Artist Playlist: Jónbjörn's Ten Top Icelandic Cuts - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Artist Playlist: Jónbjörn’s Ten Top Icelandic Cuts

Artist Playlist: Jónbjörn’s Ten Top Icelandic Cuts

Photos by
Viktor Birgisson & Nick Hanzo

Westfjords-born, Berlin-based DJ and producer Jónbjörn is one of the minds behind the Lagaffe Tales electronic music label. His solo work explores ‘90s IDM, acid breaks, and deep house. Having released on international labels like Neo Violence and D.K.O., his next release will come on Icelandic label FALK. We asked him to name his ten favourite Icelandic tracks.

Felix Leifur – Hampton
Straight outta Kópavogur! It’s amazing how much Felix Leifur has matured as a producer for the past two years, and he gets better with every release. The amazing ‘Hampton’ EP was released on vinyl on Frits Wentink’s label Bobby Donny last year, and it’s worth checking out.

Intr0beatz – Trees Breez
With Intr0beatz you never go wrong. A longtime hip-hop producer went housey on us, and he got the groove. House and old school hip-hop have a lot in common—sampling and chopping old disco/soul tracks is the foundation of both. So this came naturally for him.

Viktor Birgiss – Ljósaskipti
My good friend and Lagaffe Tales partner made this track in 2014, and it’s probably the most beautiful track he’s made. “Ljósaskipti” (“Twilight”) is a smooth, deep house track which has that super nice feel to it.

Moff & Tarkin – Mutual Distraction
Lagaffe Tales’ outpost in Vienna, Moff & Tarkin has been with my label since day one. This is from his four-track vinyl, ‘Big Mango Bangers’ (2016). It’s a dancefloor hit—in Moff we trust!

Davíð & Hjalti – Moods
This was the first vinyl on Lagaffe Tales. Davíð (Felix Leifur) & Hjalti’s ‘RVK Moods’ EP is our most successful release to date. They came out of nowhere. I’m hoping to see them collaborate again—it’s pure magic.

New Musik – Warp (ILO Edit)
ILO is a legend in the game, and this edit became an underground club hit around 2012. It was played everywhere around that time. It’s been in my bag for seven years now, and I still grab it. Keep an eye out for his upcoming EP on Lagaffe Tales.

Babel (Biogen) – Moment
Late Biogen has a softer side. Under the moniker Babel he made more melancholic stuff. I always get this feeling of both love and sadness when listening to this track. Such beautiful music. Thanks, Biogen.

Exos – Yellow Yard
Released on Æ Recordings (Thule Music) back in 2002. Exos is the main figure in Icelandic techno, and has been for around 20 years now. ‘Yellow Yard’ is a fast smooth dub techno track that never ceases to amaze me.

Yagya – Rigning Two
There’s no genre that best describes Icelandic winter than dub techno. Yagya’s ‘Rigning’ is one of my favourite Icelandic LPs. His sound has evolved a lot, so I’m pretty excited to catch his live set at Sónar Reykjavík this year.

GusGus – Believe (Live Version)
Where to begin? I think GusGus was—for many Icelanders—a gateway into the world of electronic music. I remember being amazed by the ‘Ladyshave’ video when I was ten years old. This live version of ‘Believe’ is mindblowing.

See Jónbjörn live on the Saturday of Sónar Reykjavík at 23:00. Follow him on Soundcloud here.


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