Michigan-based progressive rock band Greta Van Fleet teased at their debut full-length album, “Anthem of the Peaceful Army,” with the single, “Watching Over.” Greta Van Fleet started as a neighborhood classic rock style band and got their big break by performing at Coachella in summer of 2018.
The band released this single on Sept. 6 and have been hinting at the new album continuously over summer. Greta Van Fleet has advertised the release by sending personalized letters to their fans with poems and the date of the release before being officially announced. The full debut album will be released Oct. 19.
Greta Van Fleet consists of two twins, Josh and Jake Kiszka, at 22, their younger brother, Sam Kiszka, at 19, and their high school friend Danny Wagner, at 18. They have already amassed over 24 million views on YouTube and 263.7 thousand followers on Instagram.
“Watching Over” explores a more psychedelic sound than the band has shown before. Front man Josh Kiszka howls lyrics of transcendental sentiment in comparison to their more popular tracks, such as, “Highway Tune.” The instrumentals are slow, dreamy and progress with the vocals. Guitarist Jake Kiszka makes his playing prominent in this track, while the drumming performed by Danny Wagner fades and is nearly insignificant, similarly to the bass/keys.
Contrary to the popular opinion that Greta Van Fleet is essentially an unsustainable Led Zeppelin cover band, “Watching Over” displays that the band is most likely trying to branch away from their Zeppelin-inspired sound, rather trying to find their own niche of psychedelic and progressive rock. Greta Van Fleet has grown a huge following at such a young age based off of their refreshing bluesy, progressive rock sound that the music industry lacks in 2018. The band is a sigh of relief for rock fans who are tired of overplayed nu-metal, radio-tier rock music.
With that being said, “Watching Over” was not what was expected of the new album. The track is slightly lackadaisical and not instrumentally enticing enough to make the listener play the song on repeat or make it a favorite. “Watching Over” contrasts from their other music too much. Fans listen to Greta Van Fleet for a fresh take on classic rock music with powerhouse vocals, catchy drumming and memorable riffs. This track did not completely deliver with those standards in mind.
Hopes are still high for “Anthem of the Peaceful Army,” as Greta Van Fleet has proven themselves with previous singles such as “Lover, Leaver (Taker, Believer),” which will be officially released on the new album, and “Highway Tune,” which is the band’s most popular song. Fans and music lovers can expect to see Greta Van Fleet’s style evolve and get more and more experimental throughout their youth and music career.