Thursday, April 4, 2013

Pitstop: Loud Valley

My discovery of Orlando band Loud Valley came, surprisingly enough, from reading a show bio. It was a strange sort of chance that led to me perusing Day Joy's bio for the Cameo Gallery gig opening for Secret Mountains' record release show despite knowing more or less exactly who they were (I had in fact seen them just the night before). And that perusal led to Loud Valley as I learned they and Day Joy share several members. Of course I was intrigued.

Loud Valley, the brainchild of Travis Reed, is another one of those genre-defying bands Florida seems to be churning out in full force these days. Unlike Day Joy, with whom the band now shares the majority of its members, Loud Valley isn't quite so melancholic; allowing itself brightly lit traverses alongside it's ear-opening, buoyant weaving of textures all while managing to sound rather straightforward. At times recalling sunkissed lounge days and at others giving in to darker tendencies. The band's only record at present, the self-titled full length, hits a rather large number of moods all the more effective due to the album's rather cohesive build up. Tracks seems to spring forth from the end of others; logical progressions from either brighter or darker, more layered moods established before. In fact, Loud Valley ends very much how it starts - a far more jubilant echoing of "Pensacola" on "Daytona Beach".

Actually, Loud Valley shares a lot in common with Lord Huron's Lonesome Dreams; both sharing a rather cinematic western feel (especially "The Refrain") with tracks that seem to conjure up images of wide-open sun-warmed lands. But where Lord Huron spins a rather clear-cut pop feel from his previous experiments, Loud Valley seems wholly content dwelling in less predictably linear territory.

Since the release of its debut, Loud Valley has undergone a couple changes - shedding many of its members and, if the more recent track "Orlando City Blues" is anything to go off of, it's sunnier tendencies. It's not exceptionally dark, but the  noticeably more jammy Loud Valley's track surrenders over the folk-recalling dream pop vibe in favor of a something far more garage rock. Not a particular head-scratching turn when going from Loud Valley's penultimate released track "Ruins". It's a different Loud Valley but one that still manages to make you interested in what's in store. Here's hoping not too long before we find out. Until then, check out more of their tunes via their Bandcamp.

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