As we head into our annual August break, it’s nice to wrap things up with a Finnish band who haven’t yet had much exposure. Speechless Valley are true indie spirits who are building their base through a lot of hard work, as well love for what they do. Receiving a debut album out of the blue from such a new band reminded me a little of The Stillwalkers too, the Finnish band that had the dubious honour of being awarded our Album of the Year in 2015.
Anyway Speechless Valley are a 4-piece DIY indie rock band from Vaasa, on the west coast of Finland, which is great because I don’t think we’ve featured any artists from there before. They suggest that It’s difficult to “pinpoint a specific influencer or a genre” that fits their music, but I’d beg to differ, given to me their music sounds pretty heavily influenced by the likes of The Smiths and The Cure - just listen to opening track ‘Bona Fide’ on their album ‘As the Water arose Above our Feet” and you’ll see what I mean.
To get a full album out is a pretty significant achievement for the young band, and it’s definitely a DIY effort. There’s fair few flaws, but I’d prefer to focus on the positives, which are Speechless Valley’s ear for a good melody, jangly reverb drenched guitars and thoughtful lyrics, even if they are all a little on the sad side and often unintelligible too, probably a result of the DIY recording and production.
However their first single ‘Hit It’ is a great example of their promise, a well constructed track which feels really natural in its construction, with relentless guitars straight from 80/90’s indie heaven and a haunting tune in the chorus. Writing about the track the band explain “It's essentially a song about a teenage crush, weed and the first steps in a blossoming affair”. It certainly has a euphoric feel.
Other tracks on the album are less euphoric and almost downtrodden – with track titles such as ‘Demise’, ‘Downfall’ and “As the Water Rose Above Our Feet’ you probably get the idea – ‘Demise’ charts the arrival of the apocalypse and how a couple “spend their last moments in a burning house trying to grasp the fact that they're about to die.”. I sometimes have a similar nightmare, except in mine the most recent ‘Of Monsters and Men’ album is being boomed from the skies and I don’t have enough petroleum to throw on the flames.
It may have some imperfections, but I have a lot of time for “As the Water Rose Above Our Feet” as an album, and Speechless Valley as a band are definitely ‘one to look out for”, especially if they continue to work on refining their sound and get a little bit of production resources behind them - they certainly have the tunes. There’s plenty of time, it’s not as if the apocalypse is really on it’s way. Unless it’s here already?
Find them on Facebook.