Peace - ‘EP Delicious’ (Columbia)
10 Sep 2012
"Peace do whatever they want, however they want to and EP Delicious exemplifies this attitude at its greatest; through its adoption Peace have used their influences to transcend pigeonholes and instead create their own brand of what Harrison Koisser describes as 'rock magic at its best'..."
It’s been a hell of a couple of months for Birmingham’s Peace, armed with the hype that began to surround them when they emerged in the spring of 2011, they’ve been pretty damn busy making quite a name for themselves. A debut single on Deadly, big UK tours with Mystery Jets and Manic Street Preachers, their own headline stint around the country and signing to a major label have all left Peace in the strong yet somewhat compromising position as a proper full on hype band, and we all know how that can end.
The problem with finding yourself inside the hype machine is the cold hard fact that it can spit you out at any times it likes, the only way to emerge from it with your credibility still in tact is quite simply to produce some very good music – which is ultimately quite a fair deal. It’s with EP Delicious, their first release for Columbia, that Peace have been asked to show us what they can do, a bar of expectation has been set and we’re all wondering if they can meet it. Well, not only do the proud brummies meet it, they exceed it by far. EP Delicious will not only justifiably elevate all the hype these guys are getting, it will undoubtedly also create a whole new wave of followers and believers.
'Oceans Eye' begins the EP and the sudden cymbal crash mixed in with the driving kick drum seemingly alludes to their own sudden arrival onto the music scene. It’s a two minute explosion of energy combined with an extra thirty seconds of experimental delay pedals and guitar effects. In a similar vein to their debut single ‘Follow Baby’ it’s a throwback to 90’s-esque Brit-pop, yet elements of Peace’s own influence shine bright throughout - Sam Koisser’s ridiculously groovy bass-line is a particular highlight, especially pinned against brother Harrison Koisser’s raspy vocals and the backdrop of the twanging guitars.
The guitar effects continue into second track ‘Bloodshake’ which most people will recall as their first demo ‘Bblood’ the breakout tune that started Peace-mania off. We’re propelled from the 90’s grungy brit-pop into an indie track laced with tropical beats and calypso drums; the syncopated guitar riffs coupled with the continuous gravelly vocals leave us with what is ultimately a tropical-rock pop anthem. The chorus is filled with ‘ooohs’ and ‘aaahs’ that wouldn’t be out of place on a Klaxons track and catch you like a cold in middle of winter, yet it’s the build-up at the end of the song which I admire the most. The bass line that initiates the break-down suddenly explodes into a mound of screaming guitars and thrashing drums pinned again the same Foals-esque riff we’ve heard throughout. Dancing becomes head-thrashing and we rock the fuck out.
It’s on the third track ‘California Daze’ that the thrashing comes to an abrupt halt and is instead replaced with a lullaby of lusciously slow-paced guitars blended with wistfully nostalgic vocals. Cheesy, poetic vulnerability is displayed at its best with lyrics such as ‘she tastes like sunlight’ and ‘go and watch the pretty girls in town.’ Aptly named, the track’s airy backing harmonies seem like an ode to a Beach Boys song, with its dreaminess transporting you to a beach in California you’ve never been to with someone you have yet to fall in love with. It builds and builds until we reach the immense Chili Peppers-ish inspired guitar solo, which makes you want to jump up and hug the world before the fade out transports you back to the lulls of the simple riff that started this modern day masterpiece off.
It’s at this point you wonder where the EP can go. The stunning success of ‘California Daze’ seems hard to top, so they don’t try to. Instead of attempting to create another masterpiece, they cover one – Binary Finary’s trance classic ‘1998’. The next ten minutes feel like Peace have accidentally left the mics on in the studio and ventured off into their own little world. It’s a journey which starts off with dark, sexy bass-lines before suddenly erupting into an explosion of sounds and screams that transport you to a place of dark, haunting exhilaration. ‘it’s spectacular, how you suck my blood. baby you’re dracula’ utters Koisser and the voyage continues through this brilliantly macabre take on anIbiza dance floor classic.
Yeah, that’s right – the guys who have just given us 90s Brit-pop followed by tropical afro-beats and 60’s haze have now conquered Binary Finary’s classic. It’s ridiculous. Who could or would dare to turn one of the hugest trance hits known to mankind into their own version of epic rock? Evidently, Peace would. Peace who start and end their sets with the same song and acquire billboard sized posters saying ‘What the fuck Birmingham’ in their hometown. Peace, who paint the walls of their gig venues and blow the studio’s monitors due to the enormousness of their guitar solos. They do whatever they want, however they want to and ‘Delicious’ exemplifies this attitude at its greatest; through its adoption Peace have used their influences to transcend pigeonholes and instead create their own brand of what Harrison Koisser describes as “rock magic at its best”. I couldn’t have put it better myself.
Peace's 'EP Delicious' is out now.
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