Peter Bjorn and John broke lengthy hiatus with Breakin’ Point


“I think we’ve always naturally wrote pretty catchy songs,” says “Young Folks” singer Peter Morén.

Peter Bjorn and John broke their 5-year hiatus with the release of Breakin’ Point, the Swedish trio’s seventh studio album and their first since 2011’s Gimme Some.

An absence like that can feel like an eternity in the music world, and a comeback can be a frightening, risky gamble for just about any recording artist.

“Especially in this age,” says frontman Peter Morén.

“People easily become restless and are quickly onto something else and something new.”

But the guys aren’t shaken by the thought of that.

“It would be scary if we were thinking that we have to make another big hit, but we don’t think like that,” he says.

Peter is referring to the band’s 2006 breakthrough single “Young Folks,” that infectious earworm with the whistling hook that kind of sounds like the “Oriental Riff” and likely just went off in your head.

Released exactly 10 years ago this August, “Young Folks” sold over 200,000 copies in the UK alone and became a worldwide hit that put these three Swedes on the map.

“We never expected that, especially being as obscure as we were at the time,” Peter says. “We were totally unknown before 2006, but have been together since 1999. We put out two albums before ‘Young Folks’ was released as the lead single off our album Writer’s Block. We were not a new band.”

Things have changed a lot since they banded together at the dawn of the new millennium.

“We can live off our music now. That’s one nice change,” Peters laughs. “Our music has changed a lot too over time, but we’ll always be the band that our fans have come to know. The way we make music together hasn’t changed.”

But, with whom they make music has.

When the time came to record Breakin’ Point, the three looked for outside collaborators for the first time ever, and recruited a team of big-time producers.

Emile Haynie (who has worked with Eminem, Kanye West and Lana Del Rey), Greg Kurstin (who collaborated with P!nk, Beck, Ellie Goulding, Kelly Clarkson, Sia and Tegan and Sara), Patrik Berger (recognized for working with Charli XCX, Icona Pop, Robyn and Santigold), Paul Epworth (whose production and writing credits include U2, Adele, Bruno Mars, Coldplay, Florence + the Machine and Paul McCartney) and Pontus Winnberg (a hit-maker for Madonna, Britney Spears, Jennifer Lopez, Katy Perry and Kylie Minogue) were all hired hands involved in the making of Breakin’ Point.

The final product is a pack of indie pop firecrackers. The 12 radio ready tracks have a physique fit enough to potentially climb the charts.

“We’ve never tried to deliberately write hits though. We’ve always naturally wrote pretty catchy songs,” he laughs.

Breakin’ Point is a strong effort with a fair amount of gems and standout tunes like “Between The Lines.” Whether or not Peter, Bjorn and John will strike gold the way they did with “Young Folks” remains to be seen, but this is the closest they’ve come to that brilliance in a decade. Still, they may never experience that kind of mainstream success again, and should that be, Peter says the band is OK with that.

“If we’re a mainstream one hit wonder, that’s good and fine with us.”

The guys are simply content with the size of their celebrity and fame, and feel a sense of satisfaction when they perform in night clubs and theatres around the world.

“We don’t have the urge to get bigger,” Peter says. “And we don’t need to play for bigger audiences, we’re quite pleased with the amount of fans who come out to see us.”

Peter Bjorn and John play Mod Club in Toronto on Tuesday, July 5, Ottawa’s Bluesfest on Thursday, July 7, the Montreal International Jazz Festival on Friday, July 8 at Club Soda and Quebec City’s Festival d’Été on Saturday, July 9. See more tour dates below.

The band’s new album Breakin’ Point is available on iTunes now. For news and updates, follow them on twitter and facebook.

July 5 – Mod Club – Toronto, ON
July 7 – Ottawa Bluesfest – Ottawa, ON
July 8 – Montreal International Jazz Festival – Montreal, Canada
July 9 – Festival d’Été de Québec – Québec City, Canada
July 20 – Metro Theatre – Sydney, Australia
July 21 – The Corner – Melbourne, Australia
July 22 – Splendour In The Grass – Byron Bay, Australia
August 27 – FYF Festival – Los Angeles, CA
August 28 – Revolution Hall – Portland, OR
August 30 – Commodore – Vancouver, BC
August 31 – Neptune – Seattle, WA
September 1 – Fillmore – San Francisco, CA
September 17  – Music Farm – Charleston, SC
September 19 –  Jefferson Theater – Charlottesville, VA
September 20 – College Street Music Hall – New Haven, CT
September 21 –Webster Hall – New York, NY
September 23 – Trocadero – Philadelphia, PA
September 24 – Lincoln Theatre – Washington, DC
September 25 – Royale Ballroom – Boston, MA

Posted by on Jul 5 2016. Filed under Interviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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