If you’re not yet familiar with Los Angeles electronic duo, Leitbur, now might be the time to get acquainted. Today marks the release of their stellar debut album, Antique Travelers – a project that was originally intended as a follow up EP to 2015’s The Moment That I Knew You but quickly (and luckily for us) turned into a full-length.
After discovering the band – comprised of Jaron Widman and Samantha Krzyston – in the fall of 2014 with their heart-wrenching single, “Heartsink,” I was immediately transfixed by their neo-80’s sound, later throwing myself into their entire catalog of synth-driven EPs that I still cling to today.
Blending cinematic moments with a healthy dose of nostalgia and pathos, Antique Travelers is described as a “film with a happy ending” that has the potential to catapult them to greater heights if the right ears care to listen.
Opening intro track, “M.M. 582,” prepares you for your journey as it symbolizes a flight back to the 80’s (why not?) as we morph into “Solid Ground” which has been described by Widman as “a metaphor for revelations years later.” “You weren’t too careful, now you can’t find solid ground,” Krzyston sings during the chorus – something I’ve been dealing with frequently as the age old lesson of making wise choices starts coming into play time and time again.
First single, “I Need You,” boosts the listener up as the track celebrates the duo’s upcoming August wedding. The perfect track to dedicate to a loved one, “I Need You,” has all those feel-good, Saved By The Bell vibes going on that will have you pulling an AC Slater move in the middle of the street.
Album high note and personal favorite, “Evergone,” pays homage to “Heartsink” with opening lines, “They built a time machine to fill the void we feel” while chill-inducing dark soundscapes engulf your entire being, reminiscent of The New Division.
Fans might remember a time last year when the duo started working on a cover of the Full House theme. While it would have been perfect timing with the Netflix revival of Fuller House, that track is now “I Taught You To Linger” which actually shares the same chord progression as “Everywhere You Look” if you listen closely during certain parts. “Not Just Another Girl” picks up the momentum with synthpop goodness lyrically reminiscent of a Rockell song while title track, “Antique Travelers” captures the essence of the entire record as it carries multiple meanings – one of which of borrowing heavily from the 80’s throughout their entire catalog while traveling there figuratively.
The biggest surprise is “Lost Cosmonaut” as we’re given a change of pace while still being lyrically cohesive, while “Danger Rise” screams Simple Minds 2.0. Imagine being brought into the world of The Breakfast Club’s Claire and Bender post-detention as their relationship starts to falter.
Album closer, “A New World,” delivers us to just that as we’re taken through rougher territory with hopes of a better tomorrow – a social commentary, perhaps? As Widman sings, “Give me life, give me the means / Shelter me from the sad and scary things that we become,” you can’t ignore the stab of loneliness one feels while going through life alone while the comfort of having someone by your side through it all seems like a pipe dream.
Antique Travelers is a journey within itself, capturing the spirit of what it truly means to love music as you discover something new with each listen. Take it along with you on your own journey and allow it to represent something that can’t be captured anywhere else.
Antique Travelers is available now here.