Swedish singer-songwriter Jens Lekman will release his fourth full-length (and first in 4 1/2 years) on Feb. 17, and to hear him tell it, making “Life Will See You Now” was an arduous process. Or, at least, a patient self-exploration. Since 2012’s “I Know What Love Isn’t,” the 35-year-old 1) licked his wounds over what he perceived as a tepid response to that album, 2) played some weddings in 2013 to earn money, 3) released in the fall of 2014 the “WWJD Mixtape,” 4) released one song per week in 2015 as part of his “Postcards” series, and 5) collaborated with the Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center on the project “Ghostwriting,” which saw him turn other people’s stories into songs.
In late 2016, he toured a bunch of his new material, including a sold-out stop Nov. 1 at the Masonic Lodge, “trying to figure out what I’ve done, actually,” he told NPR. And today, finally, there are details. “Life Will See You Now” is Lekman’s second record for Secretly Canadian and includes one of the songs from his 2015 series (“Postcard #17”) and “What’s That Perfume That You Wear?,” which originally surfaced on the WWJD mixtape. It’s about a scent “that’s been haunting me for years and the memory attached to this perfume,” he says.
||| Stream: “What’s That Perfume That You Wear”
||| Live: Jens Lekman headlines the Teragram Ballroom on Feb. 27. Tickets.