Farewell! You Black Winter Emperor - The Reykjavik Grapevine

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Farewell! You Black Winter Emperor

Farewell! You Black Winter Emperor

Valur Grettisson
Photos by
Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir

Published May 2, 2019

It’s official. Summer is here. Of course, the Icelandic summer is always some kind of a mix of grey skies, rain, strong wind and high expectations. But it’s also a time to revisit your favourite mountain, some local summer festival or to just soak up as many of those D-vitamin filled sunrays between work hours. God knows we need them before the end of the summer.

The Reykjavík Grapevine is optimistic about the weather. In the worst case scenario, we have raincoats. So stop whining about the heavy sky and dress accordingly.

The iconic hip hop artist, Cell7, is on our cover this time around. In a way, she represent the seasons in Iceland. She was the spring of Icelandic hip hop, in the late 90s, when the genre was barely an underground scene in the north of Europe. Her absence in the early naughties was like the winter of rap and now she has returned with the summer as the genre she pioneered has become one of the biggest scenes in Icelandic music culture. Her new album, ‘Is anybody listening?,’ proves that few have voices as strong or original as Cell7.

But the coming of summer also teaches us to appreciate the winter, that black emperor that affects us in so many ways. It forges legends and heroes. It spits out a nation determined to make the most of the light. So this issue is not really a celebration of summer, rather it is a sad farewell to a worthy opponent that readied us for the maddening midnight sun and the endless days. And as Cell7 raps, we got powermoves. Happy summer you all.

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