The current political landscape can wreak havoc on your mental health. This is something that Valhalla Kid explores in his political EP There’s Good Days and Bad Days. Written specifically for the disillusioned leftist, the EP delves into the depths of depression and a longing for the world to change. Using an interesting blend of gothic, post-punk and hip-hop, he takes on wanting to help change the world and our own fear of individual limitations.
One of the four members of the Lowlives Collective, Valhalla Kid brings their progressive politics and weird interests to these tracks. With some complex flows and 80s sounds, the EP offers heartwrenching and vulnerable tones with a distinct left-wing edge.
The EP opens with ‘Maybe this is the norm’ and its rather experimental sounding opening. There are dark sounds woven into a gothic soundscape. This gives way to Valhalla Kid’s emo-rap vocals as he moves through a realisation. The gothic sounds in the background are an amazing contrast to the paced vocals creating a captivating dichotomy. A rather short track that really gets you thinking, it is the perfect opening to the consciousness of the EP.
‘Snow Palace’ continues a thread from the opening track, but there is something completely unique about the song. The dark soundscape of the first track moves to a minimalist and isolated feeling for the opening. This spirals into a melody that gets your heart pumping in a way that matches the vocals. The flow of the vocals is wonderful and goes through pulses that gently bash against your senses. There is a lot resting in the lyrics that you need to pick apart. The electronic tones of the melody mix with a desolate line for a sombre track.
The opening of ‘Something New’ fills you with a strange sense of cynicism that is enhanced by the vocals and lyrics. This is a very interesting track as it is both mellow and sombre. It loses some of the gothic edge for an experimental floating atmosphere that compliments the lyrics. Valhalla Kid’s vocals have a dark and depressed feeling at times as he works through a dark turn in life. This is a very relatable track that actually offers a lot of motivation through a feeling of not being alone in the struggles you face.
‘History of Anxiety’ has a wonderful opening full of twinkling tones that run across your brain leaving drops of light in their wake. This smoothly rolls into beats for an amalgamation of sounds. As the music swells, the vocals first roll with it before sideswiping everything. The interplay between the music and vocals are a great sonic representation of anxiety and the feeling it creates in your chest. The vulnerability in this track is touching and easy to connect with.
The EP ends with ‘Kaddish’ which progressively swells through the opening with vocals lightly zipping through it. There is a poetic feeling to the lyrics from the start as they hit through your chest with their depth. This is the perfect way to end the EP with a reflection on life, a glance at left politics and touch on the modern world. There is a lot packed into the track that makes you think and want to make a change in the world.
Valhalla Kid uses left-tinged lyrics to take a look at the world, emotions, mental health and wanting to make a change in There’s Good Days and Bad Days. Each track touches on something new using experimental soundscapes, smooth emo rap and poetic thought-provoking lyrics. With a touch of gothic ambience and post-punk tones, the EP will leave you with a lot on your mind.