Wonderland.

NEW NOISE: LO VALLENS

Channelling the energy of Uma Thurman’s Kill Bill character, the artist drops her sultry track “The Bride”.

Lo Vallens
Lo Vallens

Songs steeped in pop culture references make for an interesting listen as hidden meanings and movie citations add depth to lyrics and draw fans in. An artist offering a glimmering example of this is Lo Vallens with her Quentin Tarantino-inspired tune “The Bride”. A track that you’d expect to find on the Peaky Blinders soundtrack, the sensual song finds its tone as a hazy layer of production muffles the artist’s old school vocals in a truly immersive manner. And, with the project standing as an ode to Uma Thurman’s Kill Bill character, the twisted lyrics create a “poetic action sequence” which offers a dark undertone to the seemingly warm surface of the track.

“I wanted to try capturing a torment I would want to achieve over my victims as Uma Thurman’s character. Slowly, agonising, with “my” enjoyment and satisfaction. Going line-by-line with poetic methods of torture made for a fun, psychotic and interesting studio session. Had a few moments where it felt necessary to reign in the detail to avoid becoming more graphic than poetic, I really like what came out of it, and feel like it also represents the fight between the good and bad in the mind,” explains the artist when speaking on the inspiration behind her track.

Having found great success with the release of her debut single “Rose Tinted Glasses” earlier this year, “The Bride” stands as the artists secondary and wildly successful attempt to establish herself in the industry. And, with Lo Vallens sat firmly on BBC Radio 1’s radar, it is clear that she is about to rise through the musical ranks straight towards a domination of the 2021 music scene.

Check out our interview with Lo Vallens below…

How has the pandemic been for you musically, has it affected your creativity?
I’ve been in my head a lot. I’m fortunate enough that the chaos I felt was more within myself and my art than an exposure to the global pandemic. I found the best I could do was try to take advantage of the isolation. I took an online photography course, started oil painting. I really sunk into my writing but lost 9 months’ worth of it in a notebook that went missing. That really set me back creatively and put me in a dark space for a bit, but I have no right to complain. Quarantine had its difficulties, of course. There was no overlooking the cloud of negative energy lingering over everyone and I definitely had points where I felt really overwhelmed, but when I put my experience into perspective, I can’t be anything but grateful for how it went.

The pandemic ended up being a lot more productive for me visually rather than musically, I had impulsive bursts of words that I needed to get down, but my frustration in isolation really came out in paint and photography. The missing notebook was a big loss for me. I shouldn’t have let it affect me as much as it did, but it was like a switch went off and I was so upset about losing my music that I just threw myself into images.

When did you first realise your passion for music? 
At around 13 I started using music to regulate how I feel. In the day, in the night. When this started feeling like a necessity, that was when I realised my passion for it. I’d also done a couple of school performances by then, and the adrenaline of being on stage became addictive. It was incomparable to anything I’d felt before, but also easily attainable. Music gave me a freeing sensation that nothing else could.  

Who would you cite as your musical inspirations? 
There’s an infinite list, but I guess I’d condense it to Erykah Badu, Sade and Billie Holiday. Then I also take an enormous amount of inspiration from painters and trying to re-create their pictures in my own words and through the way they make me feel – this I can take from anything I like the look of visually though, JMW Turner, Hieronymous Bosch, Ai WeiWei, and more recently a painter called Agostino Arrivabene. I could go into photographers as well, film directors. Scents. I take inspiration from all my senses, but Erykah’s groove, Sade’s serenity and Billie’s emotion would be my holy trinity. All their lyrics as well.

Congratulations on the release of your new single “The Bride”, can you tell us a bit about how the song came to fruition?
I wanted to try capturing a torment I would want to achieve over my victims as Uma Thurman’s character. Slowly, agonising, with “my” enjoyment and satisfaction. Going line-by-line with poetic methods of torture made for a fun, psychotic and interesting studio session. Had a few moments where it felt necessary to reign in the detail to avoid becoming more graphic than poetic, I really like what came out of it, and feel like it also represents the fight between the good and bad in the mind. Inner conflict is something that people are becoming increasingly conscious of and open about, I write about it a lot, so the ambiguity in the actual storyline of the song leaves room, I think, for people to place the song within themselves. Sometimes we like to absorb our darkness as we feel it, especially creatives, and I think there can be a beauty in it if not taken too far.

Lo Vallens hands covering her face
Lo Vallens hands covering her face

You claim that “The Bride” is based around Uma Thurman’s character in Kill Bill, what led you to use her as your inspiration?
I think I was having a bit of a Tarantino marathon at the time, and often when I find or rewatch films that I really like, that stimulate me creatively, they’re all I think about for a while. I get films stuck in my head just like I do songs, and my interpretation of this one was one I needed to get out. I couldn’t stop thinking about the Japanese restaurant fight scene, and the one with Lucy Liu in the snow. So clean. I wanted my own poetic action sequence.

You also experienced a great response from the likes of BBC Radio 1 with your debut single “Rose Tinted Glasses”, what was that like for you? 
That was incredible. That amount of unexpected response was completely surreal to me, I didn’t expect it at all but am more than grateful to have received such a positive response 

What do you want people to feel when they are listening to your music? Is there a particular message you want them to take away with them?
Absolutely not. I want people to feel and embrace whatever natural response my music gives them. I have no desire to dictate the effect my music has on people. Even if they feel nothing, at least that’s the genuine response to what they’re hearing. I know what I feel but can’t speak for anyone else and wouldn’t have it another way.

What else have you got planned for the rest of the year?
For the rest of the year, I really just want to focus on school, bettering my writing and musical knowledge, and working on finding the relationship between my visual and performance art. I’d also take any performance opportunity I can get. It’s become a craving at this point.

NEW NOISE: LO VALLENS

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