Kody and Kyle Valentine are at their best when making music.
It’s a form of art that the brothers have bonded over throughout the years.
The duo are the masterminds behind The Holy Knives and will begin their tour in Albuquerque on Feb. 15.
The Holy Knives are touring in support of their album “Year of the Black Dog.”
“The album was about a 10-month process in total,” Kody Valentine says in a recent interview. “I think it could be also said that making our first EP, ‘Ritual Bloom,’ was part of making the album. The two releases are brother-and-sister albums. They have a lot of similar ideas and themes. If we included the time spent on the EP, it would be just over a year.”
The San Antonio, Texas-based brothers headed to Sonic Ranch in Tornillo, Texas, just outside El Paso, to record “Year of the Black Dog.”
They worked with producer Manuel Calderon, who helped shape their desert dreamscapes – a mood-driven album with a Western heart.
The atmosphere creates a surreal backdrop to Kody Valentine’s self-exploratory lyrics.
The brothers say that when this album was being written, there was no thematic center for its ideas.
“We write 50/50,” Kody Valentine says. “It’s a lot of collaboration. We write a lot of things, and the best comes out of our sessions writing together. If we are writing solo, we’ll bring it to the other and build it out.”
The Holy Knives took their name from two of the brothers’ favorite works of art: the film “The Holy Mountain” by Alejandro Jodorowsky and the poetry book “The Singing Knives” by Frank Stanford.
The brothers draw musical inspiration from acts such as Timber Timbre, Arctic Monkeys, Beach House and Portishead.
Kyle Valentine says working with his brother feels like second nature.
The pair don’t often find themselves arguing or at an impasse.
“If we have a stalemate, the producer comes in and is the tiebreaker,” Kyle Valentine says. “We’ve got a mutual understanding that if one person is feeling the idea, then we’ll work on it. We entertain the other person’s belief of the song. There’s a trust that we’ve built. We often find ourselves saying, ‘I don’t really see it, but let’s try it out.’ A big part of our success is communication.”