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Postiljonen “Skyer” – Album Review

Best Fit Recordings (2013)

Sampled by Christina Aguilera, used as the soundtrack to countless commercials and featured prominently in everything from the pilot of fantasy reboot Beauty & The Beast to the finale of hipster drama How To Make It In America, the euphoric dream-pop of M83’s “Midnight City” has become so ubiquitous that it now appears to have inspired a tribute record.

Indeed, there’s little getting away from the fact that the majority of Skyer, the debut album from Swedish trio Postiljonen, Is hugely indebted to the French quintet’s signature hit. Opener “Intro” professes a similar love of smooth jazz with the slickest saxophone solo this side of George Michael’s “Careless Whisper,” lead single “Atlantis” sticks rigidly to the formula of washed-out synths and stadium-sized beats, while Mia Boe’s hushed ethereal tones bear more than a passing resemblance to Anthony Gonzalez’s, particularly on the gorgeous slow-dance electro of “Help.”

Of course, had Skyer arrived just a few years earlier, then Postiljonen would no doubt have been declared as the saviours of reverb-drenched synth-pop. But as consistently stunning as the record is, it’s difficult to give the group too much credit when they’ve essentially borrowed their sound wholesale from another tried-and-tested source.

To be fair, there are a few occasions when Postiljonen look beyond their overwhelmingly obvious inspiration. “Plastic Panorama” sounds like a Balearic chill-out remix of a long-lost Cocteau Twins classic, albeit one with several random quotes from The Princess Bride thrown in. “Rivers” combines the booming beats of a Ryan Tedder-penned power ballad with some shoegazing atmospherics and a repeated mantra of “the truth shall set you free.’”“All That We Had Is Lost” turns the uplifting soul-pop of Whitney Houston’s “How Will I Know” into a gorgeously melancholic slice of slow-motion house.

Should Postiljonen continue to deviate from their well-worn formula, then their next record could be very special indeed. But it’s hard to judge Skyer as anything other than an impressive pastiche.

3.5 / 5 stars     

About the Author


Jon O'Brien's love of music began as a six-year-old after becoming bizarrely transfixed with the 80s poodle rock of Heart, Europe and Def Leppard. Switching his attention to pop icon Michael Jackson, he then became addicted to the UK Top 40, becoming a rather pointless walking Wikipedia of chart positions in the process. Driving his poor neighbors up the wall while learning to play the drums as a teen, he toyed with the idea of becoming a musician, but in studying Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, he realized heÕd rather write about music than perform it. Since then, he's written thousands of reviews and biographies on everything from bubblegum pop to death metal, but electronica remains his main passion, with everything from Aphex Twin to Zero 7 in his spare room-consuming record collection. Jon resides in northwest England near Liverpool.

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Posted in: Album Reviews, Electronic Music