The Values are the three G’s: Glamorous, grungy and groovy.
What a combo, right? This unique NYC-based group has the moves and the glitter of The Supremes combined with the eclecticism of Sylvan Esso and the angst of Courtney Love’s Hole. Today we are sharing their first born with you, their debut self titled EP (listen in full on this week’s The Music Meetup).
BTRtoday met up with Mason Taub (vocals/guitar) and Evan Zwisler (guitar) (vocalists and miscellaneous instrumentalist Mel and Nathalie Escudero were unable to join) in Brooklyn for a drink and found out that the making of this fun EP wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows.
“This album was definitely one that caught us at a moment of transition in the band,” Zwisler says after taking a sip of beer. Zwisler is the only original member currently playing in The Values. He and a friend first started the band around four and a half years ago when he moved to NYC. The EP was recorded with the original bassist and drummer, who have since moved on to focus on another music project, The Lounge Act.
Taub joined about two years ago, after she started dating Zwisler. Initially skeptical of maintaining both a romantic and musical relationship, romantically and musically the arrangement blossomed into a beautiful bond between the two and has been very beneficial for The Values.
“I think we like spending time together way too much to not be in a band,” Zwisler says.
Taub and Zwisler wrote the songs for the EP over several years. Taub explains that it’s taken this long to release them not only because of the lineup changes, but also because their first producer charged them double the going rate and delivered unusable recordings.
“I just kept telling Evan like, ‘I think there’s something wrong with the vocals, they just sound wrong,’ turns out that he just totally duped us,” Taub says. “We played them for our friend Darren Hoffman, several months later, and Darren was like, ‘guys, I’ll mix one of these songs for free for you, I just can’t in good conscious let you put it out like this.’”
Now, they are finally able to confidently share their baby with the world.
The EP provides four tracks you can’t help but sing along to whether you know the words or not. Strong vocals passionately singing lyrics like, “your love is like a dime-bag, maybe only good for a night,” are so relatable you can’t help but share your own values with The Values.
Taub’s vocals switch from powerful jazz singer to throaty insanity that feels like emotions are bursting from every pore. It’s no different for the melodies; they go from danceable pop beats, to fist-slamming garage rock in one song.
Zwisler and Taub both agree that their sound is evolving to become more electronic and intend for their next EP to include more drum machine and electronic loops. “Since we’ve figured out our setup, we’ve just been furiously writing—we already have three new songs written in the course of like three weeks,” Taub says. Catch them October 6 at The Well for a Planned Parenthood benefit—all proceeds and a cut of the bar will be going to the cause.
Listen to the entire interview with Taub and Zwisler along with the premiere of The Values EP on this week’s The Music Meetup.