In a live performance of his new album's title track, "I Know What Love Isn't," for the Guardian last month, Sweden's most poignant troubadour Jens Lekman explained the song's unusual genesis:
This song is about my best friend when I lived in Melbourne, Australia. We used to spend each Friday night and Saturday night cruising up and down the street listening to oldies radio and look at girls and talk about life, and at some time we talked about getting married so I could get into the country…The idea of building this relationship on something constructed, something with a purpose rather than some vague feeling that could change at any time felt so comforting and liberating at the time. But the problem was that in order for this to work, I would never be able to tell the story, I would have to keep it a secret forever, and that didn't really work for me because I'm Jens Lekman. So I wrote this song about it and left the country.
The song's touching, featuring a great ice-breaking laugh supposedly elicited during recording by this video of Canadian hockey commentator fake-playing the piano. The video was directed on a minimal set by Marcus Söderlund—just like Lekman's recent, spare "Erica America," which is below. I Know What Love Isn't comes out September 3rd via Service and Secretly Canadian.