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Private Island unravel anecdotal excellence in their new Valleyheart EP

"Valleyheart EP"

Release date: 08 July 2022
08 July 2022, 15:15 Written by Alexander Williams
Exploring adrenalised tales of adolescence in their Valleyheart EP, Private Island’s latest release offers a rapturous insight into the band’s unique chronicles.

Private Island have always done a fantastic job at bringing their playful spirit and truly euphoric energy to life, but their new Valleyheart EP reminds us that at their core, they are genuine storytellers. Bursting back into the alternative rock scene, the South Californian trio continue to transcend barriers and inspire with their whimsical flair. Comprising current front-man Christian Lum, Tommy Nickerson, and Cameron Anderson, their tales of ‘in-jokes’ and fables of times with friends, both good and bad, bring their lyrical ingenuity to life.

Giving us a fantastic sense of their playful spirit, Valleyheart offers a deeper insight into Private Island’s experimentalism than its predecessors, bursting with their idiosyncratic sound that continues to evolve significantly across their repertoire. Their latest EP was self-written, produced and engineered in its entirety in band member Lum’s home studio. Whilst some demos stood the test of time, others offer a more anecdotal approach, as they tucked into sunny midday writing sessions. In some ways, the trio have all become producers in their own time. Their ambition to steer their own musical direction has seen them leaning more heavily into dark electronic sounds, with influential undertones of R&B. This may seem a little loose, but the band confide in their self-confessed “conceptual stage”. Pair that with their boisterous percussion, hazy vocal energy and mischievous melodies, and you’ve got an EP that is honestly pretty ethereal.

Offering seven tunes across the record, focus track “Natural” was written back in 2017 during a trip to California. They confess, “After many renditions, the song was ultimately written about dead weight and the relief felt once shed." The tune builds exponentially, before blasting into euphonious synthesisers and dream-descendant drumbeats that perfectly encapsulate their tales. Furthering their catharsis, they explore the multi-directional tribulations of life, with tunes “Your Call” and “Trippin” … and yes, there’s a story behind these tracks too. In fact, every song featured on Valleyheart brings a unique chronicle to life. You find that their energy and pace fluctuate in sync, proving that in many ways, Valleyheart metaphorically encapsulates the highs and lows of adolescence. “Trippin” describes the story of a rather carefree roommate, closely followed by “Your Call” which navigates the inevitable feelings of helplessness when losing a job. Private Island’s experimentalism really has paid off, offering a rather abstract yet completely unapologetic insight into themselves.

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