Peach Pit matures on "From 2 to 3"

by Ben Gardner

Peach Pit matures on "From 2 to 3"

Peach Pit is mostly known for melancholy indie-pop tunes such as “Alrighty Aphrodite” and “Shampoo Bottles,” but their sound takes a more mature, positive, and reflective turn on their new 11-song album, From 2 to 3. The Vancouver outfit, made up of guitarist Christopher Vanderkooy, bassist Peter Wilton, drummer Mikey Pascuzzi, and guitarist-vocalist Neil Smith, has released two prior albums, Being So Normal and You and Your Friends, in 2017 and 2020, respectively. This album represents a step forward for Peach Pit, both in terms of lyricism and musicality.

From 2 to 3 starts off with the bittersweet “Up Granville,” which was released as a single approaching the album’s release. On the track, Smith laments his efforts to love someone who doesn’t want to be loved, over a steady groove accented by Vanderkooy’s smooth lead guitar riffs. The next track, “Vickie,” is perhaps the most playful and lighthearted track on the whole album, the ‘Vickie’ in question being Smith’s best friend. The song serves as an ode to their friendship, as well as a platform for the lead singer to throw playful jabs. He thanks Vickie for being by his side, then does a complete 180: “But I thank God you don’t live next door to me.”

The instrumentals on this record range from upbeat to lethargic, and Peach Pit nails both sides of the spectrum. The fourth track, “Pepsi on the House,” is undoubtedly the most energetic cut on the album. It features a driving beat from Pascuzzi, as well as more playful lines from Smith. Conversely, the eighth track, “Last Days of Lonesome,” sounds like it belongs on a bedroom pop album. The song has an almost eerie melody due to Smith’s vocal falls and memorable chorus. Smith isn’t afraid to let notes bend out of tune momentarily before returning back to pitch, demonstrating his vocal chops.

Reflection on past relationships is a common topic in Peach Pit songs, but the lyrics on From 2 to 3 are more emotionally mature compared to past tracks. Throughout the album, Smith dissects his feelings regarding former flames. On “2015,” Smith wonders about going back to a past lover and describes his inability to move on from the past. With dramatic lines such as “Without you, there’d be no color / There’d be no sound,” Smith pulls listeners into an exploration of his dependency on a person he is no longer in a relationship with.

Continuing the theme of regret concerning past relationships, the track “Look Out!” describes the difficulty of resisting the temptation to go back to an ex. The struggle and subsequent aftermath of breakups seem to be the main theme of the album, and the wide array of emotions associated with moving on are on full display. This mood is supported by the nostalgic-sounding instrumentals and Vanderkooy’s smooth lead guitar playing.

The album is closed by the title track, which continues the themes of former love and regret over a slow and hypnotic instrumental. Smith pleads with a former lover to either leave him alone or get back with him, as he is unable to move on from her. The song closes with a lush instrumental outro that unexpectedly lands on a high note, literally. This uplifting ending represents newfound optimism and the possibility of moving on from the past.

The album cover depicts the four members of the band walking out of the darkness into a bright doorway, which fits nicely with the themes of the album. Through their matured lyrics and carefully orchestrated instrumentals, Peach Pit has demonstrated that they are ready to move on from their past work into a more mature musical space.