Photo: Becca Hamel / Courtesy of Capitol Records

Valley Set the “Tempo” for Your Next Summer Anthem

The latest single from Toronto-based alt-pop band Valley blends genres, romance, and sports into one addictive, palpitating groove.

Valley know how it feels to be in love: dreamy yet restless, vast yet intimate, goofy yet sincere. On their latest single “Tempo”, the Toronto-based band look at romance from all sides and sounds, creating a summer energizer that anyone in the car for your cross-country road trip can enjoy. There’s “Foreign Fields”-era Kacy Hill in the piano chords, house-ready synth stabs and drums in the chorus, Charli XCX-certified AutoTune in the bridge.

At one point (around 1:29), it sounds like the band sampled the gold firework synths that light up when you score a strike in Wii bowling before the chorus arrives with an actual sports reference: “The way you move is so pro / Like 98, you Michael in Chicago.” What takes the cake though is the finale, a slowed + reverb trap-beat epic with an electric guitar solo that would get a pat on the back from Jim Steinman. It is, in other words, the sound of summer’s open-road heat and freedom, crammed into one song; they never take their foot off the gas.

Of the song’s significance, Valley said, “Life is short and moves quick. Taking a second to really experience things is so important these days. So lyrically, it’s about obsessing over a moment or someone in your life but in the sweetest and most pure of ways: from waking up with them in the morning to going out with them at night and existing together in the mundane …but it meaning the world to you. It’s wishing we could slow down time to experience each moment together more deeply. ‘Tempo’ is all about tension and release sonically.”

Hear this song on the PM Picks Spotify playlist.