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The Postmarks|Memoirs at the End of the World

Memoirs at the End of the World

The Postmarks

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The Postmarks' self-titled debut album had a quiet beauty that was founded in the trio's love of Burt Bacharach, bossa nova, and the baroque pop sounds of late-'60s bands like the Left Banke. Centered on the whispered yet powerful vocals of Tim Yehezkely, the album had a restrained, rainy-day charm that made it one of the best pop albums of 2007. After an album of covers in 2008 (By-the-Numbers), the band came back in 2009 with a decidedly different-sounding album. Memoirs at the End of the World is still centered on Yehezkely's lovely vocals, but instead of hazy, subtle arrangements, the group has gone all-out into the world of film music. They've traded the Bacharach for John Barry, the Astrud Gilberto for Shirley Bassey. The songs are tricked out in huge-sounding string sections, bombastic horns, atmospheric electronics, and all sorts of sounds you might hear in film scores from the 1960s. It's an approach that is quite off-putting at first, especially if you were hoping for an album that sounded similar to the debut. Getting past the initial shock, though, some things become clear. The group still writes wonderfully melancholic ("No One Said This Would Be Easy," "I'm in Deep") and irresistibly catchy ("All You Ever Wanted," "Go Jetsetter") songs. Yehezkely sounds great as the chanteuse standing in the middle of the swirling cinematic setting, alternately breaking hearts and charming the pants off you with ease. Most importantly, though, is the realization that the Postmarks are darn good at writing, playing, arranging, and producing atmospheric film music. They've obviously absorbed lots of classic scores and studied great composers like Henry Mancini, John Barry, Lalo Schifrin, and Roy Budd. The music they've created here is clearly in debt to the sounds those men made, but remains a Postmarks product due to one simple fact: none of the aforementioned composers could have written pop songs as breezy and nonchalant as those found on Memoirs. There is an easy grace at the middle of their sound that is at odds with soundtrack music, an indie pop core that keeps the album from being overdone or fussy. Most of the credit has to go to Yehezkely's intimate vocals and restrained lyrics; she keeps things grounded even when the harpsichords, strings, and horns threaten to carry the songs off. Even though the album may be enough of a stretch that it could chase away many of the band's fans, if you give it a chance, Memoirs at the End of the World is a completely successful melding of the Postmarks' autumnal sweetness with the elevated drama and epic nature of film scores.
© Tim Sendra /TiVo

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Memoirs at the End of the World

The Postmarks

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1
No One Said This Would Be Easy
00:03:33

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

2
My Lucky Charm
00:04:33

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

3
Thorn In Your Side
00:03:29

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

4
Don't Know Till You Try
00:03:08

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

5
All You Ever Wanted
00:05:01

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

6
Run Away Love
00:01:04

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

7
For Better...Or Worse?
00:03:19

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

8
I'm In Deep
00:03:48

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

9
Thorn In Your Side (Reprise)
00:01:33

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

10
Go Jetsetter
00:03:01

Wilkins, Composer - Moll, Composer - The Postmarks, MainArtist - Yeheskely, Composer

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

11
Theme From "Memoirs"
00:02:14

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

12
The Girl From Algenib
00:06:17

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

13
Gone
00:04:30

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

14
The End Of The World
00:01:24

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

15
Si Tu Veux Mon Coeur
00:04:10

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

16
My Lucky Charm (Joy Zipper Remix)
00:05:53

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

17
My Lucky Charm [Tahiti 80 Remix]
00:02:54

Wilkins, Composer - Moll, Composer - The Postmarks, MainArtist - Yeheskely, Composer

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2010 Unfiltered Records

18
Go Jetsetter (James Iha Remix)
00:03:31

The Postmarks, MainArtist

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2009 Unfiltered Records

19
Go Jetsetter
00:04:11

Wilkins, Composer - Moll, Composer - The Postmarks, MainArtist - Yeheskely, Composer

© 2010 Unfiltered Records ℗ 2010 Unfiltered Records

Album Description

The Postmarks' self-titled debut album had a quiet beauty that was founded in the trio's love of Burt Bacharach, bossa nova, and the baroque pop sounds of late-'60s bands like the Left Banke. Centered on the whispered yet powerful vocals of Tim Yehezkely, the album had a restrained, rainy-day charm that made it one of the best pop albums of 2007. After an album of covers in 2008 (By-the-Numbers), the band came back in 2009 with a decidedly different-sounding album. Memoirs at the End of the World is still centered on Yehezkely's lovely vocals, but instead of hazy, subtle arrangements, the group has gone all-out into the world of film music. They've traded the Bacharach for John Barry, the Astrud Gilberto for Shirley Bassey. The songs are tricked out in huge-sounding string sections, bombastic horns, atmospheric electronics, and all sorts of sounds you might hear in film scores from the 1960s. It's an approach that is quite off-putting at first, especially if you were hoping for an album that sounded similar to the debut. Getting past the initial shock, though, some things become clear. The group still writes wonderfully melancholic ("No One Said This Would Be Easy," "I'm in Deep") and irresistibly catchy ("All You Ever Wanted," "Go Jetsetter") songs. Yehezkely sounds great as the chanteuse standing in the middle of the swirling cinematic setting, alternately breaking hearts and charming the pants off you with ease. Most importantly, though, is the realization that the Postmarks are darn good at writing, playing, arranging, and producing atmospheric film music. They've obviously absorbed lots of classic scores and studied great composers like Henry Mancini, John Barry, Lalo Schifrin, and Roy Budd. The music they've created here is clearly in debt to the sounds those men made, but remains a Postmarks product due to one simple fact: none of the aforementioned composers could have written pop songs as breezy and nonchalant as those found on Memoirs. There is an easy grace at the middle of their sound that is at odds with soundtrack music, an indie pop core that keeps the album from being overdone or fussy. Most of the credit has to go to Yehezkely's intimate vocals and restrained lyrics; she keeps things grounded even when the harpsichords, strings, and horns threaten to carry the songs off. Even though the album may be enough of a stretch that it could chase away many of the band's fans, if you give it a chance, Memoirs at the End of the World is a completely successful melding of the Postmarks' autumnal sweetness with the elevated drama and epic nature of film scores.
© Tim Sendra /TiVo

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By The Postmarks

Memoirs At The End Of The World

The Postmarks

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