On February 19th 2003, a band called The Postal Service released an album called Give Up. It was the product of a curious union between vocalist Ben Gibbard of Death Cab for Cutie and the producer Jimmy Tamborello, known as Dntel. The pair had been exchanging CD-Rs through the post and working on their glitchy, introspective electro-pop independently in their bedrooms. Their record label, Sub Pop, were supportive but realistically expected it to shift maybe 20,000 copies.
By September 1st 2010, Give Up had sold 1,012,135 copies in the US alone, making it only the second Sub Pop release after Nirvana’s Bleach to go platinum. Something about this sweet, ethereal record struck a chord that surprised even those who made it. They thought they were putting together something niche, a labour of love, but Give Up was the album for its time and place. It brought electronic music in from the clubs and made it something quiet and personal: a romantic, digitised sound for a digitised world in need of romance.