Rob Galloway

Help The Yalla Yalla’s release their second album, Diamond In Dirt!

Want to turn $12.41* into something much, much better? For exactly that, you can help The Yalla Yallas finish production and release their second album Diamond In Dirt.

(*£8/$12.41 US/$12.70 CN, courtesy of your friendly blog currency converter!)

At that price, you’ll also in essence be pre-ordering a downloadable copy of the album when it’s ready. Add a few more dimes and you’ll be in line for a hard copy of the cd.

After hearing the demos when the album was first being written (a review of the demo tape from earlier this year can be found here), and now after listening to a reviewer’s copy of the album in it’s almost-finished state, I can assure you, you would much rather be listening to The Yalla Yallas than holding those twelve dollars and some change in your hands.

Through PledgeMusic, your contribution at any level (with many other perks to go along with your contribution, including an option for £20/$31.14 for your name in the cd credits) will help make this second album a reality. As of this writing, only 13 days are left to reach their goal so they can proceed with production.

As of this writing they are at 27%, so I implore you to one or more of the following to get to know The Yalla Yallas:

  • Give them a listen; you can stream music from their first album on the Yalla Yallas website
  • Head to their MySpace page for a listen to “Under Attack” which will be included on Diamond in Dirt
  • Watch the in studio clip of an acoustic version of “Death Shoes” (one of my favorite tracks) at the end of this post
  • Friend them on Facebook to keep up with the latest information
  • Check out the interview with Rob Galloway I did this past February to learn more about them

As for the album itself, it’s been an amazing process to witness the writing, recording and evolution of the songs. A quick review will have me telling you that from demo to current state, the tracks from Diamond In Dirt are now fully caffeinated. The energy level has risen to Full Steam Ahead, and is punctuated by Rob Galloway’s wonderfully growling voice. The beauty of the songs lie in the fact that they can easily lend themselves to being played fully plugged in, on stage full guns, and yet I can also picture them stripped down, acoustic around a campfire. The bones of the songs are lovely indeed, but with tough skin around them. I’ve never been so closely involved as a witness in the composing and releasing of an album, so this has a special place in my heart, and I’m really hoping to see them make their goal. If you’re interested in helping out with a worthy creative project and have a few bucks to spare, please visit The Yalla Yallas’ Diamond In Dirt project profile on PledgeMusic, it will be most appreciated!

The Yalla Yallas will also be included within today’s Trash City Radio Show transmission, so if you can try to catch the show live, and if that’s not possible you can find it later on in the archives right here on the blog.

(Photos courtesy of Sara Brooks)

The Yalla Yallas

Good morning! I can’t believe it’s only 11 am and I’ve already drank my coffee, finished the mirror painting, and I have an interview of sorts I put together with Rob Galloway of The Yalla Yallas, a band I’ve been listening to for the past several months (another discovery made thanks to the Strummerville Foundation, click image at left to go to their website and you can hear their first album streaming in its entirety). I had intended to give a little information about them in a post, but that idea evolved into one better (kind of like one louder), and Rob was gracious enough to spend some time answering a few questions about the band. I did not address this in the interview, but worth mentioning now, the band’s name was carefully chosen to reflect a little bit about who they are, as it is also arguably one of Joe Strummer and The Mescaleros finest songs).

Shan: First, for readers of this blog who are hearing about The Yalla Yallas for the first time, could you give some background about where you are from, and how you got together?

Rob: We’re The Yalla Yallas were from Leeds in Northern England. I formed the band in December 2007. I was a solo artist doing some electronica punk rock style thing which was influenced by artists such as Big Audio Dynamite, Beck, and Eels. I decided a change of direction and got my best friend Matthew Dempsey in to play bass. Will Grinder had just left his previous band 3 Mile High and joined us alongside on-loan drummer Kev Bellwood from 4 Letter Holiday. Kev was later replaced by Matt Delahunty who now completes the line up.

How did you become associated with/involved with Strummerville?

Rob: It was when I was a solo artist … Pockets who was one of Joe’s best friends and is a trustee for the charity contacted me. I had just released my solo single ‘Girls Are Meaner Than Boys’. He got in touch and said he could help us he wasn’t sure how as the charity was pretty much still in its infancy but he promised he would help. Time goes by and just by chance at a gig in London … I think it was MC5 and Primal Scream at the Royal Festival Hall … Anyway Pockets managed to recognise me … He had never met me properly and we had only ever spoken briefly on the phone … We had a good drink etc… We stayed in touch and when Trish took over as charity manager she basically allowed the funds to go through for us to record our debut album ‘Act Of Defiance’ … They have done alot for us and were so proud to be involved with them.

Shan: How would you describe the sound of The Yalla Yallas, and who are the influences that are most prominent (and how do they find their way into the music you make, be it sound or style or philosophy)?

Rob: The sound is very energetic … It’s positive … It’s raw … It’s honest … It has instinct … It just feels right … The lyrics are something I believe in … They have to be. As for influences … well thats everyday life … Love, Anger, Politics, War, Business, Money, Lust, Despair, Apathy, Hope, Humour. I’d like to think things are going to get better in this world … I think that’s why there’s an air of positivity about us. I think I take dark subjects and somehow inject some hope or humour into it. As for artists that influence us … We could be here all day … Myself and Will have the most diverse musical range and even then were so different from each other but also so the same … Will can listen to Hip Hop, Drone Metal, Blues, Reggae and Folk music all in the same hour. I can listen to Punk, Pop, Rockabilly, and Latin or World music. Dempsey will tend to listen to music that lacks any credibility,and Matt tends to listen to only music that has some weird tenuous link to The Wildhearts or Metallica. However I feel after all that we end up sounding like a mix of The Stooges, Guns n Roses, Rancid, and Social Distortion which is no bad thing. There’s no real thought about how we sound … we just sound like we do and we like what we do.

Shan: What is most important to you?

Rob: Honesty is important to me … I believe we are all equal … and I believe we should look out for one another … why should where you are from or the colour of your skin or anything else for that matter determine how well you get treat by another human being … We should have more respect for ourselves than to carry about prejudgemental fears about another human being. It’s not good for the soul. We are better than that.

Thanks so much to Rob Galloway for taking the time to answer my questions. As I see from one of their updates they’ll be playing a few shows in England in the near future, including one in Leeds on Wed 10th March at Brudenell Social, supporting Los Mondo Bongos (featuring Members of The Mescaleros, The Alarm, Simple Minds, and DJ Ray Gange), I shall as always, be cheering from afar!