My Music DNA: Jack Valero Of The RPM’s

The RPMs emerged from the Brighton music scene that has also birthed contemporaries Black Honey, Yonaka and Fickle Friends. The band was formed in Dorset by childhood friends Jack Valero (lead vocals, guitar) and Callum James, (drums and backing vocals). Following a move to Brighton they were joined by Miguel Cosme on bass and gained early momentum in 2016 for their debut EP, ‘Digital Disobedience, followed by their second EP in 2017, ‘Agents of Change’ released via Xtra Mile Recordings. Inspired by the support of singles ‘Oh My God’ and ‘Things I Forgot To Do’,  

The RPMs then expanded to a five piece, adding in Chris Bowden on keyboards and Ollie Summers on lead guitar to create a larger live sound and carve out a more ambitious sonic direction, or as they put it “We’ve skipped off down the rabbit hole more and more lately with our sound evolving into tunes that you can dance to, drink to and have mind-expanding existential conversations long into the night to, not really… unless you really want to, we won’t judge” 

Tonight (July 5), the band play Cardiff’s Moon Club headlining a This Feeling showcase night with support from New York Tourists, Bandicoot, and Violet Walk. The band play Bristol’s Mothers Ruin on July 6 featuring support from New York Tourists, Chay Snowdon and Namsake 

Jack Valero recently revealed the bands music DNA to Andy Howells. 

The first song that made an impact on you?  

Baba O’Riley – I heard it when I was 14 in my parent’s kitchen and it was so huge and angelic. Sounds stupid, but honestly made me feel like I was soaring and listened to it on repeat for ages. It’s also what I listen to when I’m flying to help me with take-off and landing ‘cos I’m not a great flyer. 

The first single /download you bought?  

Well the first ever single I bought was a 45 single that I got in a record shop in Ashville West Virginia of The Rolling Stones ‘Satisfaction’ and the B side was ‘I’m Free’ and it had that very special old vinyl smell. Also loved listening to I’m Free cos there’s actually a fair few mistakes in it and yet still sounds great because it’s so simple and authentic.  

The first album you owned? 

The first album I ever bought I think was probably Dookie by Green Day as I went through my anxty teenage punk faze like a lot of kids ha-ha. I remember getting the vinyl for that too and looking at the crazy artwork loads.  

Your constant “go to” track?  

New Theory by Washed Out – because I’m always so impressed by people achieving so much with minimalist approaches. This song has just two sections and they all only place twice through the song and it’s still so beautiful and emotional. The production is top notch on it too and like to listen in to see some of the techniques they’ve used.  

Your constant “go to” album? 

Currently it’s Confidence Man with their debut album Confident Music For Confident People, it’s just phenomenal! Again, the level of production on it is huge but they never over use it. And the fat beats and bass lines just always get you moving.  

Your latest music discovery?  

Night Cars – They’re a pop/synth/arty band and I discovered them on YouTube thinking they were pretty big judging from the quality of their songs and videos but they’re just sort of starting out. But I can’t see them staying like that for long if they keep making material as good as they have now. The singers voice is incredibly rich and they have wall to wall hooks with excellent production.  

Your own track that best defines you as an artist? 

That’s a hard one as your songs always represent different parts of you and what you are. But if I had to choose then I’d say Gotta Let Go, which isn’t released yet but has had some plays on radio from the BBC intro session we did and we always finish our set with it. Because it’s such a smash you over the head dance your nut off song and that’s what we’re all about. Bringing the energy and the dancey beats to turn every gig into a dance party. And it really shows the great production techniques of our producer Gethin too, he took this song and made it 10 feet tall. I know I keep banging on about the production but for a songwriter it’s just so interesting! 🙂  

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