socal sounds: valley palace

Behind the dream-pop project Valley Palace is 26 year-old Nathan Taylor from Fresno, California. Self-proclaiming his sound as hopeless-romantic-meets-eighties-movies, Valley Palace is a cocktail of those ingredients plus his ambitious vision, like the Powerpuff Girls’ Chemical X. Inspired by bands like DIIV and Beach Fossils, Valley Palace is to release a new single, “Tapes,” from his anticipated EP ahead of his three singles on Spotify.

Valley Palace offers three ethereal tracks that are both gloomy and dreamy in the same manner as a post-storm pink sky. The shoegaze-y melodies are reminiscent of bands like Day Wave and Launder, but his deep, airy vocals are what punch through the production unexpectedly. Taylor is able to effortlessly capture that aforementioned 80’s sound, with his inspiration hailing from his inventory of coming-of-age films, like Pretty in Pink and Perks of Being a Wallflower.

“When I see something pretty romantic, it puts an emotion or feeling on me and then I translate that emotion through the music. But when it comes time to write vocals… I try to stay away from the lovey-dovey writing,” said Taylor. “It’s better for me to write about myself.”

Before he was Valley Palace, Taylor played guitar (and a little bit of everything) in The River Wilde, a Fresno-based band formed in 2014, with friends Cole Elliot on vocals and Marcos Flores on drums. The River Wilde has played over 50 shows since its genesis, branching out to venues like the Silverlake Lounge in Los Angeles and The Honey Hive in Portland. With the members working on other projects while quarantine keeps everyone at home, Taylor is able to focus on his own songwriting in his own makeshift bedroom studio.

Valley Palace’s upcoming EP, whose title remains anonymous, is a result of the natural themes that arise in each of its songs. “You know how most people have those day-in-the-life videos? The songs are like an EP of me,” said Taylor. “I hadn’t fully written the songs yet but I realized, yeah, this is you in one day.”

Listen to Valley Palace here:

Photo by Lalo Bersa

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