How did it all start?
Árni: We started working together about a year ago. Biggi asked me to help arrange a song he was writing for Sigtið [an Icelandic comedy show]. He came to my studio and we wrote one song just for the fun of it. That’s basically how it all started.
Biggi: That song is called Silhouette. No one has heard it except us two. After writing that song we saw that our collaboration was working so we continued writing and Hold Me Closer to Your Heart was born, but after writing that song we felt kind of bad.
Biggi: Because we knew the song would be a major hit. At least I did.
Árni: We were afraid that if we would release this song, we would never make another one.
And become a one-hit wonder?
Árni: Exactly. In my view, it was really important to write numerous other songs before releasing Hold me Closer, and actually our first single released was Waiting to Happen.
Biggi: I also felt bad about that song. I felt as if I was in the eighth grade all over again, hanging around in the Frostaskjól youth centre among the tenth grade kids. When in the eighth grade you have this feeling towards the older kids, which is kind of a mix of fear and respect. You respected them but at the same time your stomach was aching. I had the same feeling about Waiting to Happen. I really don’t know how to describe it.
Árni: You felt as if you were a part of something much bigger than yourself.
You managed to face your fears and release a promo CD, featuring the two aforementioned songs. The Grapevine critic, Sindri Eldon, reviewed the single and said that the summer of 2007 belonged solely to you, no matter if you would ever release anything else.
Árni: Yes, we finally released the CD, but we weren’t trying to promote it in any way though. We just wanted to try and see what would happen.
Biggi: And it worked, much beyond our hopes at that moment. The songs have been played a lot on the radio stations, and they seem to be appealing to both the pop and rock genre. It’s unbelievable really, as there are no guitars in these songs! I don’t know how to play the guitar and Árni only knows three chords. My opinion is that if Hold me Closer won’t be an international hit, then I know absolutely nothing about music. It doesn’t matter who would have written this song, when I hear it I can’t imagine anything else than a global success. Anything less would just be weird and wrong.
But you are planning a full-length album sometime in the near future, right?
Árni: Yes, we have the next bullet ready. Now we just need to fire the gun.
Biggi: That song is crazy! Its called Steal Your Love. Remember that name!
Árni: It’s sort of a mix between Hold me Closer and Waiting to Happen.
Biggi: With a touch of Michael Jackson.
Your live line-up is somewhat impressive. And even before your first live gig, people were calling Motion Boys a supergroup.
Árni: Everyone is famous in Iceland so it’s really easy to mix together a supergroup. We share a studio with Trabant so it just happened naturally and we didn’t run around asking for the phone number of Bjössi in Mínus, he actually asked us if he could join in. He got down on his knees and cried out in the rain.
Biggi: Viddi has been an immensely big help, for example with recording Hold me Closer. Then we have Gísli Galdur, he’s of course amazing, and everyone knows that.
Árni: And Tobbi is just like a computer with a soul.
Biggi: Today we think of all these guys as part of Motion Boys.
Your first concert was cut short due to technical problems (see review, page 20), it must have been a great disappointment? Biggi: It was just unbelievable really, but despite this fuckup we all had a great time.
Árni: Afterwards, I feel that the show ended just the way it should have ended. The audience got a preview of Motion Boys and was generally positive towards the music. No one got angry and the incident kind of brought us closer together. I at least don’t have any negative feelings about this show. All I wanted was to get goose bumps and I did. I also find it remarkable that four bands, with no record deals and no album releases, were able to stuff Iðnó. The band Hjaltalín was great that night and so was Sprengjuhöllin.
Biggi: And FM Belfast was crazy.
You must be planning another concert soon. I heard you are scheduled to open for The Rapture at NASA on June 26.
Árni: Yeah we are. That’s gonna be nice.
Biggi: The Rapture is a fun band. I’m sure they will be much more tight on stage than we will, but I’m convinced that we will touch people’s hearts in a greater way than they are going to. Maybe the guys in The Rapture will even be a little weepy when they go on stage. But seriously, I’m sure it will be a great gig.
Árni: It will be good to get the chance to play in front of a large crowd and know that you can deliver the music well. Our live band features experienced musicians who’ve played NASA multiple times over so it’s a great opportunity.
So what’s the plan for the summer? Biggi: To play as many concerts as we can. We are also booked to play at the Iceland Airwaves festival in October.
Árni: In addition to that, we want to travel abroad and play our music for a broader audience. Biggi: And then there is of course the forthcoming album. We are planning to record as many songs as we can this summer and nail the project down and be ready with an album next fall.
You can check out their songs at www.myspace. com/motionboys