Two years in the making, "Postcards From Nowhere" is the fourth album from The Leano – a duo made up of Arji Manuelpillai and Ben Moore. Their musical style is an eclectic mix of hip-hop, acoustic folk and rap, with deep lyrics and addicting melodies.
The 15-track album features spoken word pieces in the form of postcards addressed to nobody in particular, interspersed between some of their best tracks yet. The poignant lyrics (penned by Arji himself) are relatable, instilling a sense of hope in the listener, and providing comfort in the notion that none of us are alone in facing the frustrations present in today’s world.
What’s interesting about the album is that The Leano have managed to avoid creating a sense of repetition from track to track, despite the fact that there is some sort of familiarity about every song…perhaps this is why the album creates a sense of comfort. It is this consistency that makes you feel like you are listening to a story (which, by the way, spans five years according to the dates of the postcards), and not just 12 separate songs.
Some of the tracks (such as "Another Passes The Blame") deal with some pretty grim topics, but songs such as "Keep The Faith" balance it out by adding a positive motif for listeners to latch on to.
I think what makes "Postcards From Nowhere" so easy to love is that it’s very real; unlike some artists, Arji doesn’t try to claim that he can change the world himself or talk about lifestyles that only a handful of people live. Instead, he questions what the world as a whole can do to make a difference, and he voices concerns and thoughts that many of us will have had at some point or the other; his postcards from nowhere that are addressed to no-one, end up being something that anyone, anywhere can relate to.
At a time where many artists feel that overly-produced, beat-heavy music is the way forward, The Leano’s sound takes you back to a time when the focus of music was on the melody and lyrics.
It’s hard to choose just one or two picks of the album, and I can’t find even one that I can claim to dislike! "Fear" is a brilliant track; lyrically on-point and musically catchy…plus, it has a great video:
"The Circus", with its Russian folk music influences, is also one to listen out for, as are "Signs of Our Times", "Brother" and "Love Deserves Our Faith".
Introspective, thought-provoking and musically-driven, The Leano’s "Postcards From Nowhere" is an absolute joy to listen to from start to finish. 8/10