A variety of music journalists – who should possibly know better – have led me to believe that Peace are IT. They’re the big saviours of guitar music, a leather-and-tassel clad wave of righteous rock & roll, ready to purge our radios of the twin shit prongs of Taylor Swift and Flo Rida with the merest flick of lank fringe.
There’s something a bit weird going on here though – Why do people need guitar music to ‘come back’? What does that even mean? Who are these poor souls, desperate for guitar music, but completely unable to find any? Because from where I’m sitting, listening to guitar music looks pretty bloody easy. At any given point there’s upwards of a million bands worldwide, all frantically bashing out 4 minute rock songs on Les Pauls, and I believe you can find them on this crazy new counting machine they’re calling the internet. Talk of a ‘comeback’ smacks of pundits and the industry cynically patronising fans (never that!), suggesting they people only really like something if it’s in the charts, if it’s clogging up the showbiz pages of The Sun, and if it’s nice enough for Joe Schmoe and his cloth eared mum to buy it. In fact, last time I checked, guitar bible Kerrang is -and has been for ages – the biggest selling music weekly in THE WHOLE WORLD… and I don’t think they’re writing about Peace…
In general, any act touted as the ‘comeback for guitar music’ should be avoided like a plague of peckish AIDS rats. They’re here to sell you a new form of boyband cos you’re all sick of the last one, nothing more. Fans who like guitar music have been keeping themselves perfectly happy before this lot showed up, and will doubtless do so long after they’ve gone.
Still, in the spirit of fairness I’m going to give Peace a chance (see what I did there). And I guess In Love is OK. At its best it sounds like The Charlatans when they were running a bit short on ideas, say, round album #4. The tracks are baggy indebted, loping along on groovy basslines and rolling drums, whilst singer Harrison Koisser stays in tune and warbles on about nothing much. Generally they make songs that are pleasant enough filler, kind of Tescos Readymeal Rock, minus any nasty horse meat based surprises. There are some good bits. Lovesick is a rough throated pop number that fancies itself as The Vaccines covering Boys Don’t Cry. Later on, Wraith has a neat stabbing guitar lick that a man might be tempted to describe as ‘angular’. This is followed by the stomping dub bass and anthemic guitar attack of Delicious, and at these points the album comes alive, but really, for me, only these points. Things get far worse on the horrible, plodding Sugarstone, a Christ-no-one-saw-that-coming synthesis of The Stone Roses, John Lennon and Oasis that manages to make me never want to listen to any of the above ever again. The rest of the record shuffles past in a jacket stitched from recycled riffs, lyrical guff, and reassuringly predictable melodies.
Trying to get a bit more of an angle in the band, I glanced at the press release, to be greeted by these words from Koisser:
“In Love kind of manages to celebrate every aspect of something it probably maybe isn’t really capable of making sense of. Saying that, does anything really make sense? Like, The camel’s milk doesn’t curdle… think about it”
I’m thinking about it Harrison, I really am. And whilst you’re trying your level best to come across as a deep, crazy and poetic human, ultimately, sadly, you just sound like a bit of a tit. Marks deducted for being so pretentious. 5/10