Hula Hula, Valhalia

With a sonic vibe that sounds more appropriate in 1960s America than in 2019 Switzerland, psych/surf rockers Valhalia hail from Geneva and bring forth a blast from the past in a modern context. I can perfectly imagine these boys playing Woodstock in that oh so famous summer of love, and yet Valhalia are wonderfully suited to modern times, their refreshing take on surf rock mixed in with psychedelic influences really make this band stand out in today’s music scene. I’ve been going to gigs for years and I’ve never heard another band sound quite like these guys.

First released in 2017, their debut EP Hula Hula, Valhalia is a brilliant example of nostalgia done properly. Far too many bands look to the past and completely mess it up, yet these unlikely chaps completely get it right. The pure musical skill displayed on this record is astonishing. The guitarist in particular has written his parts brilliantly to accompany the vocalists soaring highs. His playing is just brilliant. Displaying a technical knowledge while still keeping it tasteful. There are plenty of good guitarists out there, but this guy is clearly a master of his craft.

The rhythm section is also well put together, doing exactly what any rhythm section should be doing in this context, supporting the rest of the band. Sure you have a frankly blindingly good guitarist and epically powerful vocals but without those subtle bass notes and without that gentle drum beat they would be nothing. Any band is only as good as it’s foundation. Consistency, drive, energy. All these things this rhythm section provide and I encourage any of my readers who want to start playing bass or drums to look at these guys as they are an excellent example of a rock n roll rhythm team.

Lastly we come to the vocals, which should not be underestimated. Hauntingly beautiful the melodies hear really bring out some emotion. You can really hear the rawness in his voice, which in an age of auto tune and overproduction is something to be applauded. All in all the parts come together flawlessly. Seriously, keep an eye on these guys, their sound is pure nostalgic euphoria. The place to start with Valhalia is the first track on this stand out EP Under Your Spell. It has all their strengths on display and cuts absolutely no corners. Hugs Time is another brilliant tune. Then again all these songs are stellar. Anyway that’s all from me, check out their Facebook and Spotify, you won’t be disappointed.

Peace, Love and Cowbells,

Oscar

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