Valentine & The Regard
Misery Can Be Your Best Friend
Valentine & The Regard = The Cure + The Smiths + DIIV
With echoing and dreamy guitar riffs accompanied by melancholy vocals, Valentine & The Regard deliver their delightfully dreary Misery Can Be Your Best Friend. This collection of tracks has a terrific early goth/new wave sound that is all things smooth and moody with that DIY, not-always-clean style that gives it an authentic charm in both its execution and production. Tracks like the acoustic “Percocet” allow you to hear the prepping of the guitar and countdown of the song before the quiet guitar plucking and beat-down lyrics begin. The other acoustic track, “Take My Place,” follows the same style with quiet instrumentals and moody lyrics that are raw in their delivery. The acoustic tracks shine is their ability to capture the emotion of the lyrics and pick up on the shakiness on the vocal delivery that allow it to feel more real.
Misery Can Be Your Best Friend shines is in its full instrumental songs. The mix of dreamy guitars, spacey synths and light percussion allows the band to fully express that early goth style. The track “My Worst Fear” has a very similar build to The Cure’s “Pictures of You” and has a beautiful progression throughout, though the vocals can be a bit too loud at points. Last but not least is the opening track “Love is Blind,” which continues the moody atmosphere created by the album but has a beach rock style too, much like the work of DIIV. Overall, this album captures a very particular style and mood that I feel can be difficult to execute authentically, but Valentine & The Regard have created a raw sound behind which you can feel the emotion. I would recommend checking out their SoundCloud to anyone who just enjoys a good moody alternative. –Connor Brady