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    Val Halla
Genre: Alternative
Region: Canada

   Description     Biography     Influences   

Three-piece original rock group Val Halla, came together only 6 months ago to play their first show. Bringing together Neil Towers and Tayo Branston, the virtuosic rhythm section of the well known Vancouver group FIVE ALARM FUNK, and throwing them behind Saskatchewan-raised singer/songwriter Valerie McLeod, the band was an instant hit.

Just a few months later the band had a 27-date cross-canada tour booked, released their debut Self-titled album to a packed house, and a solid line of merchandise flying off the counter.

Unfortunately, the band suffered a big set back when a week into their tour, the owner of the tour bus (who happened to play in the band accompanying Val Halla on tour), declared he and his band had gone bankrupt and would be turning the bus around and heading back to Vancouver. The tour was being called a week in, and Val Halla would end up stranded in Winnipeg!

Not wanting to admitt defeat, Val Halla checked into the only hotel in downtown Winnipeg with a vacancy that night, and tried to regroup. Efforts to secure a rental vehicle proved impossible. A call was made to Valerie's father, who lived 6 hours away in Regina, Saskatchewan.
Val Halla would be rescued by Mr. McLeod and taken back to Regina to create a new plan of attack. The band was able to use Valerie's Grandfather's station wagon, and though most of the dates in Eastern Canada were now lost, Val Halla picked the tour up again playing shows in Saskatchewan and Manitoba until the tour dates caught up with them and they played the shows all the way back to Vancouver.

The tour ended up being a 17-date Western Canada stint, but proved the determination and strength of the band, not only to the band themselves, but to all who had observed their story.

What is next on the agenda for Val Halla? Pre-production is in the works for Val Halla's first music video, which is tentatively scheduled to be released early next year. Planning is also underway for a trip to Eastern Canada, to get the band to the cities unluckily missed out on last time out on the road.

Valerie will be going to Nashville for two weeks in the new year, to focus on songwriting and learn from and meet with as many expierenced players and writers as she can.

Expect to hear about this band from the mouth of a friend sometime in the near future. Or simply get into them now, and pass on the word!


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Val Halla
2007

Step 1 - Personal Info
No. Title Duration Price Download
1.  Bad Blood 7:44 $0.89
2.  The Mark 3:25 $0.89
3.  Strange 3:29 $0.89
4.  Interlude Nothing Left .. 1:51 $0.89
5.  Dirty in the End 5:10 $0.89
6.  Chill 3:30 $0.89
7.  Can't Sleep 3:51 $0.89
8.  Calm Before the Storm 4:27 $0.89
9.  Break You Down 4:10 $0.89
10.  Born to Lose 2:33 $0.89
11.  Till the Morning 3:57 $0.89

Val Halla
Genre: Alternative
Release Date: 09/13/2007
11 Songs

  $12.97  (Physical CD)

  $9.79 (Download CD)
earBuzz Review:
Guitarist, Valerie McLeod, leads the band Val Halla with an eclectic metal mix that fuses more progressive tonal support ala Rush with lyrics that land between poetry and pros. Her vocal and lyrical approach is a dichotomy as the words reflect darkness, submission, evil, death, despair, with a parental advisory sticker for the occasional word - yet the tone of her voice, strong and clear, has a gentle quality that delivers the lines with conviction but without the anger/evil that the words would assume. The recording and band are first rate - especially the rhythm section. The entire self-titled record sounds as if it were recorded live and has that kind of performance gelled vibe to it. The record opens with "Dirty in the End" - and we immediately hear McLeod's guitar arpeggiated interesting rock work. We are reminded a bit of the Runaways. The lyrics, again, are dark and in this tune mysterious - Val sings 'it won't come off it will never come clean' - and we're left wondering if she's singing about a real or metaphorical diabolical tattoo. The following tune, "The Mark", opens with chugging mid range guitar - the higher strings are panned more right, while other strings fill center left providing and interesting and tight spatial guitar riff - cool. The CD continues with epic tunes similar to a Metallica approach until we get to track 9, "Strange". (actually, there's a brief instrumental 'Interlude' just before). "Strange" has the most commercial potential if that's important to anyone. It has an 80's punk pop groove that is infectious - and the vocal is one of the best delivered on the record - especially when the doubling hits at the chorus. .leaving us with 'you people are so strange'. Yes we are. All tolled, this is a satisfying 11-tune rock collection and certainly one of the finer female fronted bands we've heard. McLeod's compositions are musically rich, energetic, and convincingly dark as is her guitar wielding. We look forward to more.