Co-founded by Sasha Chifura and Shelley Liu, Valve Sounds is “committed to the growth” of these genres in Australia, and “dedicated to creating a space where these artists can make an impact on an international scene,” reads a statement.
With its resurrection, a string of artist signatures and a release list. The Melbourne-based label relaunches with a roster featuring Sydney R&B multi-hyphenate Maina Doe; Nigeria-born, Melbourne-based producer, vocalist and performer IJALE; and Brisbane indie/R&B newcomer King Ivy.
To celebrate the return of Valve Sounds, the trio will release a special collaborative track, “WYA” (Where You At), next Thursday (February 2).
Mushroom Group has been “looking for the right hip-hop/R&B partner for some time now to complement our other labels,” notes Mushroom Labels COO Chris Maund.
Valve and its co-founders “stood out because they are rooted in that scene and have a clear vision to break fresh hip-hop/R&B artists globally. Valve signs artists whose sound is both authentic and limitless, giving them a real opportunity to cut through and deliver internationally,” he says. Billboard.
Maund points to the success of the recent Maina Doe single “Primal Design.” Mushroom Group serviced the track, which went on to land “a load of global playlists,” he explains. “It will be the beginning of many.”
After launching in 2015, Valve Sounds released recordings from UV Boi, Nasty Mars, ESESE, Villette and Maya Hirasedo and gained a reputation for its events and parties in Melbourne, spotlighting international and local artists.
Highlights included events at Melbourne Music Week’s flagship venues in 2016 and 2017, the State Library of Victoria and St Paul’s Cathedral, and its team curating a stage at the Falls Festival, featuring VICE.
“Some of my fondest memories have been at Valve Sounds parties that we threw back in the day,” says Liu. “Feeling grateful to be working with Maina Doe, IJALE and King Ivy – three artists who I truly believe represent the future of music coming out of Australia and beyond.”
Through the new arrangement, Valve Sounds will have access to Mushroom Labels’ full suite of services across marketing, promotion, audience building, social strategy, distribution and analytics, as well as global promotion, marketing and audience branding services via UMG’s Virgin Music Label & Artist Services, an alliance forged in 2022alongside Mushroom’s existing US and UK teams.
Previously, Valve Sounds had a label partnership with Sony Music.
Valve Sounds now operates among the 25-strong group of companies within the Mushroom Group, established 50 years ago by the late Michael Gudinski.
Mushroom Group CEO Matt Gudinski, son of Michael, paid tribute to his new partners. “Their clear vision for the brand and expertise in the R&B and hip-hop scene stand out as key industry leaders of the future,” he comments. “It is with great pleasure that we welcome them into the family and look forward to a long-term relationship.”
Mushroom labels include Liberation Records, Ivy League, I OH YOU, Soothsayer, Bloodlines, Liberator Music and 100s + 1000s.