Have you met ALBERT?
ALBERT are an indie-pop band from Malmö in the south of Sweden. The band formed in 2011 and have been working together ever since. Today is the official release of their debut, self-titled album. Ahead of the release, Mr. Wolf sat down with the band's lead singer, Wallentin, to enjoy a mid-morning coffee and get the inside news on the ALBERT’s plans for the future.
ALBERT started life as a trio featuring Wallentin Richardsson, Erik Sunding, and Niklas Björk. David Scholander was the fourth and final member to join the group in 2011. Walletin met him when they were working together in the recording studio and they quickly decided to team up.
Over the next two years, the band worked on writing and arranging songs for their debut album. The inspiration behind the album was simple: to produce something raw, something uncomplicated. However, achieving this simple idea was easier said than done. Wallentin says, “We’re basically all perfectionists, so even though we aim for rawness we tend to keep tinkering with a song until it reaches a point where it is quite thoroughly worked.”
To tackle this problem ALBERT decided to take their work away from the usual surroundings – a disused textiles factory in the industrial sector of Malmö – and into the Swedish countryside. Here, they rented a space and brought on board one of their favourite producers, Mathias Oldén, and recorded the entire album over just four days. The challenge was to cram over two years of work into less than a week of studio time. The result is an album that avoids slick production, and retains the rawness originally intended by the band.
On the sound and style of their music, Wallentin cites The National and Death Cab for Cutie as being two of his, and the band’s, biggest musical influences. These influences are definitely present in their music, but are managed in a playful and often delightful way.
On his personal musical inspiration, Wallentin says, “I can’t not make music. For me, it’s really automatic – it’s part of what I am. It’s not out habit, but more like out of need. When I was a kid I played soccer. I wanted to be a professional so I went out and practiced every single day. Then I found this music thing. So I think I’ll keep doing it every day until it gets boring. It’s the best way to spend my time right now.”
After the release of their debut album, ALBERT are hoping to fill their schedule with live shows, and appearances at festivals. Despite the difficult logistics of touring in Sweden, they are also hoping to return to Gothenburg and other cities in the coming months. So keep your ear to the ground, ALBERT may soon be coming to a city near you.