Happy People, the second full length release by English indie rock band Peace, is an enjoyable piece of alternative music that showcases heavy influence from the great English bands of the past. It’s easy to pick up on the heavy Beatles influence, but there are also a strong Oasis feeling to the album. Peace manages to capture some of the same styles and elements of their predecessors, but ultimately, Happy People is an indie rock album at heart, and one that struggles to stand out in the crowded genre.
The opening track “O You” is a catchy pop tune with a chorus that has a great retro feel, similar to the Beatles in its harmonies and guitar work. The track is a solid start to the album, but the remainder of the album fails to keep the same spirit and catchiness that is demonstrated so well on “O You”. The following track “Gen Strange” is a forgettable piece of groove-based rock. The lyrics are pretty nonsensical as well, sticking to the usual tropes of this genre. The song “Perfect Skin” has a great chorus, featuring a heavy bass riff and bombastic harmonies, but the rest of the track feels too similar to this decade’s style of indie music to be interesting.
The track “Someday” feels just like an Oasis track, namely their hit “Wonderwall”, as it features a similar vocal delivery and slowly paced acoustic guitar. However, Peace gives the track their own flair by adding atmospheric synths and soft vocal harmonies in the chorus. It’s a solid track, and a good change of pace for an album that feels all too similar. The following song “Money” is a lyrical bright spot for the album, singing about the consumerism of modern culture and our obsession with money. “Welcome to a world where bitcoins pay for beatings and diamonds pay for girls” sings lead vocalist Harry Koisser. However, the instrumentation of this track is rather uninteresting, feeling like 2000s era Muse track.
The album’s final two tracks “Under the Moon” and “World Pleasure” leave off the album on a happy note, with the former being one of the better tracks on the album. It’s a moody, downtempo piece that feels slightly different from the rest of the album, or at least enough to leave an impression on the listener. However, the album as a whole fails to hold on to the listener’s attention and by the time the final track comes to an end, it’s hard to remember a particular stand out track. Happy People is to unoriginal and bland to really capture and engross the listener, which is a shame for a band that showed potential on their debut In Love. Peace’s sophomore effort is far from a bad album, but rather just an average album, and one that is not worth taking the time to listen to.
Standout Tracks: “O You” and “Someday”