, touring life, their ideal line-up and much more. The Post-hardcore band from the US released Younger Dreams on the June 16th of this year; check it out if you haven't already. Our Last Night also tell us how they came up with their band name and discuss writing and making their new album without any help from their label. Buckle up kids, this is going to be a bumpy ride!
1. You guys just released 'Younger Dreams', how was the writing & recording process for this album and was it any different than for the previous albums?
This was the first full length we did completely on our own, with no label support. So yeah, it was much different. We did the entire record at our house here in California. Bought a bunch of gear, had our friend Bucket fly out from SLC and took a more relaxing approach to the record. We think it's our best one yet.
2. You make a lot of great covers, is there any specific way how you decide which songs you want to cover?
We usually pick top 40 radio songs because they are most relevant and thats usually what kids want to hear the most. It takes time picking the right song though, it has to already have a darker sound to the song, we have to be able to listen to the song and already hear what it would be like if we covered it. In other words, we couldn't just cover a random "KESHA" song if it sounds nothing like OLN (no hate towards Kesha... We love her.)
3. Which artists were your biggest influences for 'Younger Dreams'?
I think at the time, my brother and I were listening to a lot of The Neighbourhood & The 1975 so thats probably where you hear some of the indie type songs come from.
4. How did you come up with the name Our Last Night?
Over 11 years ago, we created a list of possible band names, and OUR LAST NIGHT was high up on the list. When you are young the name of the band isn't really the most important thing, its practicing & playing shows. We obviously liked the name OLN so we chose that. 11 years later, here we are... Still called Our Last Night.
5. You guys are going to be touring a lot, any cities/countries you're particularly excited for?
We always LOVE playing in Russia. The shows there are absolutely insane, and for some reason we seem to do very very well over there. Same thing goes for the UK & Main land Europe.
6. What would your ideal tour line-up be?
I would personally love to tour with bands like 21 Pilots, Imagine Dragons & Deftones. But if we are talking bands in our scene, I think an awesome tour would be us, Bring Me The Horizon & Beartooth.
7. You recently released a cover featuring Matty Mullins, are there any other artists you'd like to make a song or cover with?
We are actually in the talks of getting some other friends on a few different covers, so you'll have to wait till early next year to find out which ones.
8. What can we expect from Our Last Night in the future?
More music, more YouTube videos, more tours.
9. We've been in contact with a lot of new bands who are trying to make it as an artist, any advice for starting bands?
To never be afraid to try something that other bands aren't doing. Thats what got us to where we are today. And to also give your fans as much content as possible. Post as much music, post as MANY videos and use YOUTUBE as your main tool. Trust me... It works.
10. Anything else you'd like to share with Strife's readers?
Please check out our new record Younger Dreams and subscribe to our youtube channel for new covers, songs & vlogs. We love you all very much <3
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