Back in the summer of 2008, when times weren’t so economically challenging, Valencia, released their long-awaited sophomore album and major label debut, We All Need A Reason To Believe, easily my record of the year.
However, this is March 2009, and, financially, we’re all pretty much fucked, but who cares? Because those Philly pop-punkers have released an EP, featuring four tracks which didn’t quite make the album cut, aptly named, We All Need A Reason To B-Side!
This short but sweet delight begins with When Words Fail, This Music Speaks, and, arguably, the strongest track on the record. Although, the theme of the song is similar to many other Valencia songs, being parted from a loved-one, this does not get tiresome with the genuine emotion always felt in the vocals and lyrics of vocalist Shane Henderson.
Second up is Working, and with the anthemic gang-vocals throughout, it’s hard not to love this song. This song also embraces Valencia’s positivity, another central theme of We All Need A Reason To Believe, a quality which I am sure everyone can appreciate.
Running Away follows, which I’m sure will be familiar to the hardcore Valencia fan, as the band originally released it to those who had promoted We All Need A Reason To Believe on MySpace, a few months prior. Even though the catchy guitar riffs, mostly upbeat-tempo, and guest vocals from Trevor Leonard of Procession Came Opposite are all great, it was definitely a good call to keep this as a b-side.
The EP closes with A Better Place To Land, which musically, lyrically, and vocally darker sounds than any other Valencia song, along with Shane’s impressive vocal range shown in all its glory.
I really can’t say anything bad about Valencia, they are one of the most consistent and genuine bands out there, and are simply an incredible pop-punk band, no gimmicks needed here, which is definitely what the genre needs right now.
Disappointingly, for overseas fans, this EP is currently only available (for free) to those who buy merch at a live Valencia show. However, it is being streamed on several legal sites, including HERE!