Postcards are Julia Sbara: Lead vocals, guitar, synth, organ, and bass synth. Marwan Tohma: guitar, bass and backing vocals. Pascal Semerdjian: drums, sampler, bass synth and backing vocals. A dream pop trio formed in Beirut, Lebanon in 2012 self described as “hushed vocals floating over expansive soundscapes that shift between harsh noises and dreamy atmospheres.” Their new album A Good Soldier was released January 3, 2020. After you push play if you think you’re going to do anything else but listen to this album-you’re wrong.
The opening song “Dead End” is nothing short of an alarm call to your attention. Dark and tragic guitar riffs roll like a storm behind floating Julee Cruise-esque vocals telling this mysterious story:
I walk in the black of the night
The street lights above my house no longer shine
I walk into the dark
I watch as fish come through my door,
Swimming out my windows
And the world slides through my head like waterJTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGVlpWcDJ6U3B4SWclMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvdyUzRCUyMmFjY2VsZXJvbWV0ZXIlM0IlMjBhdXRvcGxheSUzQiUyMGVuY3J5cHRlZC1tZWRpYSUzQiUyMGd5cm9zY29wZSUzQiUyMHBpY3R1cmUtaW4tcGljdHVyZSUyMiUyMGFsbG93ZnVsbHNjcmVlbiUzRSUzQyUyRmlmcmFtZSUzRQ==“Fossilized”, the second song on the album, is where they really shine for me. Still dreamy but a bit brighter and crisp. Huge, vibrating guitars and the male and female harmonies continuously building up to an all out auralgasm reminiscent of Slowdive. The song is just shy of 4 minutes but I always wish songs like this went on forever.JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGdmtvRVVwQ1h1UEElMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvdyUzRCUyMmFjY2VsZXJvbWV0ZXIlM0IlMjBhdXRvcGxheSUzQiUyMGVuY3J5cHRlZC1tZWRpYSUzQiUyMGd5cm9zY29wZSUzQiUyMHBpY3R1cmUtaW4tcGljdHVyZSUyMiUyMGFsbG93ZnVsbHNjcmVlbiUzRSUzQyUyRmlmcmFtZSUzRQ==The mid-album lullaby, “Lights Out”, starts simply. Paints a picture of a child, perhaps a secret witness to an undesirable situation. The song builds layer upon layer, seeming to mirror the growth of the child and the situation.
I hoped you’d leave
Not watch you grieve
And maybe someday you will know
Maybe someday when I’m old
I, too, can seeJTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGcklELU9DZ25zMHclMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvdyUzRCUyMmFjY2VsZXJvbWV0ZXIlM0IlMjBhdXRvcGxheSUzQiUyMGVuY3J5cHRlZC1tZWRpYSUzQiUyMGd5cm9zY29wZSUzQiUyMHBpY3R1cmUtaW4tcGljdHVyZSUyMiUyMGFsbG93ZnVsbHNjcmVlbiUzRSUzQyUyRmlmcmFtZSUzRQ==Then there’s this catchy little ear worm….JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGeWNsQ2s2X2xjTDglMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvdyUzRCUyMmFjY2VsZXJvbWV0ZXIlM0IlMjBhdXRvcGxheSUzQiUyMGVuY3J5cHRlZC1tZWRpYSUzQiUyMGd5cm9zY29wZSUzQiUyMHBpY3R1cmUtaW4tcGljdHVyZSUyMiUyMGFsbG93ZnVsbHNjcmVlbiUzRSUzQyUyRmlmcmFtZSUzRQ==This album has all these yummy nods to bands like Julee Cruise, Slowdive, and even The Pixies. As I have been listening to this album I thought it sounded like something you might call “surf pop”, if there was such a thing. To my surprise, not only is there Surf Pop but there is also a genre called Indie Surf. After checking out a couple of those bands I would not categorize Postcards in that genre but maybe we could call it Surf Gaze? No matter what you call it, this album is full of great songs and when I listen to it I feel like life is good.
You can buy their album at postcardsmusic.comDanielle Hennes
Big Sonic Heaven Radio Contributing Writer
Big Sonic Heaven is a 24/7 Internet radio station dedicated to the ethereal sounds of shoegaze, dream pop, post-punk, trip-hop, etc. Listen to the artists featured on the blog and discover more by downloading the app for iPhone and Android or listen at bigsonicheaven.com.
Written by: Danielle Hennes
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