Great Rock Albums of 1988: Big Country- Peace In Our Time

It’s my Swiss cheese memory again. I had no memory that Big Country had put out an album in 1988, which was bizarre because I was living in London at the time and “Peace in Our Time” went to number nine in the UK charts. Fortunately, a follower named Damien saved my bacon by emailing me asking I include the album in my 1988 posts. So, thank you Damien! Listening to the album, I am glad I followed his suggestion.

What a paradox the opening track, “King of Emotion” is. The song just missed the top ten in both the US and UK charts but that’s not important. What is important is that it begins with a drum beat which reminds me of the Grand Funk Railroad classic, “We’re An American Band.” Some sections of the song sound like Spandau Ballet trying to go hard rock. We know they couldn’t but with Big Country, there is no need as this turns out to be a pretty viable commercial rock tune.

The next four tracks are good solid tracks but as a whole, not mind blowing. The second single, “Broken Heart,” has a background guitar which would have made The Edge jealous. What Big Country accomplish is their blend of Celtic folk rock, hard rock and elements of new wave and it’s all done with great success. All of those songs have a catchy melody backed up by the power chords of a guitar and each one is quite enjoyable in its own right. Saying that, I like the intros of tracks three and four, the progressive sound of “From Here to Eternity” and the acoustic intro on “Everything I Need.” Both are hauntingly catchy.

Starting the swing to more harder rock in the second half of the album is the title track which is also the hidden gem of the album. It was released as a single but barely cracked the top 40 in the UK. So for me, having no memory of the song, it qualifies as a hidden gem. I just love the way the guitar kicks in to start things off and the U2 meets Guns N Roses guitar sound in the background just rocks. Okay, there are no blistering solos but there’s a guitar riff in the middle which is definitely ear catching.

Tracks seven through ten are sort of like those of two to five, only there seems to be a definite harder rock feel to them. Still, the melodies behind the songs are no less catchy and will have you dancing around the kitchen if you aren’t careful. “River of Hope” really rocks with the guitars and drums. Then just to change things up is the ballad, “In This Place.” It starts off as a soft piano ballad but the guitars come in and give it a bit more kick. “I Could Be Happy Here” ends the album in the right frame of mind and I do like the guitar hooks as it fades out.

Track Listing:

  1. King of Emotion
  2. Broken Heart (Thirteen Valleys)
  3. Thousand Yard Stare
  4. From Here to Eternity
  5. Everything I Need
  6. Peace In Our Time
  7. Time for Leaving
  8. River of Hope
  9. In This Place
  10. I Could Be Happy Here
Big Country

Stuart Adamson- guitar, vocals, piano, e-bow

Mark Brzezicki- drums, percussion

Tony Butler- bass, vocals, guitar

Bruce Watson- guitar, harmonica, e-bow, mandolin, sitar, vocals

“Peace in Our Time” was near fatal miss for me back in 1988. Fortunately, thanks to Damien and the Tubes of You, I got to appreciate what a great album it is.

Next post: Tina Turner- Tina Live in Europe

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

To sign the petition to have Bruce Dickinson knighted, click the link: https://www.change.org/p/special-honours-committees-for-knighthoods-a-knighthood-for-bruce-dickinson

6 Responses to “Great Rock Albums of 1988: Big Country- Peace In Our Time”

  1. Id entirely forgotten about Big Country but in the days when I used to get free albums on a newspaper I remember being surprisingly impressed by one of their efforts. Dunno which one, may have been a Best Of or whatevs but it was quite anthemic. Been lost in one of my many moves – as has Bo Hansen’s mesmeric Lord of the Rings.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I only know In a Big Country and that is it. Never followed them outside of that video on MTV

    Liked by 1 person

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