Interviews: Vallory Falls

On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the Pop Punk band Vallory Falls from the USA. Check out this band and follow them on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

1. Where did you get the idea for the band name Vallory Falls? Was it carefully planned or spontaneous?

Tristan Gillis (Vocals & Rhythm Guitar): Very intentional! It was always meant to evoke a sort of duality. "Vallory" is unlike the name "Valerie"... it's different, like the band. Vallory Falls as a place doesn't exist, but if it did, I think it would be something reflecting the music we write… like some divine, unadulterated place, something that can never be attained, but there is a constant struggle to obtain it. Or, if it's a person: the symbol of all that is beautiful, unattainable, and their fall from grace.

2. Did you know each other before the band was formed?

Tristan: I met Meghan through my last band almost 5 years ago… we started dating, but did our own projects for years until she was in a place that we asked her to join! The first year the band came together in 2021, we had a lineup change when I moved to Vermont from Massachusetts and met Riley at a benefit concert in South Burlington after talking on Craigslist. We did nothing for a year, Riley switched from Bass to Drums, and then Dan answered our own CL ad in like 10 minutes.

Meghan Burke (Lead Guitar): Tristan is my partner and I met the rest of the band through him. We’ve hung out and gone on trips together before I was invited to join the band after their last guitarist left.

Riley Burridge (Drums): I actually responded to a Craigslist ad for a band looking for a bassist. That’s how I met Tristan. And then Dan responded to a Craigslist ad when I switched over to drums, and we were looking for a new bassist.

Dan Lecours (Bass): I didn’t know any of these people until they posted for a bassist wanted in a Craigslist ad in May 2022. 48 hours later we jammed and have been with VF ever since!

3. Each band member's favourite band?

Tristan: My longest-loved band is without a doubt blink-182, but in my 20's I've found so much cool music. I love emo, punk, hardcore, indie pop; bands like Joyce Manor, The Wonder Years, and Miniature Tigers.

Meghan: Frank Turner, hands down. One of the most inspiring and versatile songwriters in the punk scene.

Riley: My favorite band is between Badflower, Driveways, and Big Thief

Dan: Blink 182

4. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

Tristan: A lot of what inspires me to write is in the past… heartbreak, longing, regrets. Sometimes I write happy songs. I think either way, it's only inspiring to me if it creates such a rise of emotion that I can't express it any other way. Writing for me is the most extreme of my feelings laid bare.

Meghan: As a guitarist, the Gaslight Anthem is my biggest influence. I love how their guitars embellish the melodies of the songs and create a feeling of nostalgia. Also inspired by a lot of 90s punk and pop punk like Green Day, Blink 182, and Social Distortion.

Dan: I don’t really write full VF songs but I will make up my own bass lines to many of the songs. I have influences from pop punk, ska, and rock genres such as Bayside, blink, TBS, Less Than Jake, Mustard Plug, and RHCP.

5. Where was your last gig?

Tristan: Despacito in Burlington, VT. It's a cool vegan place that recently is fucking killing it with the diversity of bands playing there.

Meghan: Despacito in Burlington, which is quickly becoming the hub of the live DIY music scene.

6. Where would you like to play?

Tristan: The Sinclair in Allston, MA would be insane.

Meghan: It would be so cool to tour out west. We’ve played around with the idea of a national/state parks tour on the east coast and I think the west coast parks are so epic!

Riley: I would want to play The Middle East in Cambridge, MA.

Dan: Token Lounge in Westland, MI!

7. Who’s an artist would you like to feature with?

Tristan: Opening for Joyce Manor would actually be a dream come true, or Prince Daddy and the Hyena.

Meghan: There are way too many good ones to choose.

Riley: I’d love to play with Mom Jeans

Dan: Weezer

8. Have any of you ever suffered from stage fright? Any tips for beginners on how to beat that?

Tristan: Playing fast and hard makes it a lot easier. There are a lot of times where I can't breathe because I'm so anxious, or maybe I freak out because of a couple seconds of dead air after a song. But most of the time it's cool and I can just shake it off and focus on the music.

Meghan: Yes, it’s kind of a feeling of dread and my heart racing, my main concern is making a big mistake and disappointing my bandmates. Recently I have discovered propranolol helps a lot and is a better choice than alcohol.

Riley: I used to have stage fright but I’ve turned any anxiety into the fun of playing. It helps to wear fun sunglasses too.

Dan: I have stage fright at times but I think confidence on stage has grown through overall confidence in myself through band and personal practices.

9. What bands have inspired you the most?

Tristan: I get a lot of inspiration from The Wonder Years when I'm writing. I've always wanted to write songs like Joyce Manor; they just write the catchiest shit, sometimes about nothing, but it's harder than you'd think. A lot of the time the kind of metaphors and deeper meaning I want to get out of the music has me writing more like The Wonder Years, or maybe Modern Baseball to an extent. Musically, I take a lot of inspiration from bands like Prince Daddy and the Hyena, Blink-182, Born Without Bones, Origami Angel, Fredo Disco.

Riley: For drumming at least, my inspiration comes from Jon Fishman (Phish), Travis Barker (Blink 182), Stewart Copeland (The Police), and Taylor Hawkins (Foo Fighters).

10. What's the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

Tristan: An encore 

11. How would you describe your fans?

Tristan: A rowdy bunch of punks, some of my best friends.

Meghan: Fun, energetic, kind, friends

Riley: Friends who we can rely on

12. Anything else you’d like to add?

Tristan: Thanks so much for interviewing us! We greatly appreciate it.

Meghan: Birds aren’t real #birdtruther

Riley: There is no such thing as the moon #moontruther

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