They say music becomes the soundtrack to your life; I dance every day.
Hypnotic bass lines pulsate with power. A light, smoky keyboard subtly pushes forth muted chords. Electric drums propel an entrancing beat. Connecting these parts is a voice, rejoicing in a celebration of the self. This is Val Fleury’s moment. Her words echo, her naturally warm timbres fusing with cold electronic automation – yet she is still distinctly human. Her voice acquires a hushed rasp at the end of sentences; she colors her words with nuance, a painter in the aural space with superhuman determination. This is only the introduction – just the beginning of the madness.
there’s a fire inside of me
this thing is out of control
live wire burning on
why can’t you see the smoke?
it’s glowing red, red red
it’s burning brown and gold
don’t forget to listen; it’s coming in the distance
again, hear the sirens
Listen: “Rain Dancing” – Val Fleury
Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering “Rain Dancing,” the ESCQ-produced debut single and music video from multifaceted DJ/producer Val Fleury. The Liberian-born, Los Angeles-based artist has chosen to introduce herself with an empowering dance/soul cocktail. Strong, eclectic dance beats surge with energy as Fleury immerses herself in a spirited message of positivity.
“The struggle can be so real sometimes. We’ve all been there!” says Fleury. “I’d hope that this song could bring about good spirits and a good time.” Fleury’s message could not be clearer. She sings from a place of strength, with intense internal feeling that’s waiting to be unleashed. Trailblazing a new path that is not pop, nor EDM, but somewhere in-between, “Rain Dancing” continually flies to new heights in the artist’s attempt to lift not only herself, but also those around her.
SO, SO, SOS
Floating up like dragon’s breath
We feel the pressure
Heavy like ashes
SO, SO, SOS
Let it go in the dark, darkness
Signal the storm to bring in the rain
We move our bodies in circles
We keep dancing and dancing on
But the flame only grows
We call to the clouds again and again
Oh, rain dancing
Fleury’s frenzied exclamation “rain dancing!” introduces a house-like drop: The chorus is as much a release of tension as it is a moment to completely let go of everything. “I was looking to create a champion sound,” explains the artist, “so I wrote “Rain Dancing” as a fun soundtrack for finding relief to issues that may rage internally or around you.”
Directed by Eric Nelson, the “Rain Dancing” music video highlights Fleury’s message of uninhibited self-love. Choreographed by and featuring PENNYWILD and Andrew Barret Cox, the black and white video emphasizes Fleury and the dancers’ natural features. Their accentuated movements are large and calculated, their arms and legs spread wide as they encircle Fleury and envelop themselves. For Fleury, the body is a ” vessel for positive change and creativity.” The video’s focus on body movement, with PENNYWILD and Barret Cox performing their own individual rain dance and a dance in unison, lends weight to the power of individuality and the power of togetherness.
This is Val Fleury’s moment. With its radiant glow and hybrid influence, “Rain Dancing” is so much more than an introductory song: It’s a pure and unadulterated song of happiness. Val Fleury reaches out to her audience, coaxing us to find our individual rain dance and let ourselves go. Experience “Rain Dancing,” the lead single off Fleury’s forthcoming Konnect EP, via our exclusive stream, and learn more about Val Fleury and her musical debut in our exclusive interview below!
Watch: “Rain Dancing” – Val Fleury
MEET VAL FLEURYAtwood Magazine: What was your inspiration while writing this track?
Val Fleury: I’m very much the problem-solution type, I feel like my friends would say that I’m often putting out fires and trying to motivate others. I was looking to create a champion sound, so I wrote “Rain Dancing” as a fun soundtrack for finding relief to issues that may rage internally or around you.
You make multiple references to the body and body movement in your lyrics, and the human body is the most prevalent aspect of your music video. Why?
Val Fleury: I love that the body is a vessel for positive change and creativity. It felt natural to be prevalent in the video.
“SO SO SOS,” you sing in the pre-chorus. To what (or whom) are you reaching out?
Val Fleury: I’d definitely say both the universe, and self.
There's an underlying helplessness lurking in the depths of this song. Can you speak to this emotion?
Val Fleury: The struggle can be so real sometimes. We’ve all been there! I’d hope that this song could bring about good spirits and a good time.
Can you discuss the choreography of the chorus and the decisions behind those movements?
Val Fleury: Penny (PENNYWILD) and Barret (Andrew Barret Cox) are both brilliant dancers and choreographers. I’m connected with Penny via NapGirls, and knew that she regularly releases her #WILDWEDNESDAY series, which I absolutely love. I reached out to her to collab with me, she was 100% in and teamed (up) with Andrew for the project. They slayed so hard!
The song's production centers around your vocals, with a supporting electronic dance beat. What was your intent when crafting the music with ESCQ?
Val Fleury: Working with Eric and Chris (ESCQ) is the best! We often start with the production, then layer over lyrics inspired by the vibe of the song or whatever’s on my mind at the time. With this one, I feel that both the music and words developed at the same time.
What do you love most about “Rain Dancing”?
Val Fleury: That it makes people happy.
Have you ever done a rain dance before?
Val Fleury: They say music becomes the soundtrack to your life; I dance every day.
What is coming up for Val Fleury? What are you most excited for in 2017?
Val Fleury: I’ll be kicking 2017 off in Nicaragua, I’m playing a huge NYE party at Maderas Village. The lineup is incredible, and the place is so lovely and inspiring. I’m also happy to be releasing more tunes and travel more next year. My dream would be to make it to Bali or Brazil. Maybe I’ll get to meet the love of my life too, Shia LaBeouf.
cover photo: Val Fleury © Eric Nelson