Ed Vallance

Ed Vallance

 New York City, New York, USA
BandRockSinger/Songwriter

a rare talent in the current indie-folk-rock scene delivering a combination of powerful sounds as a base for a rare memorable voice.

Biography

There’s an ethereal quality to Ed Vallance’s music - a wide-open sonic landscape that feels like psychedelia shot through Cinescope. This is the sound of a man who, in the service of his music, has left the familiar terrain of his native London for the unfamiliar environments of Los Angeles, and now Brooklyn. But what distinguishes Vallance is his fiercely original songwriting. On his new EP The Summer Fire, he has taken his music to a new level; a high water mark in what has already been an acclaimed career, marked by recognition from the BBC, MTV2, VH1, and KCRW.

From the opening notes of “Black And White Light” The Summer Fire EP envelops the listener in lush synth swells and lilting electric guitars, a byproduct of Vallance’s new surroundings and the simpatico production of Mark Ephraim (New Pornographers, Joan As Policewoman, Au Revoir Simone). Ephraim has retained the beauty of Vallance’s previous work, while extracting a darker depth, making The Summer Fire EP far more than a simple a rock record.

Working with Mark Ephraim felt less like an everyday decision and more like serendipity. As Ed explains, “I’ve worked with a lot of producers, but there was an immediate musical chemistry with him and we hit itf off from the word go. We went up to Montauk one weekend inweekend in August and just got completely engrossed in the demos. Mark instinctively knew what I was going for. It felt like the hand of fate or something.” Musically speaking, on The Summer Fire, Mark has helpedad Ed retain the melodicism that has been his hallmark from the beginning, while creating a new sense of drama and tension.

Ed Vallance has been captivating audiences since the release of his debut EP, Sleepwalk (2006), and his US album debut, The Modern Life (2008). The album’s hit single, “Deep End,” won Vallance airplay on BBC Radio, video play on VH-1 and MTV2, and play on KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic. Various tastemakers have also given Vallance laudatory notices, with the BBC’s Gary Crowley’s comment, “Ed Vallance is a truly unique new talent,” being typical.

The Modern Life was released on the cusp of Ed’s move from London to Los Angeles, a move that began a drastic shift in perspective. As Vallance explains, “I upped and left London and everything changed very quickly. Everything shifted up a gear and the songs came in very quick succession. There’s always something positive about taking yourself out of your comfort zone. I hit the ground running and I feel like it brought a new focus to the music.”

“A lot of my friends in London were American, and I was always into American alternative pop and rock bands, as well as UK music. So it felt like a pretty natural progression to move here. Plus my old friend Simon – the guitar player in the band - was moving to the US too. We definitely grew up listening to a lot of British bands: I definitely listened to a lot of British bands growing up: The Stone Roses, Traffic, Ultravox, Spacemen 3, Slowdive, Shop Assistants, all that stuff. But we wereI was just as into Marvin Gaye, Galaxie 500, Smog andor Buffalo Springfield. We wereI was also pretty engrossed in the Garage and Techno scene in London in the 90’s. So I was exposed to a lot of things. It’s hard to say what influenced me most, really.”

The guitars that begin “Famous Last Words” are a reminder of Vallance’s shoegaze influence, but the song takes on a lush beauty that allows a full spotlight to shine on his lyrics, melancholy and exquisite. Like much of the music on The Summer Fire EP, you can pick up snatches of lines that resonate deeply, or you can just let the music wash over you, lilting bouyant and dreamlike. “Cowboys And Indians” speaks to the classic myth of the American frontier, and the tautness of the music speaks to sagas both personal and universal. “Bookish” retains an element of jaunty, ironic pop, but is grounded in a grappling of love and death and an adult perspective that gives the song a deeper resonance.

Vallance recorded The Summer Fire EP in Brooklyn, where he has been living for the past year. He enthuses, “I love this city – I just get off on the pure energy of it. I’ve had to work three times as hard just to keep up. It’s certainly raised my game.” With touring planned for the summer, and an album release in the Ffall, Ed is now happily settled in New York, and eager to find a new and broader audience for his music. He concludes, “I’ve traveled halfway around the world for this music. It’s exciting to up and leave and to follow your instinct. My hope is that some of that excitement has rubbed off on the record.".

Discography

2008 The Modern Life
2010 The Summer Fire EP