About THE DaLES
More often than not, the most affecting and inspiring music is borne from the emotional impact derived from the most unfortunate of circumstance. The sounds crafted by the L.A. based band known as The Dales are no exception. Their debut album Marie was named for and inspired by Dales’ bass player Kyle Vanes' girlfriend who lost her battle to breast cancer in 2015.
The echoes of that tragedy ring through Marie and resonate in the bittersweet sentiment and alluring melodies that provide its wistful embrace. Yet, Marie is more than simply a requiem to eternal love. It’s a set of songs that still resonate with unfettered optimism while finding an upward glance even in the face of unbearable loss. From the resolute refrains of opening track “Pillars of Sand” to the final resolve of the stunning title track, these melodies soar with conviction, resolve, drive and determination. Indeed, the evocative harmonies that grace such songs as “Liberty Square,” “Still the Love” and “Hiding in the Light.” Moreover, with the allure and emotional grasp bestowed on tracks like “I’ll Get By” and “Whistlin’ Jack,” The Dales create a sound with an infectious energy and intuitive intent that all but ensures its instant attraction.
These are age-old anthems, songs that resonate with strength, faith and perseverance. The Dales convey an emotional connection that’s hopeful and eternal, all the while unafraid to share their vulnerability in the wake of heartbreak and uncertainty.
“A number of the songs address what happens when there’s an immeasurable sense of loss,” says band co-founder Drew Lawrence. “Yet the interweaving theme of the album is really about life, love and making the best of the time we have.”
It’s little wonder then that the band has attracted the kind of high profile attention normally reserved for bands with far more experience and collective credits. The album’s breakout single “Still the Love” caught the attention of NPR’s World Cafe, which opted to spotlight the song in an October 2017 broadcast. Vanes says of the song, “It’s a life-inspired message about eternal love that was delivered in the throes of grief. A reminder that through tragedy, hardship and loss...the love still remains.” The video that accompanied the song received additional attention from the Stand Up To Cancer support organization, which posted it on Facebook in hopes that it would be an inspiration to others. The group reaped further attention when various local NBC and ABC affiliates opted to feature them on their newscasts.
With the upcoming official release of Marie, The Dales are set to garner the wider recognition they so clearly deserve, thanks to their impeccable harmonies and astute songwriting. The band originally formed in early 2016 when multi-platinum songwriter Drew Lawrence (Christina Perri/Jar of Hearts, Lindsay Sterling), vocalist and keyboard player -- enlisted four of his best friends -- Vanes, vocalist Carrie Turner, guitarist/vocalist Preston Pope and drummer Blake Paulson -- and began crafting the material that would eventually make its way to Marie.
The aforementioned video for “Still the Love” caught the attention of Grammy nominated producer Jerry Streeter (The Lumineers, Brandi Carlile), and subsequently prompted him to produce The Dales’ debut. Given that initial encouragement, the band embarked on a yearlong tour that brought them to venues throughout the U.S., often in the company of acts like the White Buffalo and Cris Jacobs when they weren’t headlining concerts on their own in their native L.A.
Ultimately, it only takes a single listen to Marie to understand why The Dales are well poised for their big breakout. In retrospect, they can’t quite be termed an overnight success, due to the fact that Marie wasn’t widely heard or given adequate distribution the first time around. Still, the second time could be the charm. And while the music originated with sadder circumstance, The Dales should find some solace in knowing that they’ve been given another chance to ensure that Marie’s memory lives on.