ALBUM REVIEW: Postiljonen – Skyer

Skyer artwork
Skyer artwork

Screen Shot 2013-07-14 at 11.36.33 AM

ARTIST Postiljonen

ALBUM Skyer

LABEL Best Fit Recordings

RELEASE DATE 22.7.2013

8.8 | 10

The debut album from Postiljonen, the Stockholm, Sweden three-piece responsible for one of the year’s best singles, is a densely packed and confident debut, asserting Postiljonen as one of the better freshmen acts of 2013.

When “Supreme” premiered earlier this year, it catapulted Mia Bøe, Daniel Sjörs and Joel Nyström Holm’s debut as Postiljonen, Skyer, to one of the year’s most anticipated releases. That track tapped into the same musical ground explored by M83 on the excellent 2011 album Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming, with soaring synths and a towering chorus primed for the festival circuit. The band made good on their initial promise by crafting a fully conceptualized album without sounding calculated or derivative.

Postiljonen begins the album with a two minute “Intro,” and much like alt-J and The xx before, their “Intro” track works as an abstract, highlighting the key points that are further explored during the ensuing nine tracks. Highly atmospheric, the intro also features saxophone that features prominently on the record. “Help” is an utterly gorgeous song, with Mia Bøe’s smoke-filled vocals acting as a perfect companion to the dense yet not overcrowded production. As synthesizers explode during the chorus, Bøe stumbles upon a beautiful melody that will stick with you for days.

“We Raise Our Hearts” has an almost spiritual feel to it, while “On The Run” could very well have been featured in the movie Drive. The album closes with the glorious one-two punch of “All That We Had Is Lost” and “Atlantis.” Bøe’s ability to elongate the lyrics, wringing out all the nourishment they can provide, gives “Lost” an even more devastating feel, while “Atlantis” begins where “Midnight City” climaxed, hitting us with an emphatic saxophone right off the bat. While those who grew up in the 90s will forever slightly cringe at a saxophone solo (thanks, 90s sitcoms!), Postiljonen is able to make it work, as if they unearthed an artifact long thought to be extinct.

Through the shear beauty of the band’s work, there’s an emotional resonance to this music that goes unrivaled amongst the year’s best albums. Skyer can find you speeding down the interstate with the windows down or holed up in your room writing bad poetry (or in my case, bad reviews). Whether the songs bring about tears of joy or tears of sorrow, that’s a matter for you to decide.

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