- Words Notion Staff
Sam Valdez selects 10trax for Notion from artists that she can't get enough of, including Cigarettes After Sex and Sorry.
Having grown up in the surreal glare of Las Vegas islanded in the Nevadan desert, although now based in LA, Sam Valdez has developed a knack for distilling the mystery and beauty of desert life into her songs. Immersed in music from a young age, Sam was a child violinist and captures vivid snapshots of her youth in her captivating songwriting.
Melding elements of Americana, indie-rock and pop, the singer-songwriter reveals her latest song “Unwind” from her upcoming EP ‘Crush’, made in collaboration with Grammy-nominated producer Gianluca Buccellati who was worked with the likes of Arlo Parks, The Marias and Lana Del Rey. Writing songs for her latest EP functioned as a means of escape and fantasy, with the artist musing on ‘friendship, sexuality, and… life on other planets.’
The hypnotic “Unwind” explores notions of intimacy, ebbing with Sam’s delicate vocals and signature dream-like production style. Speaking on the release, Sam explains: ‘I pictured it like a stretched out day where you stress and run through all of these inner conversations and obstacles to be closer to someone, only to change your mind and prefer to be alone.’
To celebrate “Unwind”, Sam Valdez selects 10trax for Notion that have inspired her, with tracks from Beach House, MorMor and Frank Ocean all making the list.
"Slow Dive" by Alison
"A lot of noise and also emptiness in this song, kind of makes you feel like you’re floating out in space. The vocals never go big, its pretty spoken throughout which has this effect of making you feel close to them."
"Nothing's Gonna Hurt You Baby" by Cigarettes After Sex
"This band is so comforting, the chorus of this song is like a blanket. Their approach is so chill and understated but makes you feel it all in the best way."
"Dum Surfer" by King Krule
"Such a unique voice and so much chaos in this song. The production is crazy good."
"Whatever Comes to Mind" by MorMor
"This track is very honest, I love listening to it when I feel caught up and overwhelmed its like everything is fleeting, and reminds me to breathe and just be happy to exist."
"BNR" by Crumb
"This whole record is amazing. They build so much tension throughout and the production choices are really interesting."
"Ivy" by Frank Ocean
"The perfect heartbreak song. I love the chords and melody in this track, they move so perfectly with the vocals."
"Walk in the Park" by Beach House
"This song hits hard. Every time I hear the chorus, I want to scream it. They are also insane with synths and drum machines so every song has this signature sound that never misses."
"What Once Was" by Her's
"No matter what state of mind I’m in this song is the perfect mood. Its dark but light and makes you feel so good, really genius."
"Comfort" by Julia Jacklin
"I listen to this when I want to sob. This song makes me feel nostalgic and weirdly hopeful. The minimal production really makes you focus on the story and her voice which is other worldly."
"Cigarette Packet" by Sorry
"Sorry makes you feel like you’re in another world. They have this distinct sound of playfulness mixed with anger in a lot of their songs that is really captivating."