Slipping back into the psyche fused guitar riffs, rutty bass and popish themed choruses, ‘Happy People’ is an apt follow up to debut album ‘In Love’. The likes of “Gen Strange” and “Lost on Me” boast upbeat rhythms and infectious drum beats that plunge your mind into a state of euphoria, beckoning that urge to dance. Sleazy guitar chords throughout “Flirting USA” drag you to a relaxed California beach which although at times appears to tempt Peace dangerously close to that typical pop like sound, are taken away by easy strums of Douglas Castles guitar which subside any worries and are quite simply bliss.
“O You” see’s the teashade front man Harry Kossier ever so modestly devote he’s “trying to change the world that you live in”. Addressing a multitude of issues throughout the album including Kossier’s threat over his own masculinity in “I’m a Girl” there’s a sense that ‘Happy People’ isn’t all that cheerful. lyrics featured on track “Happy People” seem to undercut the dress that upbeat and carelessly jangly melodies have created and pull back anxious thoughts, “slowly getting older, where you even happy then” the fittingly happy tunes that build up this album seem to have paved way for deeper and more sour lyrics “try to move but there’s nowhere to go”.
This gloomy outlook is embellished throughout the album lyrically but rises to its prominence instrumentally during “Saturday Girl”. Exuberant melodies which tingled your ears are replaced with remarkable calmer and lethargic beats. Discordant clanging as chords are weakly struck from an acoustic guitar, compliment a fatigued sounding Kossier, who almost exhaustedly churns out “Saturday Girl, your killing me dead”.
The more complex attempts on track ‘Money’ to craft meaningful and relevant lyrics, showing a satirical view on our fiery desire for money at times fall flat, “welcome to a world where big coins pay for beatings and diamonds pay for girls”. But with a clatter of guitars lending hand to an unbelievable catchy hook -that will remain wedged in your head for weeks to come- these somewhat less than perfect verses are almost irrelevant.
Prominent and big choruses are what entrance the listener on this album and are what Kossier appears to have parcelled to perfection. There’s no doubt that songs like; “World Pleasure”, “Lost on Me” and “I’m a Girl” stand out above the majority with their Peace Esq. melodies and more divine metaphors, but amongst these there still remains a handful of gems that showcase the bands multitude of talents.
‘Happy People’ at times see’s Peace grappling with knotty concepts they fail to fully grasp, yet with this album they’ve refined a more distinguished sound that’s constantly growing.
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Review by Jacob Flannery |