FOUR QUESTIONS with Vance Valenzuela from VALE OF PNATH

By J. Donovan Malley

February 26, 2020
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Interview and Photos by Guest Contributer J. Donovan Malley

1. What’s something that you’re really getting into right now?

More than ever before, I’m probably actually just really into creating music and art right now. I'm in another band now called Ritual Aesthetic. It’s much more like an industrial metal approach to music.  It’s been cool to write music for a project other than Vale of Pnath.  Vale’s songs are very complex sometimes. Without having to consider that complexity, not having to think about Vale, I found it was really easy to be creative.  It’s really good for me as a musician to do something different and try new creative directions.  That, and not having to play super-fast all the time. I’ve really only been part of Ritual Aesthetic for around 2 years. Recently I moved in with the vocalist from Ritual, Sean Ragan.  He and I have basically written a whole album.  Actually, I just finished my stuff for that album right before this tour. The project is absolutely something that I'll be very proud of and I feel that it shows a different side of me and my creativity.

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2. What’s pissing you off lately or getting under your skin?.

Social Media can really irritate me right now. I’m trying to take a step back from it for now.  There’s just so much negativity on these sites. Sometimes it seems like there are all these platforms, not so much Instagram, but really Facebook, that aren’t supporting anything in a positive way. Its just people being negative. I recognize that I need to go on there for the band and for projects I do. But I just try and not be on there so much anymore; to make a conscious effort not to be on social media so much. I feel like it used to actually bother me a lot, but I’m doing something about it.

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3. Looking down the road, is there something that you’re excited about?

I’m looking forward to writing the full-length follow up to the Accursed EP by Vale of Pnath. We really liked the way that release came out and I’m excited to see where we go as musicians. My roommate, Sean, from Ritual Aesthetic, did all the electronic parts on the Accursed album.  For example, he was the one that wrote the intro ("Shadow and Agony"). He helped add a different quality to that release. He’s going to be working with us again for the full length.  I think it helps set us apart and I’m looking forward to the process and results.

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4. Looking to the past, do you have any regrets?

Well, I’ve made my share of mistakes along the way, but the key is that I always try to look at things as a learning experience. I’ve made a few mistakes along the way when it comes to Vale of Pnath, but I’ve tried to learn from that.  Your mistakes can shape you in positive ways, you just need to be open to that.