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Peter, Bjorn, and John

Who? Although Peter, Bjorn, and John may seem like an overnight indie blog sensation, the Stockholm-based act has actually been playing together for the past eight years. The Scandinavian three-piece — guitarist Peter Moren, bassist-keyboardist Bjorn Yttling, and drummer John Eriksson — released their self-titled debut in 2002, followed by 2005’s Falling Out. Their self-produced third effort, Writer’s Block, features ’60s-inspired power pop and finds PB&J sharing songwriting as well as vocal duties for the first time. The album has been picked up by Almost Gold Recordings as the label’s first release.

What’s the Deal? Writer’s Block is a lo-fi and lovestruck affair, topped with breezy whistles and bedroom vocals. Taking notes from influences like the New Pornographers, Camera Obscura, and the Beta Band, Peter, Bjorn, and John create a disc that is both comforting and effortless. The stellar single “Young Folks” is a tribute to the exhilaration of a new romance and features an appearance by fellow Swede Victoria Bergsman, formerly of the Concretes. “I can tell there’s something going on / Hours seem to disappear,” the group sings languidly over a perky set of maracas. “Everyone is leaving / I’m still with you.” But with a title like Writer’s Block, it’s hard for the trio to avoid themes of angst. The disc’s enamored choruses eventually fade to reveal the tortured thoughts of a poet: “Your tongue is sharp / But I miss the taste of it,” PB&J declare in “The Chills.”

Fun Fact: The track “Young Folks” appears on an episode of the ABC medical drama Grey’s Anatomy. GINNY YANG

Now Hear This:
Peter, Bjorn, and John – “Young Folks” DOWNLOAD MP3

Talk: What kind of bread do you take with PB&J? COMMENT

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