's seventh studio album Young as the Morning Old as the Sea
was officially released today, and I for one have decided something very important: It's not possible to hate Passenger. He's just a lovable bearded Bripster (yeah, that's a British hipster) with a smooth adolescent-boy croon and a strong passion for his music. If you somehow did hate him, you don't anymore, because you're about to watch this short documentary on the making of his new album Young as the Morning Old as the Sea.
The visual includes interview snippets with Passenger and his supporting musicians, filmed in their studio in New Zealand. The band members each give a little spiel about what got them into music, and damn, they're just all so in love with it. Passenger himself (Mike Rosenberg) speaks on the geographical diversity of the musicians, who come from Australia, the US, Canada, and the UK, and about how they all came together to record down in New Zealand. The way all these guys talk about their chemistry, along with the energy and joy they channeled into this album, you start to think it's contagious. And, of course, don't forget to watch right to the end for an overly dramatic shot of Passenger stripping down to his underwear (or pants, as the Brits say) and doing a little baywatch jog into the ocean. What's an album documentary without one of those?
The album itself is available just about everywhere you can get music, and it comes in deluxe format, with six intimate acoustic versions of songs from the album. The lighthearted, folky feel makes Passenger's telling lyrics come alive. Even in the more somber tracks, such as "Beautiful Birds" (featuring Birdy) and "Fool's Gold," there are uplifting harmonies and that same infectious energy. The acoustic versions are also a nice treat - a little like you just sat down for a cup of tea with Passenger and he thought it'd be nice to have a little music. Young as the Morning Old as the Sea
is something you can put on no matter the time and place. Seriously, I don't think anyone can hate this music.
In the documentary, Passenger explains his desire for the album to have longevity and to be relatable rather than just selling well. It's quite easy to see that his lighthearted folk already has a certain timelessness to it, a quality that I don't think will die anytime soon. So listen to Passenger, play it for your parents, your children, your mates. Play it by yourself walking around your empty house in nothing but your pants (or underwear, as the Americans say). Or don't play it - Passenger and his band will still have that contagious enthusiasm and passion that got them this far. That seems to be all they need.
Also check out our exclusive session with our favorite Brit: