By Valerie Helton
In the mood for a rock throwback? Well you are in luck! On Friday, October 19th, Greta Van Fleet releases their debut full-length album, Anthem of the Peaceful Army from Lava/Republic Records.
Greta Van Fleet is a band from small town Frankenmuth, Michigan that is a “high-energy hybrid of rock n’ roll, blues and soul”. The band members (Josh Kiszka-vocals, Jake Kiszka-guitar, Sam Kiszka-bass/keys, and Danny Wagner-drums) are all under the age of 23 and have the energy that goes along with it.
Much like myself, all four members were raised listening to their parents’ old albums. The three Kiszka brothers also had inspiration from their father, who was a musician and encouraged creativity in their house. This helped give birth to the music they have created, including their new debut album.
When I first heard “Highway Tune” on the radio about a year ago from their debut EP Black Smoke Rising, it caught my attention. It brought back the memories of listening to classic rock with my parents (including the songs my dad’s band would play in our basement all throughout my childhood), and I just couldn’t stop listening. Their music is so different compared to other genres out today, and I know it’s something that my parents’ generation have missed.
The band kept the same 1970s Led Zeppelin and Rush sound throughout the album, but also have mixed a little current rock in a few songs. Jake’s guitar riffs and Josh’s powerful vocals are rich and incredibly strong, and not something you see in music nowadays.
The new album contains ten new songs, written by all four members, that include topics such as “fresh starts, love, integrity, innocence, adventure, diversity and peace, the life cycle and its inherent responsibilities, courage, masked deceptions, revolution, and truth”, according to the press release.
The album kicks off with the track called “Age of Man”, which really shows that the album is about love and new starts with lyrics like “March to the anthem of the heart, to a brand new day, a brand new start”. This song also included some of my favorite lyrics from the album, “Beauty lives in every soul. The more you love the more you know. They pass the torch and it still burns. Once children then it’s now our turn”.
My Top 3 “can’t stop listening” songs on the album are “Brave World”, “The Cold Wind”, and “The New Day”. The latter adds an acoustic vibe, and put me in an instant good mood. I can see myself playing this song in the car while on a road trip. Jake’s guitar riffs towards the end are an added bonus.
“Brave New World” is a great mixture of classic rock and current rock sounds, I think this is the reason why I keep going back and listening to this song the most, and why all age groups have fans of GVF.
While “The Cold Wind” has more of a 1970s vibe, It also showed off Danny’s “heavy hitting, machine gun drum riffs”, which I’m a sucker for, and felt like the rest of the album really could have used more of this.
GVF chose “When the Curtain Falls” as their first single. It was released on August 15th and already has more than 13-million audio streams, while the music video has over 1.7 million views. It seems to be their most “catchy” song, but not my favorite.
GVF ends the album with acoustic song “Anthem”, which talks about what is happening in the world today, singing “With the news, there’s something everyday. So many people, thinking different ways you say. Where is the music, tune to free the soul. A simple lyric to unite us all you know”. The song ended with the band chanting “And every glow in the twilight knows, that the world is only what world is made of. Just you and me, can agree to disagree. And the world is only what the world is made of” multiple times.
The tracklisting for Anthem of the Peaceful Army is as follows:
- Age of Man
- The Cold Wind
- When The Curtain Falls
- Watching Over
- Lover Leaver (Taker Believer)
- You’re The One
- The New Day
- Mountain of the Sun
- Brave New World
I really enjoyed listening to their new album, and I cannot to see what they have in store next! You can pre-order the debut album here: https://gretavanfleet.lnk.to/AOTPA. Fans who pre-order the album will receive an instant grat track, the brand new song “Watching Over”.