The Album Leaf

The Album Leaf

Infobox Musical artist
Name = The Album Leaf

Img_capt =Jimmy Lavalle in Tokyo, 2006
Background = group_or_band
Origin = San Diego, California, U.S.
Instruments =
Genre = Ambient, Post-Rock
Years_active = 1998 - Present
Label = Sub Pop City Slang Arena Rock Recording Co.
URL = []
Current_members = Jimmy LaValle Matthew Resovich Drew Andrews Timothy Reece Andrew Pates Luis Hermosillo
Past_Members =
Associated_acts = Tristeza The Locust The Blackheart Procession

The Album Leaf is the solo project of Jimmy LaValle.



The Album Leaf officially began in 1998 as the solo project of Jimmy LaValle, guitarist for San Diego, California-based post-rock band Tristeza. LaValle has also performed in several other San Diego-area bands, including The Crimson Curse, The Locust, and GoGoGo Airheart.

"An Orchestrated Rise to Fall"

Jimmy LaValle had been playing guitar in the post-rock instrumental band Tristeza. Being a multi-instrumentalist, during downtime in the fall of 1998, he began playing drums for San Diego band GoGoGo Airheart. The singer and guitarist for the group, Mike Vermillion (which later inspired the song name "Vermillion" on "One Day I'll Be on Time") recorded LaValle doing improvised material playing to a vintage roland drum machine on a Rhodes Piano that would become his first full-length album, the 10-track "An Orchestrated Rise to Fall". Benjamin White of GoGoGo Airheart and Vermillion both supplied added improvisation with synthesizers and vocals to these recordings.

Before Tristeza released "Spine and Sensory" on Makoto records in 1998, the band was talking with a handful of different indie record labels. One of the record labels was "The Music Fellowship" out of Salt Lake City, Utah. LaValle asked them if they would be interested in releasing his solo material. They accepted, and "An Orchestrated Rise to Fall" saw release in 1999 on CD. Later in the year, Tristeza and The Album Leaf both signed with newly started Tigerstyle Records out of New York City. A&R rep for the Tigerstyle, Mike Treff, had previously done his own record label named Linkwork Records. Tigerstyle wanted to release the vinyl version of "An Orchestrated Rise to Fall", since it would be one of the first Tigerstyle releases, and being only on Vinyl format, Mike opted to make it Linkwork Records last release.

LaValle played his first official Album Leaf show at the Che Cafe in the winter of 1999. Band members for this show consisted of Rafter Roberts, Jimmy Lehner (of Tristeza), Leilani Clark (of local San Diego band, "the Straight A's" also with LaValle), and Benjamin White (of GoGoGo Airheart).

"One Day I'll Be on Time"

Soon after signing with Tigerstyle Records, LaValle received his first recording advance. He used this money to buy his first computer, and purchase equipment for a home recording studio. He did his first recordings and those songs were released as a 4 song EP entitled "In An Off White Room" on Troubleman Records Unlimited. The title for the EP was named after the color of his home studio, which was in his living room. During off time of Tristeza's busy tour schedule promoting their Tigerstyle records release of "Dream Signals in Full Circles" in 2000, he began writing "One Day I'll Be on Time".

The Album Leaf performed their second show during Tristeza's 2000 spring tour, at South by Southwest in Austin,Texas. This show was at Club Deville, at a day party for online distributor, This line-up consisted of Lavalle, Leilani Clark on guitar and keyboards, Tana Helean on keyboards, Susanna Waiche on bass and Jay Hough (of GoGoGoAirheart) on Drums. They shared the stage with Tristeza and The American Analog Set. This lineup also did a 4 week U.S. tour in the summer of 2000 with Andy Robillard (also of GoGoGo Airheart) replacing Hough on Drums.

After the summer tour, he took a full time job in San Diego at newly started music house, "Singing Serpent" producing jingles for television commercials. This also gave him access to a full service recording studio. LaValle used this studio to re-record the material he had written for "One Day I'll be On Time". Rafter Roberts recorded the track "Storyboard" and can be heard in the beginning of the song talking with LaValle about his guitar tone. Jason Soares of San Diego band Aspects of Physics provided drum programming for the song "Vermillion", and fellow Tristeza band-mate, Christopher Sprague, played guitar on "In Between Lines" and designed the album art. After completing this record, LaValle left Singing Serpent citing "Making jingles was killing my creativity!"

"One Day I'll Be on Time" saw worldwide release in early 2001. Jón Þór Birgisson of Icelandic band, Sigur Rós, picked up the record at a record store in Reykjavík, Iceland. This prompted them to ask LaValle to support their upcoming U.S. tour. This would put The Album Leaf in front of new audiences, which helped the band gain popularity. The Album Leaf supported Sigur Rós on their first full US tour. This line-up consisted of LaValle, Luis Hermosillo (of Tristeza) on bass, Nathan Delffs on keyboards and guitar, Eric Hinjosa on keyboards and Andy Robillard still on drums. This line-up also toured the U.S. during December 2001 and Summer 2002 without Hinojosa.

During this time LaValle wrote 2 songs for Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes to sing on and 2 songs for Marc Bianchi of Her Space Holiday beginning a series of 7" singles entitled the "Collaboration Series" released by Better Looking Records. This series is limited to 1000 copies and is only available to subscribers. The tracks with Oberst were titled "Hungry for a Holiday" and "Bad Blood". The tracks with Bianchi were titled "Call in Blue' and "Reso" (after future violinist, Matt Resovich). The Her Space Holiday collaboration would not be released until 2003.

In January 2003, The Album Leaf toured Japan for the second time. The first time was an opening slot for LaValle's band, Tristeza, in spring of 2002 where he performed with fellow band members Luis Hermosillo and Eric Hinojosa. This was a headlining tour with fellow San Diego band, Ilya supporting. LaValle enlisted Duane Pitre, Matthew Baker and Hank Morton of Ilya to back him along with Robillard on drums.

Immediately following this tour, LaValle was offered to support Sigur Rós' European tour. This tour he performed solo and started incorporating electronic beats and loop pedals into his live show in order to perform his songs as a one man band. Later during this tour, Kjartan Sveinsson, Orri Páll Dýrason and María Huld Markan of Sigur Rós and Amiina respectively, began to join LaValle on stage performing on a couple of songs during his half-hour performance slot.

Upon returning home, he had put together another line-up for supporting the U.S. portion of Sigur Rós' tour. This line-up was Hermosillo, Delffs with Tim Reece now on drums. Kjartan Sveinsson, Orri Páll Dýrason and María Huld Markan would still join them on stage. This tour saw the Album Leaf playing at music venues such as Radio City Music Hall in New York City, gaining even more popularity for the band.

After these tours, LaValle decided to leave Tristeza and focus on the Album Leaf full time.

"A Lifetime or More" and the "Seal Beach EP"

During the following months of 2003, LaValle began recording again. He recorded 3 tracks for a split EP with New York City's, On! Air! Library! for the Arena Rock Recording Co. called "A Lifetime or More". Drew Andrews provided guitar for the track "Another Day". During May of 2003, with his new addition of electronic beats, he recorded 5 songs released as the "Seal Beach EP" for Spanish record label Acuarela Discos.

In August 2003, The Album Leaf headlined a tour of the U.S. with fellow San Diego band, Ilya. This tour introduced the Album Leaf's use of live visual projection art by Andrew Pates and the line-up went down to just LaValle and Drew Andrews on keyboards and guitar with them incorporating laptops and Pates projecting visuals onto a backdrop of the stage. The line-up was becoming more permanent.

Following this tour, LaValle traveled to Iceland to begin recording his third full length. During the Sigur Rós European and U.S. tours. LaValle received an invite from Sigur Rós to record in their Icelandic studio. During these recording sessions the Album Leaf performed 2 shows in Iceland, one being a part of the Iceland Airwaves music festival with LaValle being backed by Kjartan Sveinsson, Orri Páll Dýrason and María Huld Markan of Sigur Rós and Amiina with Sindri Mar Finnbogason playing bass.

In December 2003, The Album Leaf opened for The American Analog Set on their U.S. tour. This line-up consisted of Matt Resovich on violin, Andrew Kinney (of The American Analog Set) and Sean Ripple (of The American Analog Set) with Pates doing live projections.

"In a Safe Place"

In January 2004, LaValle signed with Seattle based record label, Sub Pop Records and Berlin, Germany based European label City Slang Records. LaValle completed "In a Safe Place" in February 2004. Jón Þór Birgisson, Kjartan Sveinsson, and Orri Páll Dýrason (most of the members of Sigur Rós), María Huld Markan (of Amiina), Gyða Valtýsdóttir (formally of múm) , Pall Jenkins and Matt Resovich (of the Blackheart Procession) all contributed to the record with Birgir Jon Birgisson, “Biggi,” engineering at Sigur Rós’ Sundlaugin studio.

"In a Safe Place" was released on June 22, 2004. The Album Leaf played a record release show at M-Theory Records in San Diego with its current line-up of Matt Resovich on violin, keyboards, glockenspiel, guitar, and vocals, Drew Andrews on guitar, keyboards, and vocals, Tim Reece on drums and keyboards with Andrew Pates projecting live visuals. Following the release, the Album Leaf toured for a year with little time off performing in the U.S., Europe, Taiwan, and Japan. During this time, the Album Leaf self released the "Red Tour EP" with 5 tracks. This was to showcase the band as individuals and each member (With the exception of Reece) providing their own song, the cd is also enhanced with a tour video made by Andrew Pates. The EP also featured a live recording of "Micro Melodies" a song that only appeared on the soundtrack for the film "Moog", a documentary about Robert Moog, the inventor of the Moog synthesizer. The track "Over the Pond" is also used in the film "The Family Friend" (L'Amico di Famiglia) by Paolo Sorrentino.

This record saw more commercial success and popularity establishing LaValle's The Album Leaf on the map and playing to bigger audiences.. Many of the tracks from "In a Safe Place" were used in the soundtracks for television shows such as The OC and .

Following the extensive touring, LaValle re-joined Tristeza filling in on guitar for 2 shows in Guadalajara and Mexico City in place of Alison Ables, the replacement to the band for himself. When he returned, LaValle began writing his next full length.

In December 2005, LaValle traveled to Seattle, Washington to Bearcreek Recording Studio to begin tracking the record. After tracking, he then traveled back to Sigur Rós’ Sundlaugin studio to mix the record with the help of Brigir Jon Birgisson and Joshua Eustis (of Telefon Tel Aviv).

"Into the Blue Again"

On September 12, 2006, "Into the Blue Again" was released on Sub Pop Records in North America.cite web |url= |title=The Album Leaf Steps 'Into The Blue' |author= |authorlink= |coauthors= |date= |format= |work= |publisher= |pages= |language= |archiveurl=|archivedate= 2008-07-07|quote= |accessdate=2008-07-07] The album saw an earlier release in Germany on September 8, 2006 and throughout the rest of Europe on September 11, 2006 courtesy of City Slang Records. "Into the Blue Again" sees a return to The Album Leaf’s conception and LaValle handling virtually all instrumental duties. LaValle’s few collaborators on "Into the Blue Again" are Josh Eutis of Telefon Tel Aviv, who aided additional drum programming and engineering on choice songs, The Black Heart Procession’s Pall Jenkins adding vocal harmonies on "Wherever I Go," violinist Matt Resovich (who performs with The Album Leaf live, and also played on "In a Safe Place"), Drew Andrews adding additional guitar work on select songs (Drew also performs with The Album Leaf live). In support of the album, the band toured extensively through the United States, Europe, Japan, Mexico and Taiwan. Lymbyc Systym supported most all of the band's US dates.

The first track 'The Light' was most recently used in advertisements for Channel 4's series of programmes 'Disarming Britain'.

Live band members

*Jimmy LaValle - Producer, Engineer, Mixing, Instrumentation
*Matthew Resovich - Violin, Guitar, Synths, Glockenspiel, and Vocals
*Drew Andrews - Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
*Tim Reece - Drums and Keyboards
*Andrew Pates - Live Visuals
*Luis Hermosillo - Bass Guitar



#"An Orchestrated Rise to Fall" Music Fellowship / Linkwork records, 1999
#"One Day I'll Be on Time" Tigerstyle Records, 2001
#"In a Safe Place" (World) Sub Pop records, June 22, 2004
#"Into the Blue Again" Sub Pop / City Slang, September 12, 2006

ingles and EPs

#"In an Off White Room" Troubleman Unlimited, 2001
#"Collaboration Series no. 1" with Bright Eyes Better Looking Records, 2002
#"A Lifetime or More" Arena Rock Recording Co. Split with On! Air! Library!, 2003
#"Collaboration Series no. 2" with Her Space Holiday Better Looking Records, 2003
#"Seal Beach EP" Acuarela discos, 2003
#"Seal Beach EP w/ Bonus Tracks" Better Looking Records, 2005
#"Red Tour EP" Self Released, 2005
#"Green Tour EP (aka The Enchanted Hill)" Self Released, 2007

Compilation appearances

#"Holiday Matinee cd compilation vol.2l" Better Looking, 2000
#"Music from the OC mix 2" Warner Brothers, 2004
#"A Lifetime or More" (Split w/on!air!library!) Arena Rock Recording Company, 2003

Gear used Live and in the Studio

* Fender Rhodes Stage Piano
* Minimoog Voyager (Anniversary Edition)
* Moog Prodigy
* Moog Rogue
* Moog Little Phatty (Signature Edition)
* Micro Korg synthesizer
* M-Audio Midi Controllers
* Yamaha SK20
* Boss RC-20 Loop Station
* Akai E1 & E2 Headrush Pedals
* Boss Delay Pedals
* DW Drums
* Korg Entrancer Kaos Pad
* Fender Telecaster Deluxe
* Schecter Guitars
* Fender Twin Reverb '65 re-issue
* Roland KC-550
* Musicman 2x10 combo
* Ernie Ball Volume Pedals
* Boss Chromatic Stage Tuners
* Boss Reverb Pedal
* Sennheiser in-ear monitoring system
* Electrix FilterFactory
* Electrix MoFX
* Alesis Micron

TV and film uses

* "Vermillion" appeared on a commercial for Hummer
* "Eastern Glow" appeared on an episode of The O.C.
* "On Your Way" appeared on an episode of The O.C.
* "TwentyTwoFourteen appeared on an episode of The O.C.
* "The Outer Banks" appeared on an episode of The O.C.
* "Another Day" appeared on an episode of The O.C.
* "Seal Beach" appeared on an episode of Brotherhood
* "Streamside" appeared on an episode of The O.C.
* "Window" appeared in a commercial for Veolia Environnement in Europe
* "Window" appeared in French film Le Concile De Pierre
* "Window" appeared on an episode of
* "Always for You" appeared on a commercial for Cadillac
* "Writings on the Wall" appeared on an episode of Grey's Anatomy
* "Red Eye" appeared on an episode of
* "Red Eye" appeared in Standard Films video Catch the Vapors
* "Into the Sea" appeared on an episode of I'm From Rolling Stone
* "Window" and "Thule" have been used on the radio show This American Life
* "Window" was used in Rob Bell's NOOMA episode "012 Matthew"
* "Over the Pond" was used in the trailer of the film The Family Friend by Paolo Sorrentino.
* "Over the Pond" was used in Rob Bell's NOOMA episode "010 Lump"
* "Storyboard" appeared on a commercial for Macbeth Footwear
* "Always For You" appeared on the Japan section of Sipping Jetstreams
* "Brennivin" "Essex" and "Thule" were used in the Paintball film "Natural Selection" by DERDER Productions
* "Writings On The Wall" appeared on the series premier of Sons Of Anarchy


* Jimmy LaValle's previous bands include: Tristeza, The Blackheart Procession, GoGoGo Airheart, The Locust, The Crimson Curse, The Swing Kids, Guyver-1, Stealtree and the Straight A's.
* Fans that have a specific Album Leaf tattoo get into the band's shows for free.
* Jimmy Lavalle has a tattooed symbol that reads 'The Locust' inside his bottom lip, from the time he spent playing in the band.
* Drew Andrews and Tim Reece also have their own band called Via Satellite.
* The Album Leaf won Best Electronic Act at the San Diego Music Awards 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007. They were not nominated in 2005.
* The Album Leaf won Best Alternative Album for "In a Safe Place" at the 2004 San Diego Music Awards.
* The final track on "In a Safe Place" contains a bonus track lying about 25 dB below the four minutes of apparent silence.
* Jimmy LaValle has sat in on numerous Sigur Rós concerts filling in on piano and guitar (he can be seen performing Viðrar vel til loftárása in the film Screaming Masterpiece about Icelandic music).
* Jimmy LaValle is sponsored by [ Moog Music] and [ Korg Instruments]
* Tim Reece is sponsored by [ Istanbul Cymbals]
* Andrew Pates created a DVD with Tristeza and has done live visuals for The Ataris
* In March and April 2008, Andrew Pates, Matt Resovich, and Drew Andrews went on a European tour together under the moniker, "From the Shade".
* Jimmy LaValle is an avid billiards player, participating in the APA league and cash-money tournaments around San Diego, CA.
* Jimmy LaValle also plays in the band Magnetic Morning which is a collaboration between Adam Franklin of the band Swervedriver and Sam Fogarino of the band Interpol.


External links

* [ The Album Leaf live performance by Silence Sessions]
* [ The Album Leaf on Korg]

Official Sites

* [ The Album Leaf's official website]
* [ The Album Leaf at Sub Pop Records]
* [ The Album Leaf at City Slang Records]


* [ The Album Leaf's Jimmy LaValle's Interview w/ The Scenestar] (June 2007)
* [ The Album Leaf interview with Jimmy LaValle on Semtex Music] (March 2007)
* [ Album Leaf interview with Jimmy LaValle] (September 2004)

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