Peaness – ‘World Full of Worry’

By Tom Walsh

In a world which seemingly lurches from one disaster to another, we each develop our own coping mechanisms. For Chester-based trio Peaness it’s to write, in their own words, “sad bangers,” and their debut ‘World Full of Worry’ is chocked full of them. It’s the ideal blend of dark, self-defeating lyrics wrapped up in summery, poppy riffs and chords, creating a delightful slice of indie melancholy.

Written and partly recorded prior to the Covid-19 pandemic it’s a debut record that, if anything, sounds more prescient than it would’ve had it been released, as planned, two years ago. It arrives via the band’s newly formed label – Totally Snick Records – and is an encapsulation of the band’s exuberant live shows and reflective songwriting in 11 carefully crafted tracks.

‘World Full of Worry’ feels like a riposte to the curated lives people create for themselves to impress others. It’s a frank record that speaks to all the burdens we carry and is a nod to an acceptance that not everything about you is perfect and that’s fine. Tracks such as ‘irl’ and ‘Girl Just Relax’ both address how the world puts pressure on everyone to conform to this uniformed standard of beauty.

Peaness have an uncanny knack of putting a sarcastic edge on overwhelming situations; it’s one of those comfort blankets that many of us adopt at times, there’s no better way to make light of a moment than to take the piss out of it or of yourself. It’s how Peaness manage to instil an unbridled amount of joy through their songs, even when they are talking about doomed relationships, anxiety or self-loathing.

Tracks such as ‘Worry’ manage to both be uplifting and heart-breaking at the same time. It talks of the self-doubt and endless questioning that comes with being in a relationship you feel is slipping away but delivers it in a style that feels comforting. It’s an atmosphere of “don’t worry, we’ve all been here, it’s not your fault”.

In essence, in attempting to write the aforementioned “sad bangers,” Peaness create the kind of uplifting tracks that fill dance floors and foster a sense of belonging. It’s the catchy hooks weaved from Carleia Balbenta’s guitar, the cutting lyrics of Balbenta and bassist Jess Branney, the sweet drum fills of Rach Williams and the glorious three-part harmonies that give ‘World Full of Worry’ that indie delight we crave.

There are some real highlights on this record, including the self-deprecating ‘What’s The Use?’ in which Peaness put a bouncy rhythm on the boredom of modern life and those days where you just aren’t feeling it. Long-time live set-staple, ‘Kaizen’ is the closest the trio have to an anthem, providing a somewhat reminiscent sound to the glory days of skinny jeans and skinny nightclub floors of the mid-2000s.

It’s been a test of patience for Peaness to finally unleash their debut record but those two years have been worth the wait. ‘World Full of Worry’ is a beautifully crafted album which manages to capture years of frustration, anxiety, and sadness and put them into some of the most uplifting songs you’re likely to hear. The world should embrace more sad bangers.

TOM WALSH

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