I neglected to post on Peace’s debut album IN LOVE when it came out in 2013 so I am reviewing both it and their brand new second release HAPPY PEOPLE.
Peace’s debut IN LOVE was like a combination of Stone Roses, early Blur, and in the vocals Oasis. Swirling Madchester retro versus traditional guitar rock. Some very good tunes - catchy and complex - Higher than the Sun, Float Forever, Delicious, Waste of Paint, Sugarstone, California Drain, Scumbag (Last two only on the deluxe version). A groove is present but anchored to a guitar and swaggering britpop attitude in the vocals.
HAPPY PEOPLE turns up the groove considerably and also throws in shorter faster songs with a few slow songs mixed in featuring new touches like an acoustic guitar. The Blur/Stone Roses/ Oasis influence still is strong but many of the songs now recall a punked up version of the Happy Mondays – Call it the Happy Roses if you will.
The best songs on the album – Perfect Skin, Gen Strange, God’s Gloves, If Music Was to Blame – contrast the swinging bass with the britpop guitar in a tension free party atmosphere. The big difference between HAPPY PEOPLE and IN LOVE is that IN LOVE partly separated the rock songs from the swinging songs though there was a little overlap. On HAPPY the overlap is now everywhere. This is a classic example of a band coming up with a sound and fine-tuning and honing it over their first and second record. I can’t wait to see what they do on their third.