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Albums Of The Week: Island | Yesterday Park

The London indie-rockers are already feeling nostalgic on their sophomore album.

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Yesterday Park is an album about nostalgia, that feeling of looking back, not to one specific time or place but rather the feeling associated with the hazy blur of childhood and teenage memories,” the members of London’s Island explain. “The songs cover a lot of different themes, but at their heart they all stem from formative memories.

“When writing we considered how our understanding of past experiences had shifted through the many different retrospective lenses we have. Life has become more complex and we wanted to capture that feeling of looking back, finding the beauty in those simple moments that exist as silver-linings in our memories. That reflection also brought us to think differently about the complexity and challenges of life today. It inspired us to consider the importance of taking responsibility for the harm that the world is doing to itself, at the same time as needing to take more responsibility in our own lives.

“We had the majority of the album written just before everything shut down in March last year, but, since taking that enforced pause, the songs have grown to take on new significance for us. Nostalgia is a feeling that has become more relevant for everyone in the last year, with more time and space to reflect on past experiences. We regrouped in the summer in a strange, semi-locked-down London to record Yesterday Park.

“Although we’d always previously self-produced our music, we wanted to expand our sound for this record in order to best capture that feeling we wanted to create, and we began working with producer Mikko Gordon (Thom Yorke, Arcade Fire). We stepped away from some of our old approaches and brought in new ideas, experimenting with more complex production that we had previously shied away from. Introducing new textures, instrumentation and recording techniques allowed us to better create that reflective feeling we were aiming for. We drew a lot of influence from the ’90s, and particularly beat-driven ’90s hip-hop which inspired a lot of the grooves in the album.

“After being apart from each other for months, away from any chance to perform, hunkering down in our hometown and focusing in on making Yesterday Park was a really intense experience for us, and emphasised that cathartic feeling of reflecting on the past.”