Culture
Music
Dreifing In Bagdad: The Sunny Nostalgia Of The Bagdad Brothers

Dreifing In Bagdad: The Sunny Nostalgia Of The Bagdad Brothers

Words by
Photos by
Timothée Lambrecq

Published May 17, 2018

With their warm, flowing, mellow sound, Bagdad Brothers are a unique addition to the ever-blossoming Reykjavík music scene. They describe themselves as a pop band, but when you listen to their first album (‘Jazz Kid’s Summer Project,’ released last autumn), you can hear for yourself that this is some catchy indie pop music, with an experimental twist. It brings back faded but colourful memories of chilled-out summer nights.

Bjarni and Sigurpáll have known each other since they were kids, and they’d been making music together for quite some time before the bagdad brothers project was born. From ambient improvisations to a post-rock/shoegaze band called Vára, they kept themselves busy with experimentation. Yet at some point, they decided that it was high time to explore new territories and bring some light and humour to their musical endeavours.

Pop classics and poetry

They noticed that the independent music scene in Reykjavík tends to be leaning to the darker side with its plethora of gloomy electronic artists and black metal bands, so they came up with an idea to offer some alternative to that murky, heavy current.

“We are always trying to push forward with our post-dreifing ideas.”

Inspired both by Icelandic pop music from the 70s (they are really fond of the legendary Magnús Eiríksson, as well as classic bands like Stuðmenn and Brunaliðið) and the more contemporary indie pop from Europe and the States, musically they switched to a more lightweight and upbeat approach, while keeping some of the intricacies and fuzziness of their previous projects present in the background.

Lyrically, the band take cues from Icelandic poetry, citing Ísak Harðarson and Gyrðir Elíasson as influences, as well as situations from their everyday life. The lyrics are sometimes bittersweet and full of nostalgia, sometimes funny and absurd plays on words.

Their newest song accompanied by a video (“malar í kassanum”) that tells an awkward love story, where two people feeling a mutual interest in each other don’t have the courage to show it and lose the chance for a happy ending. The video is an outcome of a collaboration between the band and a group of their friends—all somehow connected via a collective known as “post-dreifing.”

Power in collaboration

In fact, it’s impossible to talk about the band without mentioning “post-dreifing.” A recently formed non-profit creative community, the loosely-strung members work collaboratively across the fields of music and art. In March they released a compilation album named ‘Drullumall,’ which serves as an introduction. Alongside bagdad brothers, bands like GRÓA, Korter í flog and K.óla, to name a few, are also a part of it.

“Our main principle is to gain self-sufficiency for the whole group, so everyone can have an equal chance to create.”

“The current music situation in Reykjavík is very promising,” says Bjarni. “We are always trying to push forward with our post-dreifing ideas, but it’s not about reaching new markets or selling things. Our main principle is to gain self-sufficiency for the whole group, so everyone can have an equal chance to create stuff if they enjoy that.”

The energy seems to be oscillating wildly, and the band has just recorded a new album. Hear it for yourself at the release party at Húrra on the 24th of May.


Culture
Music
The Rise Of ROKKY: A New Star Arrives

The Rise Of ROKKY: A New Star Arrives

by

Following the recent release of her debut single “My Lips,” Icelandic singer ROKKY took to the intimate attic stage of

Culture
Music
Back to the Frou Frou-ture: Imogen Heap and Guy Sigsworth Reunite in Reykjavík

Back to the Frou Frou-ture: Imogen Heap and Guy Sigsworth Reunite in Reykjavík

by

In early October, the stars aligned to grace Reykjavík with a performance by the elusive electropop band Frou Frou. Composed

Culture
Music
Track by Track: Bistro Boy – Píanó í þokunni (‘Piano in the Fog’)

Track by Track: Bistro Boy – Píanó í þokunni (‘Piano in the Fog’)

by

Bistro Boy – ‘Píanó í Þokunni’

‘Píanó í þokunni’ (‘Piano in the Fog’) is Bistro Boy’s third LP. The album is

Culture
Music
Music News: Airwaves Album Flood Begins, Icelander Wins Industry Award, Sónar First Lineup

Music News: Airwaves Album Flood Begins, Icelander Wins Industry Award, Sónar First Lineup

by

A host of Icelandic bands have announced new releases around the Airwaves festival. The long-dormant Benny Crespo’s Gang have announced

Culture
Music
Grapevine Playlist: Berndsen, GYDA, Vök, aYia, AAIIEENN, Jón Jónsson, Sólveig Matthildur & More

Grapevine Playlist: Berndsen, GYDA, Vök, aYia, AAIIEENN, Jón Jónsson, Sólveig Matthildur & More

by and

As Airwaves approaches, more and more new music starts to appear. Here are the tracks we’ve been enjoying… or, in

Culture
Music
Sónar Reykjavík 2019: Richie Hawtin, Jon Hopkins, Fatima Al Qadiri & More

Sónar Reykjavík 2019: Richie Hawtin, Jon Hopkins, Fatima Al Qadiri & More

by

The Sónar Reykjavík festival is an annual breath—nay, lungful—of fresh air for Icelandic music lovers. Joining the dots between the

Show Me More!