Holy moly! More hot, steaming geysirs of gleaming, sulphurous, fresh Icelandic music spurting out of the internet, and right into your ears! Yup: it’s the Grapevine playlist.
Allenheimer – Megas
Music scene veteran Atli Bollason returns with a new experimental solo project Allenheimer. With tinny, scratchy background guitars over electronics, vocals and synth bass, “Megas” is reminiscent in its experimental spirit to The Microphones. It’s the opener of the ‘Fivefiles’ EP, out now via the new Unfiled label, available at unfiled.bandcamp.com. JR
Örvar Smárason ft. Sillus – Photoelectric
Múm were one the key bands in forming the international idea of the “Icelandic sound.” You could say that makes Örvar Smárason one of the architects of contemporary Icelandic pop. His debut solo track, featuring Sillus, is a beautiful, textured, low-key pop song that’s as light as Air. The album, “Light Is Liquid,” comes out in May via Morr Music. JR
Lord Pusswhip – Xmas Jam Creep
Lord Pusswhip is an ever-evolving figure. A sometime producer, rapper, and electronic experimentalist, his ‘Hand of Glory’ EP is weird-ass IDM that opens with this micro-opus, featuring fractured rhythms, ADHD structures, and occasional background singing and screaming. It’s released soon on Bjarki’s bbbbbb imprint. JR
Alvia & Whyrun – Tekið mig til
Alvia broke onto the Icelandic rap scene with her debut album, and has since held it in the palm of her hand. The self-proclaimed “Bubblegum Bitch” recently dropped a dope new track produced by WHYRUN (Ýmir Rúnarsson) entitled ‘Tekið Mig Til’. Dreamy and elegant, the song is driven by a leading synth with Alvia’s voice taking you to fun and exotic places in your mind. SR
Rari Boys – Önnur Tilfinning
Rari Boys recently dropped a fresh new track called ‘Önnur Tilfinning’ (‘Another Feeling’). A sensual 21st-century love song, ‘Önnur Tilfinning’ is a mix of charming lyrics, smooth deliveries, and a fresh trap beat which together create a song that’s relatable, and catchy as hell. To quote a lyric of theirs, “Money comes and goes.” Rari Boys, though, are here to stay. SR
Ben Frost – All That You Love Will Be Eviscerated
Australian noise music star and honorary Icelander Ben Frost released his best album to date, ‘The Centre Cannot Hold,’ in 2017. “All That You Love Will Be Eviscerated” is a 7+ minute epic; a melancholic, noisy drone with a simmering, discomfiting sense of impending violence. The David Lynch-blue video is out now. JR
Sunna – Amma EP
Former Bloodgroup vocalist Sunna has released a new solo EP entitled “Amma” (“Grandma”). The original is a wonky acapella track with multi-tracked vocals. The EP comes packaged with an interesting variety of remixes by Mr. Silla, Sykur, Good Moon Deer and—a highlight—Hermigervill. See her play live at Sónar Reykjavík. JR
Read more about Icelandic music here.