The Port Vale (band) interview

This interview was lost in our archives for a while but here once again is an interview with the band named after the football club…

The text is from the original interview conducted circa 1999.

We talked to the US band that were so interested in the club that they named themselves after the Valiants.

The music sounds great. I detect a slight Dinosaur Jr/Television influence in the songs. What artists/bands do you admire and did they inspire you to form a band?
Well I’m not sure who I would say inspired us to form a band because we’ve all been in bands before. Perhaps we inspired each other in a way because of the way we interpret music together as individuals. I couldn’t deny those influences, though. Television always had that ultra-fast sound that never got too terribly raw. I always liked that. Dinosaur Jr – definitely a study in off-the-path melody.

How long has the band been going for?
About a year and a half. Bret Shirley just joined as a bass player in the fall, replacing our former two-guitars and drums lineup.

Can you run through how you came up with the name “Port Vale” again please? What response have you had from Port Vale fans so far?
Well when we were looking for a name I recall searching long and far for names that both sounded and looked good to us, and while searching on the web I ran into a Port Vale FC website and the name stuck with me right away.

The response from the fans has been tremendous – I get a couple of letters a week from really rabid Valeites with good wishes and questions.

Do you look out for how Port Vale FC are doing?
I actually do, and I’m really excited about the flood of players being signed by Vale right now because it’s still early enough in the season for them to make a difference.

Any further news on European/UK dates?
Well we have a new record coming out in the spring sometime so just let them know over there that you want us and we’ll see what happens, eh?

How can UK-based readers order the CDs?
Parasol mailorder at is likely to be their best bet.

Any comments on
This is what I do for a living so I definitely have an opinion. I love a content-rich site like you have here. Polls and message boards are one thing but you have implemented the history and gallery sections, by far some of the most informative and (thankfully) subjective essays on Vale history available. The John Rudge section is absolutely brilliant – a subject like that has to be addressed both as its factual basis demands and as its emotional weight can’t ignore.

Here’s to Mr Port Vale.