We Review the new EP from Valetta – ‘Your Future in an Email’
‘Your Future in an Email’ is the fantastic debut EP from Manchester based band Valetta. This four piece formed in the wake of previous bands, and deliver mature and nuanced alternative music, that brings together Indie Rock with psychedelia and progressive pop in a way that is truly mesmerising.
Their debut EP is a triumphant five track record that was forged in the ugliness of the last two years. The quartet say they faced an identity crisis when the pandemic hit and live music was taken away from us. “All of our songs were loud, immediate, and meant to be played live! Suddenly we couldn’t do that anymore. So almost by accident we started making a totally different kind of music.” Hopefully this sound is here to stay as ‘Your Future in an Email’ is an exciting release that holds great promise. With a pristine and polished sound, each well crafted track on this EP delivers in a different way, never staying still and always striving forwards.
‘Juggernauts’ opens this EP with a controlled and steady build. Emotions feel controlled and restrained until they are unleashed with a frenzy of swirling and wailing electric guitars. The guitar breakdowns on ‘Juggernauts’ and the second track ‘Irregular Low’ transport these songs into very different soundscapes, sounding quite experimental at times. You can hear how the band had fun in the studio, playing around with the non-liveness of this project and making full use of studio magic. Panning voices and layered effects mean that this record does not necessarily indicate how these guys sound live. This feels very much like a studio project, which means taking it on the road will be an exciting challenge, and one I’m sure these four will rise to.
‘Dead to the World’ is a rhythmically interesting song. Contrapuntal rhythms collide with delicate vocals that float with harmonies. This song was my favourite on the EP until I heard ‘Barbarian’, a soft and haunting track that is rich with a delicate beauty and simplicity. The lyrics on this EP are vast and prominent across the tracks, and sound like poetry in ‘Barbarian’. The layers of harmonies and subtle additions of additional instrumentation elevate this song beyond a simple ballad.
The EP closes with ‘The Idea of North’. This song sounds like how contentment feels. With a bit of a psychedelic Beatles vibe to it, this sweetly short tune is the perfect closer to the EP, and leaves us ready and wanting more. The vocals on this track are a respite from the intensity of some of the other songs on this EP, and is a hopeful epilogue to close out this collection of songs.
Overall, this is a very enjoyable EP to listen to, with brilliant musicianship and songwriting on show. It is no surprise to learn that it was written against the backdrop of the pandemic, with the songs reflecting the confusion and strange intensity of the time. These songs could be described as bleak, but they are a product of our unprecedented time, and sad or not, these songs are a fantastic showcase for the skills and talents of this exciting band.
Valetta will launch Your Future in an Email at Gullivers, Manchester on the 23rd of February.