Now Playing: Peter Bjorn and John
Originally formed in 1999, Peter Bjorn and John’s latest album is music to the ears of their indie music devotees. After hooking the U.S. music scene in 2007 with “Writer’s Block” and the whistle-centric single “Young Folks,” the Stockholm-based band stretched beyond their indie rock popularity. They experimented with ’80s synthpop, West African pop, and hip-hop beats on 2009’s Living Thing, issuing gems like “It Don’t Move Me” and “Nothing To Worry About.”
When the time came for their 2011 album Gimme Some, the band, who had self-produced their albums up to this point, decided to reach out to producer Per Sunding. The goal? To make something that represented who they were purely as musicians. “The process was, for them, to feel safe in letting go of having their producers’ ears on while playing,” says Sunding in part one of the band’s YouTube documentary, Gimme Some Movie. The result, as can be heard in PB&J’s latest single “Second Chance,” is a lot punky, a little bit funky, and brazenly low-fi.
Still, cherished habits never sit on the shelf long enough to collect dust. The band launched their own record label, Ingrid, this past summer because, as PB&J’s Björn Yttling puts it, “If you want it done, do it yourself. Other labels are just not that good.”
Named after the late actress Ingrid Bergman for the fact that it is also Stockholm-born, “very attractive and creates great art,” the label gives PB&J the space to create and experiment as they wish. Albums they produce “could be anything we like,” says Yttling. “Whatever we feel like getting out there. No limits, baby.”
In the meantime, Yttling looks forward to visiting the San Diego coastline when the tour makes a stop at the Belly Up on Sept. 30. “I tried surfing a couple times, and love it,” he shares. “That would be something to write home about.”