Our Lady Peace


It has taken me quite a while to put my finger on what draws me to listen to "Naveed" by Canada's own Our Lady Peace over and over and over. The raw and untempered guitars certainly tempt me to give ear. The unique edge to lead singer Raine Maida's voice adds to Our Lady Peace's mystique, but sometimes that unique voice can kill an album after two or three songs.

But, I still find myself wanting to hear "Naveed" more. In many ways when I listen to their debut CD I WANT to find something wrong with it. I want to be able to say (as I want to do so often), "this band isn't ALTERNATIVE. They just copy others." I now realize that what makes it impossible for me to forget Our Lady Peace is their lyrics. They just hit me and force me to enjoy the CD.

Another nice feature of the CD is the artwork. The photography is great and the artwork on the CD doesn't just follow the style of the cover, but blends seamlessly into the total package. And (to add to the lyrics feature) the liner notes has all the words to the songs, so check them out.

While Our Lady Peace clearly has punk musical influences (I would NOT call them a punk band, though), each member of the band has his own musicians he credits. Maida "puts Otis Redding at the top of his list of influences." Drummer Jeremy Taggart has been inspired by Miles Davis and John Coltrane, and guitarist Mike Turner picks no bones about claiming the British Punk influences.

And the more I listen, the more I like the hard-edged music, the less I fear losing interest in Raine's voice, and the more I feel touched by the words. I think that this triple combination (music, voice, lyrics) makes "Naveed" one of the top CDs of 1995.

Jeff Jolley
© 1995, Rational Alternative Digital
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