Valley: "Last Birthday" Music Video, Their Creative Process, and Three-Rrack EP, 'The After Party'

Ezzah Rafique | February 19, 2022
Photo creds: Dylan Mitro

Q: Hi, how are you guys? We'd love for you guys to introduce yourselves and who you guys are and tell us a little bit about yourself.

All

We are Valley. I'm Karah. I play drums in the band and sing a little bit.

I'm Rob, I sing and play guitar and valley. I'm 26 years old. I don't like growing up. Peter Pan's my spirit animal.

I'm Mickey and I play guitar and keys and digital production and stuff. I am also 26, unfortunately.

I'm Alex. I don't identify with a certain age. And I play bass in the band.


Q: For those who haven't listened to your music, what would the perfect setting be to listen to it?

Alex

Driving.


Rob

Definitely driving.


Alex

Yeah, anything like moving, I think we're commuting band or I call ourselves like commuters man. I feel like we're really good at like 7pm, 8pm coming back from a ski trip suns going down. That's a Valley moment. Maybe the subway, you know, just a day off is a Valley moment. But we also have a lot of sad music. So I guess if you like lose your job or some Valley’s there for you, too. So I would just say all-purpose, overthinking, or commuting and just going about your day where we're good for you.


Mickey

Certain tracks are really good to fall asleep to or just like lay in bed, eyes closed listening to because there's a lot of ear candy. Emotionally on the songwriting front, it's like very nostalgic, you know, late-night drive kind of vibes. Or like summer, summer evening drive vibes, but then like sonically, there's a lot of stuff that you wouldn't be able to hear in a car. So having headphones in like closing your eyes and paying attention to them is like, cool, a little nerdy, but like really cool, as well.

Q: So definitely something you can listen to throughout your day. Perfect. I want to comment on your most recent release the After Party. So y'all have mentioned that the songs on there: Last birthday, Seven Stories, and Papercut are some of the most important songs in your lives. Is there a backstory to each song regarding their importance?

Rob

Yeah, actually, each one is very specific. So Last Birthday, we wrote originally in 2019, at an air b&b in LA. And it was like the last day of our riding trip and our friend Ash came over was amazing. And we just wrote Last Birthday together and the whole day we were drinking wine and eating cookies. And for the first hour or two just watched compilations of When Harry Met Sally, specifically, the last moment of the movie where there's that like a compilation of the old couples talking about how they met and stuff. So we just kind of like start talking about like being there for people from the beginning, unconditional love and referencing all these kind of like feelings from movies. We ended up writing Last Birthday, which is a favorite song. Paper Cup was like a very eight-minute-long journal entry that just came out one day. That was like one of the only songs I think that came together like came out of the sky. Like you're not even thinking you're just like singing it. And then it just...


Alex

That song was like a therapy session.


Rob

And they're really special. And then Seven Stories was like crazy. So I was like going through a little bit of a breakup this year & Mickey and Alex and Karah got together with our friend Danny and started working on this song. And I was actually away taking time off. I wasn't really working with the band and they just like sent this demo over and it was unbelievable. So I just started working on it. And then we finished it together in like one day like all songs, other than 'Last Birthday'.


Karah

The Last Birthday chorus. So, when we were putting together the Last Birthday song, I was looking through my voice notes, and there was never a clear moment of like how we wrote the chorus, which is weird, like that one sort of did fall out of the sky [and] we just held on to Last Birthday for a long time. But honestly, I remember writing that chorus, and we [were] looking around and being like, so, who wrote the chorus and none of us knew. So it was like just there, it was so weird. And obviously, we wrote the chorus, but it becomes one of those situations where it's like, you get into this, like very much trance state when you're writing sometimes. And I feel like those are really when the best songs come because you're truly not thinking about anything else. But just like carving out the song that we always say just already exists, you just kind of have to find it and take away pieces and stuff like that, but it is there. You have to be ready to take them in because like for instance, Seven Stories. The melody of that chorus Mike wrote in college, but there wasn't an opportunity, and it just wasn't the time for it. And then like all of a sudden, they're writing this kind of new song, and then Mickey was like, Okay, this melody works here. Like, you just never know, when all that stuff is gonna align. That's why I always say, never give up on an idea or like a melody. Because we're the best example that like, even years later, something that you, I don't know, came up with while walking down the street, just blurting into your phone is going to end up on a record.


Alex

So I feel like the songs actually kind of mirror the like the theme of the record like nostalgia and stuff because we did take like a lot from older stuff that we like melodies from college or songs that we'd written seven years ago, and brought those back. So I feel like there's a lot of mirrored nostalgia with this record.

Q: What was the creative process? Like you guys described it, but was there a creative process for the song that wasn't used to like your normal style of writing songs?

Alex

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