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  • Karlee Skipper

Review: "The Valley" - Laura Marano

Laura Marano never fails to create music that perfectly encapsulates her honest emotions through vulnerable lyrics and an unforgettable melody. With “The Valley,” she continues this trend by wearing her heart out on her sleeve and holding nothing back. The song details the aftermath of a relationship that has ended and the hopeful possibility of reconnection. Marano wrote this song from her own experience, when she was living in Los Angeles and her former boyfriend was living in another country. After breaking-up, she was wondering if he would call her when he was back in town—back in “the valley.” In the verses, Marano provides an insight on the break-up and the extent of how close they were before it all ended. In the first verse, she sings: “You told my mother you’d be back for your birthday// When she told me, I laughed at your wordplay// I still wanted you back in the worst way, though// I’m so typical.” Then in the second verse, she sings: “Told Vanessa, cause she knew I wasn’t feeling right// She’s not used to seeing me, seeing me cry// Think a part of her was still on your side// Oh, it’s so typical.” With references to both her mother and her older sister, Vanessa, Marano reveals that her family had a strong rapport with her former boyfriend. After the break-up, it appears that he was still in contact with her mother and even her own sister empathized with his side of the story. This de-villainizes him by portraying him as the type that mothers love and implies that the break-up may not be completely his fault, differing from what most break-up songs suggest. In the pre-chorus, she begs him not to let their story end, before bursting into the chorus. With the infectious hook sung on repeat, she invites him to call her when he comes “back to the valley.” In “The Valley,” Marano gives a detailed background of her break-up with cleverly written lyrics that flow effortlessly into a catchy pop anthem.

“The Valley” is a high-spirited pop track that embodies Marano’s cheerful energy with infectious beats and a lively melody. The song immediately kicks off with synth sound effects and a keyboard that emulate a heavy 80s pop vibe. Right before Marano begins singing, a set of high keyboard notes play, introducing the track to the first verse. The production continues through the verse, pulling an emphasis on the lyrics. Before the pre-chorus, an added muffled vocal effect echoes in the background, before the instrumentation picks up. Muted guitar notes are heard through the pre-chorus as the song builds. The production briefly pauses for the final line, drawing focus on Marano’s compelling vocals, before bursting into the chorus. With synth heavy production, high end guitar chords are played through the background, providing an additional dynamic to the song. Towards the end of the chorus, harmonizing vocals enhance the whimsical atmosphere and showcase Marano’s angelic voice. There is another brief production pause, before transitioning back into the verse. The song maintains a steady structure throughout the second verse and chorus, creating a flawless flow for the track. When the bridge begins, the instrumentation contains only the keyboard and Marano’s voice with light vocals echoed in the background. Then, the second half of the bridge introduces the synth beat and guitar as the song builds to the explosion into the final chorus. The song closes out with the production muting while the last line is sung, ending the song with one final bang. “The Valley” is another outstanding addition to Marano’s impressive discography, showcasing her innate ability to create perfectly-crafted pop tracks that fans will fall in love with instantly.

Laura Marano is a singer, songwriter, and classically-trained musician. In 2019, Marano dropped her debut EP, Me. Then in 2020, she released her second EP, You. These two projects combine to showcase that “there are always two sides to every story.” In 2021, she released a deluxe version of You. In July 2022, she released the surprising third chapter, Us. Currently, fans anticipate the release of her upcoming debut album. Not only is Marano a skilled artist, she is also a talented actress. She is well-known for her role as Ally in the hit Disney Channel series, Austin & Ally. She has starred in many movies such as The Perfect Date, Saving Zoe, which she also produced, and The War With Grandpa. Her most recent film was 2022’s Netflix Original The Royal Treatment. On August 31, 2023, fans will get to watch her in the interactive Netflix Original romantic comedy, Choose Love. The movie will feature two original songs from the actress. Between her music and acting career, Marano has many projects, keeping fans on their toes for her next move.

Written By Karlee Skipper



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