Valleys – Sometimes Water Kills People (Semprini Records)

Although Valleys are a folk group, they’re not folk in the traditional sense of the word. Yes, they have acoustic guitars and folk-style vocals, but they also explore other tangents on their mysteriously titled debut, Sometimes Water Kills People. These tangents – Another Green World-styled ambient, post-rock, psychedelia and lo-fi – are the most interesting thing about the band. Their songs tend to start out the same way, with a simple acoustic guitar part coupled with hushed and rather nondescript male/female harmonies. However, at about the halfway point, they take off and go someplace different and exciting. The best of these musical excursions are the machine-gun drums dropped into the haunted, and surprisingly sexual “Tan Lines”, and the Spacemen 3-esque guitars at the end of “The Heavy Dreamer”. As exciting as these moments are, they lose their luster over time as the same tricks get used too often in the album’s sluggish second half. There’s some promise here, but varied song structures and better recording quality would help deliver on it.


1. Killer Legs


3. Tan Lines

4. The Heavy Dreamer

5. Slow Path

6. CR68C

7. Silent Woods

8. Le Sujet Est Délicat

9.  The Breakers