In the Valley Below: “The Belt”

Lindsay Lillig

Newborn band In the Valley Below possesses unparalleled potential and encompasses an amalgamation of sounds and styles. Think about a combination of Little Green Cars, MS MR, Depeche Mode, Fleetwood Mac, and Phoenix, and you’ll have a pretty thorough idea of the music behind this group’s Boho-noir façade. The band’s debut album “The Belt” was released earlier this fall succeeding its EP “Man Girl.” Vocalist Angela Gail and musician Jeffrey Jacob lure in listeners with metaphysical melodies and hypnotize them with a heartbeat under each harmony.


This is the first single from the album. It opens with a tranquil guitar riff, soon accompanied by Gail’s eerie, soft alto voice. She sings “I’ve been working on my knees baby it’s alright. Everybody got disease maybe it’s alright.” Jacob joins in with his hypnotic baritone register and sings “You can steal from me baby that’s just fine. You can say it’s free baby that’s alright.” The percussion picks up as the two lead into the chorus. Their harmonies chill and soar as they croon lyrics of “We won’t live too long, so let’s love for one song. The lion won’t lay down when the holy man’s in town.” This song is so addictively crisp.


This track is an ode to those who blaze their own trails. It is an anthem for holding tight to one’s beliefs and dreams. Gail and Jacob sing lyrics of “Don’t follow the man he’s killing for dollar signs. Don’t follow the witch she’ll kill you for time.” The two repeatedly chant “Neverminders, neverminders, neverminders coming for your crown” in the harmony they execute so well.


This track is rich with instrumentation reminiscent of Depeche Mode. Gail and Jacob harmonize from the beginning. The song alludes to the two bandmates being in love with each other. They profess lyrics like “Raven hair, aspen eyes, flicker fire. I wish I found you sooner, I could’ve loved you longer.” However, the song ends with a rather unrequited tone as the two thrice repeat “Do you know I’ll lay with you until I go?” The following track “Dove Season” continues with a similar pattern.

“Searching For a Devil”

The opening music of this track sounds as though it were meant for Imagine Dragon’s song “Radioactive.” The aggressive clanging of a tambourine paired with a bass line evocative of water incessantly dripping from a faucet both compliments and contrasts Gail’s smooth yet stagnant phrases. She sings lyrics like “I wear the wings of the bird now, I drag them on the floor” and “I’ll take the bread of the fairytale and I’ll spill his wine.”

In the Valley Below is as one of a kind as a band can get these days when placed in the indie or alternative genre. Yes, it will remind listeners of several groups and musicians, but it is just as easy to recognize that the band’s sound is original. The band was openly inspired by an array of music and it transformed these many muses into In the Valley Below. “The Belt” is available on Spotify and iTunes, so listen up.