What if you took some great garage rock and added some sprinkles of the Hellacopters to the mix? You get a really tasty album by The Peawees from Italy. A band that has been going strong for over two decades now. The band does not spend time trying to push boundaries or take huge musical risks. They focus their time on crafting songs that would be as at home in the 60’s as they are now. This is a fun, addictive album that you can listen to in less than 30 minutes, which gives a good excuse to just play it all over again.
‘Walking Through My Hell’ crashes in all at once with the vocal of Herve’ Peroncini making an immediate impact as he sings with an edge created with years of experience but also a lot of melody. This song is direct and wastes no time in its two and half minutes and sets the stage perfectly for what is coming for the remaining 9 songs. Put this thing on your local jukebox and watch the people start moving to the beat. Tommy Gonzalez (drums) and Fabio Clemente (bass) ring in ‘A Reason Why’ on nice MOD beat with Carlo Landini (guitar) and Peroncini (also guitar) providing crunch to the beat and a fun guitar solo that you could almost be lifted from early Hanoi Rocks in tone and approach. The chorus leaves a hook in the brain. ‘Stranger’ is super catchy and features some awesome rocking piano that takes the song to a whole other level. The band keep the party going with some Hellacopters style adrenaline on the fast tempo ‘Christine.’ The bass and drums on the chorus sound awesome as do the Chuck Berry inspired guitar riffs.
Reaching the end of side one, ‘Justify’ offers an easy going rhythm and blues soulful type ballad that is extremely catchy. It ends the first half of the album in fine style. Current blues rockers Vintage Trouble would really appreciate this one. Peroncini shows another great side to his voice within the context of the album. Flipping the album over MP3 style, the band rips into ‘Leave This Place’ with some punk energy and razor hooks. The groove by Gonzalez and Clemente is awesome. ‘Phil Spector’ offers some classic rock n roll with a sticky like fly paper chorus featuring some terrific ‘yeah, yeah, yeahs.’ If this was the soundtrack of his hell as he describes it, hell is sounding really good.
‘The Matter’ offers some great vocal work to build the sneaky good hook as well as great guitar riffs by Landini and Peroncini. This has become possibly my favorite song on the album with repeated listens. ‘As Long As You Can Sleep’ offers a huge chorus that has kept drawing me back to this one. The Peawees do an awesome job of inserting musical breaks in their songs to provide diversity and really maximize the effects of the beats and riffs. I also really like the cool use of repetition in the vocals at the end of the song. Bringing the album to a close ‘Til My Mojo Works’ introduces some nice harmonica work and is a solid song for my tastes, but it does not reach the level of the others. I might have swapped it with ‘As Long As You Can Sleep’ as I think it would have offered a stronger closer to the album.
The Peawees sound great here and have done things the old school way with ten songs mostly under three minutes in length. The CD age tended to find bands trying to fill all 80 minutes with music while the transition to this digital world where albums do not have any restrictions in terms of length has really found bands returning to the past and falling in line with what works best on vinyl. I have no doubt that this album would sound even better blasting on my turntable with the way it is made. This is a really fun rock n roll album that is best enjoyed at a loud volume. Highly recommended.