Love and Peace will be Seasick Steve’s tenth studio album, and the blues veteran continues in his stride. You could argue that producing blues albums has become Steve’s raison d’être.
The title track begins the record with a strange vocal warp and echo as Steve asks, “Hey man, what’s the issue here?”. But an authentic country riff soon kicks in. “Got to stop the hatred now, get back to love and peace”, sings Steve. The track is an anthem asking us to look at how we treat each other, requesting a little more kindness and compassion. It is also an ode to the golden peace anthems of the sixties.
Putting down his electric instruments for the hypnotic acoustic track, ‘Carni Days’, Steve performs solo slide guitar and paints a picture of a long lost era of Americana. “Early in the morning, there’s dew on the grass,” he sings, as he sets the scene of a carnival coming to town.
‘Clock Is Running’ perfectly demonstrates how a track does not need to be complex to enjoy. The beauty is in its simplicity. It features his signature bluesy riffs, lo-fi guitar solos and crashing percussion and is an ode to living in the moment. He refers to himself as the “walkin’ man,” a title he has often been proud to wear.
The explosive single ‘Church of Me’ is another stand out track; a sizzling ode to following one’s path, rather than settling down in love. It builds slowly, before the rich harmonica kicks it up to full-on bluesy rock.
Seasick Steve brings his usual bluesy-soupy goodness to the album, a mixed recipe of rootsy Americana, classic rock and twangy folk, which always goes down well. Seasick Steve may be formulaic but it is a formula he has nailed. While many of the tracks from Love and Peace would not stand out from his discography, it certainly offers some gems and an authentic taste of sixties nostalgia.