WICKED PEACE: Delightfully Out-of-Place Beards, bourbon, and southern drawls rule the Bluegrass State, as rootsy singer-songwriters enthrall audiences with authentic tales of hard livin' and heartbreak, with little more than a well-worn acoustic guitar and flannel shirt. So, it’s a considerable jolt when Wicked Peace kicks down the door with wild abandon, armed with ukuleles, pop-rock hooks, and a whole lot of energy. Breathing fresh air into the Kentucky music scene, Wicked Peace distills its members disparate influences and Appalachian background into a singular sound that subverts expectations and defies easy categorization, zig-zagging between power pop and Americana, detouring anywhere a song takes them along the way. In 2013, frontman Tanner Blevins and guitarist Patrick Brumback shared a Morehead State dorm room hallway and musical dreams. With Tanner’s older sister/songwriter Amanda on board, the band quickly self-released 2014’s charmingly-DIY debut Conclusions, featuring personal, scornful laments of love lost, softened only by the abundant loose acousti-pop at play that would become their template moving forward. They followed this up with 2015’s self- effacingly titled Growing Pain. The band then traveled down to Music City to cut the fullest realization of their musical visions yet: The Edge EP, recorded at Blackbird Studio. 2018 saw a series of singles featuring an evolved sound and lyricism, the culmination of years of growth: “All of Me,” “Halfway,” “New Addiction,” and “Tubesox.” With the addition of powerhouse rhythm players Matt Holleran (drums) and Jard Davis (bass) to the lineup and a year’s worth of new songs, videos, and shows, kicked off by the self-producedTHE PORTLAND EP, the best is yet to come for the goof-rock wizards of Wicked Peace.