Album Review

Megan Eidelbach

My only criticism of this album is that the sound itself seemed a bit repetitive.

If I still have as youthful a voice as Juliana Hatfield does at the age of 42, call me a happy woman. As for the talent, I couldn’t hope to even come close, but a girl can dream, can’t she?

On the former Lemonhead’s 11th album, Peace and Love, 90s grunge icon Hatfield shows a softer, sweeter side. A more acoustic sound with some songs touching the heart, and others slightly tapping the nerves. Produced, engineered, and released on her own label, Ye Olde Records, Hatfield’s wildly autobiographical album is quite different from most of her previous releases, including the fact that not only did her sugary voice sing on every song unaccompanied by any instrument played by none other than herself (in other words she played all of the instruments on this album as well as produce and release it), but the sound was powerful in its innocence and the marvel was in its simplicity.

The title track, “Peace and Love”, is a beautiful, melodic dreamy-eyed love story gone wrong, however, she states, she “won’t give up on peace and love”…

“Why Can’t We Love One Another” is amazing. This is a song that has your feet tapping with the rhythm and your head slowly moving side to side with the beat while listening to the softly overpowering lyrics and the simple, sweet guitar. A wonderfully done masterpiece.

“Let’s Go Home” is another love-gone-bad. A simple song of apology with a great beat, however, the lyrics make it creative. “`I filled the fridge with food, I swept under the couch, I haven’t seen the mouse…. Baby, I’m sorry, come back with me, let’s go home…’” Almost humorous and sad at the same time.

“Evan” is a song about former Lemonheads band mate Evan Dando, whom she proclaims love to in the bravest of ways. The best line? A shrugging sentence of self-acceptance. “Evan, I just love you, I guess.”

My personal favorite, however, is a song called “Faith In Our Friends.” It is a song about how “love comes and goes” and how your friends are always there for you and carry you through anything… the worst love affair, the bad dates, divorce, etc. If I could I would dedicate this to everyone I know who has carried me personally through the hard times, as I am sure a lot of people who hear this would.

All in all, Hatfield’s songs are a mixture of innocence and guilt, pleas of love, and proclamations of self-acceptance. My only criticism of this album is that the sound itself seemed a bit too repetitive, and in turn seemed after awhile too much of the same thing over and over again. Other than that though, it was good to see the seemingly ageless Juliana out there more talented than ever singing her lungs out, staying the same age as she was while I was in high school in the 90s, and taking me back in time until I could almost feel my thighs shrinking and the bagginess of my grungy jeans and my Soundgarden T-shirts shrouding me all over again.