Boston Herald Review

Jed Gottlieb Saturday, March 03, 2018
Most songwriters peak. Few fans think Bob Dylan improved after “Blood on the Tracks.” Nobody champions Bruce Springsteen’s “Wrecking Ball” over “Born to Run.” But subtract the nostalgia you feel for Buffalo Tom’s “Let Me Come Over” and you’ll likely find the new album “Quiet and Peace” as great as anything the band has done — don’t doubt my claim until you have listened to the quintessential Buffalo Tom track “Lonely Fast and Deep.”

The Boston trio of singer-guitarist Bill Janovitz, singer-bassist Chris Colbourn and drummer Tom Maginnis have nothing to prove. The guys will never make the band a full-time gig again — their ninth album comes after a seven-year break. Maybe it’s this freedom that allows them to write clear-eyed, adult rock ’n’ roll. (Note: This is not meant as a pejorative.)

They fill “Quiet and Peace” with tight rock about complex relationships. “Roman Cars” captures something between mature and playful, an aesthetic between the Kinks and R.E.M. “In the Ice” features a melody and melancholy that echoes Janovitz’s deeply underrated solo album “Walt Whitman Mall.” Flirting with folk, punk and rock drones, the band sounds endlessly comfortable with its art.

Buffalo Tom returns to the Paradise on April 20.