Emma Ruth Rundle and Thou have released the emotional and heavy new ballad, “The Valley”. The single reveals the collaborative project’s deeper, darker and vulnerable side. “Fragile yet powerful; sad but fearless. It’s the feeling you get when you listen to a lot of Emma’s music,” Thou guitarist Andy Gibbs describes.
Emma Ruth Rundle tells, “The Valley is a place. A landscape that lacks vistas and perspectives. An analogy for unrelenting, crushing mental illness, physical pain, addiction and the isolation that can arise as a result of these diseases. There is a choice one must make once initiated into The Valley’s fold; to press on living where no hope will ever show itself or to dissolve into its bleak grayness. On the journey, remains of those who came before us and succumbed are visible. Instead of hope, we turn to anger and defiance for fuel and with those we fortify ourselves. The ending doesn’t resolve, but successful escape from The Valley is unlikely.”
Emma Ruth Rundle (appearing courtesy of Sargent House) and Thou’s groundbreaking collaborative album, May Our Chambers Be Full sees its release October 30th via Sacred Bones (pre-order). While their solo material seems on its face to be quite disparate, both prolific groups have spent their lauded careers lurking at the outer boundaries of heavy scenes, each having more in common with DIY punk and its spiritual successor, grunge.
The debut straddles a similar, very fine line both musically and thematically. While Emma’s standard fare is a blend of post-rock-infused folk music, and Thou is typically known for its downtuned, doomy sludge, the conjoining of the two artists has created a record more in the vein of the early ’90s Seattle sound and later ’90s episodes of Alternative Nation, while still retaining much of the artists’ core identities.
The visual art accompanying this work was created in collaboration with preeminent New Orleans photographer Craig Mulcahy. The faceless, genderless models are meant to emphasize this pervasive state of ambiguity and emotional vacillation, the images falling somewhere between modern high fashion and classical Renaissance.