A Grapevine service announcement Pay attention: Eruption Pollution Likely To Hit Whole Country
Music
Review
+-

Hörður Torfa: Eldsaga, Loftsaga and Jarðsaga

Published August 8, 2012

The album series “Vitinn” shows singer-songwriter Hörður Torfa in various stages of life. ‘Loftsaga’ (“Air Story”) from 2004 shows him in his ‘70s prime, looking like a Norse God. Hörður graduated from drama school in 1970 and recorded his debut album in the same year. ‘Loftsaga’ shows him at his most theatrical, assuming various character voices. He is actually better on the less pretentious ‘Jarðsaga’ (“Earth Story”), from 2007 and featuring a pimpled, teenage Hörður on the cover. Highlights include “Draumurinn,” (“The Dream”) an imaginary all-star singalong of Icelandic rock legends which, inevitably, rhymes “Las Vegas” with “Megas,” and “Mas í mó,” no doubt dedicated to his Italian boyfriend Massimo. Somewhere in between is the upbeat ‘Eldsaga’ (“Fire Story”) from 2003, which has a lot of sun on it and seems to have been written for a summer like this. Also available is the most recent ‘Vatnssaga’ (“water story”), while the upcoming fifth element is remains to be seen. Perhaps that one will truly reach for the stars.


Culture
Album review
<?php the_title(); ?>

Hugar

by

I found myself six tracks into Hugar’s self-titled instrumental debut before realizing that the first song had ended. This could mean one of two things: either the lack of lyrical stimulation reaching my brain sent me into an inert mental state, or the neo-classical duo, consisting of producer-instrumentalists Bergur Þórisson and Pétur Jónsson, has achieved the type of cohesion that we are so rarely afforded in today’s single-obsessed musical dominion. I choose the former. The band’s website explains that after “many years in all kinds of different bands,” the two of them started putting together demos in 2012 that eventually

Culture
Album review
<?php the_title(); ?>

47

by

Japanese Super Shift’s ’47’ is an unexpectedly emotional album. The record, which marks the newest creation from producer-instrumentalist Stefnir Gunnarsson, offers a healthy mix of dance-y instrumentals and mature, lyrical songs, representing a multifaceted album that feels as though it could fuel an entire evening, from the first drink to the sombre walkhome. The lyrics are thoughtful and well-crafted, and a comforting break from what we have been trained to expect from contemporary electronic music. Stefnir’s production chops begin to warm up four tracks into the album with “Voxotronic,” a nearly four-minute epic of drum-and-bass-heavy lurching, reminiscent of something a

Culture
Album review
<?php the_title(); ?>

Home

by

With several albums under her belt, two No. 1 singles on the Icelandic music charts, and world touring with Gusgus as a teen, Hafdís Huld has a lot of previous musical experience to draw upon. She’s nearing her mid-thirties now, but has that certain Icelandic agelessness about her. Hafdís’s solo album `Home’ is a simple collection of original folk songs and lullaby-like tunes arranged and orchestrated by the singer’s partner, Alisdair Wright. The warmer, more densely arranged tracks on the album are the most effective and, with a reverberant piano, guitars and percussion, all very radio-friendly. A ukelele even makes

Culture
Album review
<?php the_title(); ?>

Mexico

by

Gusgus didn’t seem like a band that was in it for the long haul. Starting as a loosely strung collective of musicians, filmmakers, producers and vocalists, they seemed to the outsider like a mercurial proposition—a bubbling experimental formula with equal potential to expand, evaporate or explode. But after nine studio albums made over almost two dec-ades, Gusgus would be an essential inclusion on the Periodic Table of Icelandic Bands. They’ve not only continued, but thrived, recently coming into a run of form so rich as to become happily confounding. Along the way, they’ve shed skins more times than an old

Culture
Album review
<?php the_title(); ?>

In the Eye of the Storm

by

The trio of musicians in Monotown (two of them brothers) released their first album, ‘In The Eye Of The Storm,’ this year. The album is a mix of folk harmonies, rock ballads, and up-tempo tracks. The title song is one of the most memorable on the recording, beginning with a Grizzly Bear-like arrangement of strings and layered harmonies, which pauses to transform into a more traditional rock number with warm electronics in the background. Sadly the close of the first track is where most of the excitement leaves. The album’s lyrics strive for simplicity, but end up with clichés: “my

Culture
Album review
<?php the_title(); ?>

Trash From The Boys

by

‘Trash From The Boys’ is the best Icelandic album I have heard for a long time. It might be the best Icelandic album ever made. That might well be. I don’t know. Like a 21st century version of a younger, angrier, hungrier, dirtier, perverser, more cynical, more poisonus, more self-destructiverer version of that band Singapore Sling (I really miss Singapore Sling), Pink Street Boys provide a perfect and, frankly, much-needed antidote to all that hey! business that’s been contaminating our airwaves of late. This is neither wholesome nor pretty. I haven’t been able to discern any lyrics, but I’m fairly

Show Me More!