Harrison Koisser wants you to swear to give a fuck about mental health issues in young people.
Emerging from a quiet period with new song, ‘From Under Liquid Glass’ Peace are urging us to talk and be honest about mental health, in support of research-based charity MQ.
As the front man of the ever charismatic, indie pop darlings; Peace, Harry recalls finding himself falling victim to circuity in making and touring records that we grew to adore. Away from making music, he says; “during the year I spent with myself and the guys out in the woods, I discovered that I was actually real and all those soft things that I’d parked when we flew off in 2012 were still there waiting upon my return.”
Because let’s face it, Peace have never failed to deliver the sugar rush of pop that remedies the trials and tribulations of being a teenager biting their nails just desperate for a night with friends and a couple of tinnies. Their numbers taught us to dance like nobody was watching, and to sing as though our voices could reach the sky. They ripped apart capitalism in a tongue-in-cheek manner and masculine expectations with a wry smile. Peace are the band that throw their arms around anybody and embrace who they really are.
“I love that Peace has been a big hot firecracker for people left out in the cold, and everything I’ve written has been so real.” Harry explains, “but I had to face up to the fact that I wasn’t gonna be the 24/7 shiny one. No one is.”
Simply unable to accept that he had been placed on a pedestal of positivity, a caricature of the optimistic frontman, Harry recently wrote the song to set the record straight, and again – knocked down the barriers of hiding who you are.
‘From Under Liquid Glass’ explores the very notion of unintentionally contradicting yourself. For him, it was an obligation to talk to the listeners and to himself. Lyrically, it’s Peace’s most honest work to date. Each line is poignant and precise, biting down on how it feels to live with mental health issues. Writing it was a form of liberation, and there was little apprehension about allowing the world to hear it.
“It felt quite groovy being quite unapologetic and confident in a song about something I’m quite shy and scared about in real life.” Harry explains, “Music can be quite empowering when it wants to be. I hope that people who relate to the song can take some of that power for themselves also.”
The song faces its fears with every beat and every word. “Basically my songwriting ability was my weapon of choice in that particular battle.
“I’ll always see contributing a piece of art to the universe as a good thing and the idea that something good could come out of a bad moment felt like getting a punch in at the end of a punishing round.”
‘From Under Liquid Glass’ has been released to support MQ Mental Health, the charity takes a research based approach to tackling mental health issues. The campaign is urging fans to take swearing selfies as they swear to give a fuck about mental illness in young people.
“Suffering from mental health issues can be so isolating and terrifying. I like the idea of living in a culture where whatever you’re going through, you don’t feel alone and can be understood and treated effectively.” Harry explains, the idea behind the social media campaign confirms the idea of safety in numbers and fast growing awareness. “I really hope MQ can help start to identify mental health issues earlier and find new ways of prevention and treatment which ultimately provide more answers. That would be great outcome.”
Euphoria washes over the track in a way that is almost blissful, moving like a free-flowing river, and it happened by accident. “Originally the song was just an acoustic guitar and vocal. In fact we almost released the demo because I’d recorded it immediately after writing the song. It felt quite special.” When the song made its way into the studio, their producer clicked the talkback from the control room and said “Boycie, big beats are the best…” He recalls how Dom came in with the chorus two beat and the band essentially jammed out the rest, with Harry calling out the chords. “It felt really right for Peace, everyone colouring it in, so we recorded this version and went with it.”
Enlisting the help of friend, Jonnie Craig, to direct the video, the video sees Harry finding escapism by using bath water. Finding moments of haven laying in the bath and on the grass, the visuals are simple and direct, forcing a viewer to listen to every word. And to not let them slip by.
Warmed by the responses that the track has received, Harry reiterates; “Music is so so so powerful and I think we should all respect the magic that can be arranged between the two earphones.”
Peace continue to spread their magic of unforgettable pop songs with a wholesome middle, far and wide. They continue to lend a hand when they’re needed most. As for other causes of self care, may Harry suggest; “Getting with the power of nature and all its greenness. Making sure you get a good amount of time with it. There is a lot of goodness left in the world.”
Words by Tanyel Gumushan