Kit Vale is the solo project of Toronto-based singer/songwriter Jen Simpson. Inspired by a diverse mix of musical tastes ranging from post-punk to doo-wop, to hip hop and rock, Vale combines elements of these influences, culminating in a melodic synthesis of sound filtered through her distinct gothic, garage-glam style. Some influences include: Peaches, Santigold, LCD Soundsystem, Blondie, Bikini Kill, The Shangri-Las, PJ Harvey, Kate Bush, The Breeders, Mazzy Star, Joy Division, and Violent Femmes.
It’s Our Time is Vale’s first single, produced by Rob Sanzo and Matt Glover and released through new Toronto indie label Riot!Riot!Records. The inspiration for It’s Our Time initially stemmed from Simpson’s own experiences with prolonged abuse. She decided to mine these moments and connect them to larger systemic societal issues of sexism, bigotry, and violence. Tuning into the emotional turmoil currently occurring on a global scale, this song allows Simpson to share her experiences, while also encouraging others to keep going in the face of adversity and to remind them of their ability to enact change.
Says Simpson: “ This is a powerful time in history for women, for people of colour, for the L.G.B.T.Q.I.A.+ community, for people with disabilities, and many other traditionally disenfranchised groups. We are at a precipice. An obvious turning point. This song is a rejection of sustained abuse on an individual, a national, and a global scale. It’s time to shift things in a more positive direction. Instead of continuing on, running this same treadmill of fear and violence, we need to realize that we can step off. We can stop. And when we stop, we become rooted, and from there we can grow.”
Combining the energy of Pet Shop Boys-esque synth lines and the phraseology of hip hop, It’s Our Time is a tongue-in-cheek, modern anthem that embodies discontent, rebellion, and, ultimately, hope.
Currently the lead singer of Toronto band, Neon Bloom, Simpson has also fronted past bands Machetes (managed by Roger O’Donnell of the Cure) and Brooklyn based rock n roll band The Never Evers. Collectively, she has toured and played in Canada, Taiwan, Czech Republic, England, and the U.S, living in Brooklyn, New York for several years. Past interviews and work in other bands have been featured on CBC, 102.1 The Edge, BBC, Indie 88, Sirius XM, Stingray Rock Alternative, 91X FM Alternative Radio, 94.9 The Rock, CHCH TV, Stingray LOUD, Stingray NOW 4K, Montreal Rocks, Canadian Beats, New York Magazine: Bedford & Bowery, and more.
Through her years as an artist, model, and live performer struggling with epilepsy, Simpson has a plethora of experiences, emotions, and stories to draw from. A student of criminology and sociology, a literature junkie, and an advocate for disability and social justice, Vale writes lyrics with meaning and songs that explore societal issues infused with personal experiences, and emotional truths. Vale is the distillation of Simpson’s unique life experiences mixed with some glamour, social analysis, and critical examination. With live shows serving as almost Shamanistic events, once able to play live again, Kit Vale is set to invoke some genuine voltage and release amidst the Apocalyptic atmosphere of late.