Artist: Taz And The Maniacs
Album: Peace And Love
Falkirk appears to be a hot bed of musical talent at the moment with the likes of Vulture Party releasing their debut album, the long overdue return of Arab Strap and now up and coming rockers Taz And The Maniacs who have just released their first long player, Peace And Love.
The album starts of with gentle lapping waves, birdsong and someone walking along a beach before big guitar riffs and rollicking bass kick in on Strange Reflections. It’s a fairly bold opening and over the next hour or so, the pace rarely slows as the band go through the 15 tracks that make up the album.
It’s very much a family affair, with three brothers and a cousin in the band all taking the moniker Modson, a la The Ramones and it’s easy to hear the influences through the album including nods to the likes of Oasis, The Who, Springsteen and Warron Zevon.
Early on, The Poem is a stand out track with the vocal taking on a more matter of fact delivery, not unlike Falkirk’s finest, Arab Strap. Some bands steer away from singing in their dialect but the track benefits from a more deadpan vocal against a backdrop of pounding drums and shearing guitar.
The band slow down momentarily for War, 4 minutes of elegant piano and striking mouth organ with Taz Modson singing a heart on sleeve vocal that is perhaps the album’s highlight.
It is, though, on songs such as The Sound, Platoon and Leon, with its wah-wah guitar, soaring vocal, fervent keys, rhythmic bass and drums that the band do consistently well. Don’t Say Goodbye is another tune, a simple but effective bar-room blues, melancholic lament of love lost and broken hearts.
I had expected out of 15 tracks on a debut album, elements of “filler” but pleasingly and surprisingly this isn’t the case here. All in, it’s a confident and at times brash record with enough variety and depth across the album to keep the listener engaged and interested. It might be some time away but it would be great to see the band and hear how the songs translate in a live environment and also how they will follow this up.
Taz And The Maniacs debut album, Peace And Love is out now and can be purchased on the band’s Bandcamp page here and can also be streamed on a number of digital platforms.