“We dare you not to fall in love with Malena Zavala’s honeyed voice on this slow-burning indie tune” – NYLON
“Should I Try serves as a stunning introduction to a colossally exciting new musician”– Crack in the Road
“Argentinian born Malena Zavala is set to take the world by storm”– Wonderland
Last year’s singles ‘Should I Try’ and ‘If It Goes’ showcased Malena Zavala’s inventive new sound. Fusing Latin rhythms with her dulcet vocals, they announced a vital new voice unshackled from the conventions of indie rock. The Argentine born London raised artist, producer and filmmaker is now set to release debut album ‘Aliso’ and new cut ‘Could You Stay’ adds new layers to her exuberant artistry which has already been championed by LOBF, Wonderland, Nylon and much more.
Born into a family of creatives, Malena draws inspiration from the women in her family and small town in the north of Argentina; from the strong Latino character of her Mother honoured in If It Goes, to her maverick Grandmother who in particular encourages a free-thinking approach.
“Every person in my family is truly unique to me and I draw inspiration from different parts of their life and ideology. I’m really lucky to have people around me that let me be me” Malena was in a band with her brother for five years before he took an opportunity to move to California, a life dream of his. Whilst in the UK, he was a strong musical influence as an older sibling, and would educate her in his music taste, instrumentation technique, songwriting and recording styles. Losing her mentor, although hard at first, was a vital step for her to step out of the shadows. She holed herself up in his house in Aliso Viejo, California and in a surge of energy and desire to prove herself, wrote most of her first LP in a couple of weeks – within 6 months she had recorded, produced, mixed* (with Gareth Jones*), completed all the art, visuals and videos.
“It’s really satisfying to find a way to express yourself and get things off your chest that have been there for years, I’m really glad I found it and kinda surprised aswell. I’m finally at peace.”
Aliso is a kaleidoscopic patchwork of ideas. It concerns itself largely with themes of cultural identity, self-doubt, acceptance, artistic freedom, miscommunication between cultures, and relationships. It’s all set to a backdrop of liquid psych rock and dream pop that draws influence and inspiration from Beach House, Tame Impala, Blake Mills and Devendra Banhart.
Could You Stay is a perfect distillation of her influences, her background and free thinking approach. Vocally and sonically it’s pitched between Kevin Parker and Victoria Legrand, but in its bluesy guitar playing and Latin style drums we hear an artist who’s already carved a niche for herself. It’s a song about falling in love with a friend and not telling them, Zavala’s voice capturing the bittersweet sensation like a film camera captures light.
This year is looking pivotal for Malena Zavala as she arrives already at the cream of the new crop of unparalleled indie artists.