Album review: "Peace of Mind"
California reggae quartet Rebelution has given fans three ways to listen to its third and latest full-length recording, "Peace of Mind." In addition to a studio disc of a dozen new tunes, the album features those songs on both a dub disc (remixed by Easy Star's Michael Goldwasser) and an acoustic disc.
The studio disc is standard, easygoing reggae-rock fare, from the peppy "Sky Is the Limit" to the mellower "Meant to Be" (which features Jacob Hemphill of local group SOJA). John Popper joins the group on harmonica on the breezy "Closer I Get," and Jamaican singer Lutan Fyah contributes to the love-everybody mood of "Good Vibes." The feel-good songs are pleasant enough- if not terribly revolutionary - except when the lyrics delve into vapid territory. "So High" is an overly simplistic, repetitive song about smoking weed that sounds mundane and formulaic, even for a reggae group.
Where the album truly falters is in its second and third discs. The songs on the dub disc blur together, sounding nearly indistinguishable. The acoustic disc fares only slightly better. Although most of it offers no improvement over the original studio versions, the stripped-down piano rendition of "Route Around" adds a subtle tenderness to the song's repetition.
--Catherine P. Lewis, Jan. 13, 2012