No matter how hard I try to come up with ways of introducing Skyer without mentioning M83, it’s hard to ignore the big pink elephant in the room. Ok, so Postiljonen is hardly the only band since Anthony Gonzales epic 74 minute double album that carries lavish layers of cinematic textures and reverberated synthesizers, yet none of them have come this close of sounding like it. And while at least half of Skyer contains previously heard material, it’s first when they’re collected into one unified entity that it calls for a reaction. Across Skyer’s ten tracks I keep hearing a whole bunch of similarities, not just with M83, but also with Chromatics, the Drive Soundtrack and last but not least fellow Swedes Air France. This obvious observation isn’t necessarily a critique, but unfortunately it can serve as a bit of a distraction from the albums apparent beauty. To use an allegory from the art-world, you could say that Postiljonen created a record that resembles a collage instead of a painting.
Having said that, of all the upcoming Swedish bands and artist that emerged during the last two years, Postiljonen is amongst those that made the strongest impression on me. Single after single, starting with “På Väg Tillsammans” and “Dit Bara Drömmar Når” with both lyrics sung in Swedish, they’ve proven themselves of becoming little bit better with every subsequent release, until it all culminated with the magnificent “Atlantis” and its overuse of the saxophone that made even “Midnight City” feel rather restrained. “Atlantis” can undeniably be regarded as the highlight, but “On The Run”, “Skying High” and especially “Help” don’t trail far behind. But most importantly, I find it rather rare that an entire longplay containing as little aesthetic variation as Skyer, can manifest into something this remarkably cohesive, yet without any of the individual tracks losing its distinctive traits. Furthermore, the order in which the songs appear seems to be carefully thought of, not leaving anything to chance. So a bit surprisingly, Postiljonen isn’t the singles band that I may have assumed them to be; rather they created a proper album that don’t necessarily rely on a couple of highpoints.
To return to the art allegory; even if a collage can become a valuable piece of art, it will not go down in history as an important one. And this notion basically summarize my feelings of Postiljonen; for the moment, there are few albums that sound as good, and I’m pretty sure it earned its right to become the soundtrack of this summer, but in a couple of years’ time, Skyer won’t be remembered as anything more than just that, the soundtrack of this summer. It’s a big difference of making music that serves as influence to others, as opposed to making music influenced by others. So while, Postiljonen is getting its share of great-to-fantastic reviews (some even go as far as calling it the album of the year), it’s still worth considering if an album has a prospect of prevailing in the long run, or its lifespan is short-lived, blossoming beautifully at the moment but with a certain death in a near future. While utterly gorgeous and well crafted, Skyer is unfortunately the latter.
- Postiljonen “Atlantis” (musicalhifive.com)
- ALBUM REVIEW: Postiljonen – Skyer (okwest.wordpress.com)
- Postiljonen (betweentwospeakers.com)
- Postiljonen – Atlantis (ifoundmusic.com)
- Dear Fans of M83… (theindierocksummit.wordpress.com)
- new sound: postiljonen (70dayweekend.com)
- Atlantis – Postiljonen (surfingsaxophone.com)
- Postiljonen – Atlantis (insidetone.wordpress.com)