Live seven lightning bolts striking your prefrontal cortex, here are the latest electrifying phenomena to appear from within the Icelandic music scene.
Krassasig – Brjóta Heilann
One half of art-pop duo Munster, Krassasig’s debut single ‘Brjóta Heilann’ is a bright, breezy, and amiable pop tune. With a clattering rhythm, bassy pulses, chill guitar strums and catchy vocals, it’s the kind of track that could easily become a summertime hit. See him live at Airwaves later this year. JR
múm – Smell Memory (Kronos Quartet rework)
20 years on, múm’s seminial ‘Yesterday Was Dramatic, Today Was Okay’ is now considered a milestone of subtle, handmade electronica. To celebrate the anniversary, Kronos Quartet have reworked the distinctive ‘Smell Memory,’ recomposing the heavily-treated string sound of the original as orchestration. It’s nothing less than stunning. JR
ADHD – KEXP Live Session
This evergreen quartet fuses elements of jazz, improv, post-rock and more into their thrillingly propulsive sound. Between the virtuosic drums of percussion of Magnús Trygvason Eliassen, brothers Óskar and Ómar Guðjónsson on saxophone and guitar, and Tómas Jónsson on keys, ADHD are particularly impressive live—hear them at full force on this stellar KEXP session. JR
Hermigervill – The Future Sound Of Iceland
The ginger maestro strikes again with his second snap-released album in six months. Riffing on the name of acid-ambient duo The Future Sound of London, it’s a more retro proposition than his twinkling ‘II,’ with breakbeats, synth washes, and new organisations of canonic elements. As always, it’s entertaining, mischievous and quirky from start to finish. JR
Siggi String Quartet & Una Sveinbjarnardóttir – Opacity
This latest piece from the Siggi String Quartet channels serious Koyaanisqatsi vibes. The strings initially are so frenzied that they sound percussive, leaping around in octaves and fifths, while the eerie chords and a slightly psychedelic music video complete the effect. Imagine the sensation of looking for your keys while late for work but converted into music, and you’re pretty much there. FR
K.óla – Allt Verður Alltílæ
Having emerged from the DIY Post-dreifing scene, K.óla’s new seven-track release is crisply recorded and lushly produced pop music. Her voice has a fine timbre with a ragged emotional edge reminiscent of Karin Dreijer, and compulsive pop tunes like “Nýir Draumar” bring to mind acclaimed indie acts like U.S. Girls. Great stuff. JR
Hjaltalín – Love From 99
Smoochy pop barons Hjaltalín return with another new single. A slow-dance beginning with Högni’s distinctive vocals and some unexpected brass chops gives way to a fidgety chorus, of sorts. Having successfully crowd-funded their as-yet untitled new album, you can catch a live preview at Harpa on September 6th. JR
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