From Iceland — The Mainland Is Shaking

The Mainland Is Shaking

Published July 5, 2023

The Mainland Is Shaking
Photo by
Jenny Retschkowski

False Majesty’s Deathcore From The Islands

Iceland is trembling and the epicenter is the Westman Islands. However, it’s not an earthquake causing the rumble; it’s the sound of amps blasting deathcore. For this edition of the Filthy Interview series, I had a virtual sit down with False Majesty drummer Skæringur Óli Þórarinsson and guitarist Trausti Mar Sigurðarson. 

Age Is Overrated

The majority of False Majesty’s members have been playing together in the local music scene for more than 15 years. They’re adults, most with children of their own, who wanted a hobby outside their daily lives. They began talking about forming the band in 2017 and, in 2020, they had their first official practice. 

False Majesty’s lineup was complete when Trausti joined as the vocalist last summer, solidifying their sound and drastically lowering the average age of the band. Trausti also plays in another Westman Islands metal band, Merkúr. “The age difference is quite big in False Majesty, but the band experience itself is not too far off from being in Merkúr,” Trausti says, explaining that while Merkúr aims to be as “headbangable as possible,” False Majesty’s focus is on melody and technical skill. 

From Fire, Reborn

“The local music scene in the Westman Islands is small but growing,” says Skæringur. “It has its own local legends and had around 40 active bands around 15 years ago.” Unfortunately, a major setback occurred when the main rehearsal space in a fish factory burned down. But a revival is underway.

Skæringur explains that the band has always been drawn towards technical and complex music because it requires skill and effort. This focus on technique was an unspoken agreement among the band members. Some of their biggest influences include bands like Slaughter to Prevail, Archspire and Lorna Shore.

Short Life, Great Accomplishments

False Majesty took part in this year’s Wacken Metal Battle, where they faced off against this year’s winners Krownest. Skæringur and Trausti were humbled to learn in a previous interview that Krownest was intimidated by them. “We are so amazed to hear that, especially considering False Majesty’s relatively short presence in the scene.” In fact, their Wacken set was only their second time performing with Trausti on vocals.

Welcomed With Open Arms

Being from a small island and having to take a boat to reach the mainland adds an extra level of excitement and hype to their performances. “We have never been excluded because we are not from the capital area,“ Skæringur says. They are, however, exploring the possibility of hosting gigs on the Westman Islands and inviting the whole Reykjavík scene to come cliff-swinging their black hearts out. “We have the perfect venues on the islands. We would love to set up a stage inside of one of the volcanic craters,” says Skæringur, dead serious.

False Majesty has an upcoming gig at Gaukurinn alongside Epidermal Veil, Slor and Sóðaskapur on June 10. They also have their sights set on the Reykjavík Death Fest in September. 

Have you already saved the date for June 10? Then, see you at Gaukurinn. If not, see you in hell. You can stay up to date with False Majesty’s on their Instagram page, @falsemajestyband

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