Reading five-piece and ones to watch stop to chat ahead of their first headline tour
Having met in 2013 through Reading Rock Academy, a School of Rock-type charity music programme, Valeras are a band who have grown immensely in both sound and experience in their relatively short time together.
'We got put together by chance because none of us knew each other,' lead vocalist and bassist Rose Yagmur explains, 'and we just kind of gelled from that first day so we decided to stay together and now we're here five years on.'
Formerly known as Area 52, the Reading five-piece have had a storming year following the release of their debut EP Knives & Flowers and subsequent singles 'Louder', 'Painkiller' and 'Intentions'.
'We've managed to do some really exciting things this year that we hope to carry on doing. And we've been involved with some great tours with people like The Wombats and Fickle Friends. It's been a good year for us!'
The band's latest single 'Intentions' is a heady mix of audacious guitar riffs, powerful vocals and melodies that latch on without giving way, which Rose believes is down to their overall progression since the EP release.
'We were really excited about releasing Knives & Flowers because we had just changed names. People were very supportive of our new name and our new sound and it was pretty much just like starting all over again. To still have support, we were really lucky I think.'
As the main songwriters in the band, Rose and George Parnell (lead guitar) aren't inspired by solely one genre, which certainly shows in elements of Valeras's music, whether it be a Latin-influenced guitar line or vocals with a more typically pop structure.
'As well as getting older, I think we've just brought a new sound to it all.' Rose continues. 'I think deep down there's still some connections to our early music, the roots are still the same. But we definitely have new influences. We're just more experienced in terms of what we know how to do now and that's what we aim to do more of.'
The band's upcoming tour will temporarily take them out of the studio and right across the UK and Ireland, to places they've never been including Edinburgh and Glasgow.
'Being in a studio and being on stage is like having two completely different personalities and you approach things differently.' Rose notes. 'I think we love doing both because when you're in the studio you get to create and be decisive about something. But when you're on stage, everything is natural and everything just comes as it comes. I think the five of us probably somewhat agree. It's really nice to share the music with everyone and you definitely get to do that when you're on stage rather than when you're in a studio.'
Beyond the tour, Valeras certainly have exciting plans for 2019 which will no doubt elevate them further in the UK music scene.
'We've definitely been working on some stuff. I don't know about an album as such, right now we're just focussing on taking it as it comes. I think that's the best way to enjoy it and make the most of it.'
Valeras, Broadcast, Glasgow, Sat 23 Feb; Sneaky Pete's, Edinburgh, Sun 24 Feb.