From Iceland — Track By Track: Bróðir BIG's ‘Hrátt Hljóð’

Track By Track: Bróðir BIG’s ‘Hrátt Hljóð’

Published August 10, 2017

Track By Track: Bróðir BIG’s ‘Hrátt Hljóð’
Hannah Jane Cohen
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‘Hrátt Hljóð’ translates to ‘Raw Sound,’ and that’s exactly what you get from Bróðir BIG. To get the lowdown on his new boom bap rap release, we talked to the man himself.

1. DJ Bricks in deep concentration (Intro)
‘Hrátt Hljóð’ is defined by hip hop clichés, so the first words are ones all hip hop heads will know. After, DJ Bricks cuts up iconic hip hop samples to make the cliché complete.

2. Hátalarspark
‘Hátarlarspark’ is an endless lyrical word-soup over a smooth beat from Hákon Don that shows you we ain’t fucking around. Afterwards, DJ B-Ruff cuts up Rakim’s ‘Microphone Fiend,’ maintaining the cliché theme.

3. Hrátt Hljóð
Pure aggressive battle rap, ‘raw sound’ boom bap hip hop, metaphors, word play and attitude. Just kickin’ rhymes—no need to get all philosophical, psychological or scientific.

4. Náttúrulega
Over a juicy instrumental from Morgunroði, one of the smoothest producers here, I let it flow naturally.

5 Frelsi
‘Frelsi’ is happy and light with a nice reggae feel. I even sing on it.

“Scratches have been missing from hip hop and I’ve tried to bring them back since the beginning.”

6. Radio Búggí Vúggí ft. MC Bjór & Seppi
Every album needs one gimmick song, so veteran MC Bjór and the legendary Seppi (of Ha Why?/Afkvæmi Guðanna/Rottweiler) helped me out while our sound wizard Frikki played a radio host. It’s a lot of fun.

7. Frumskógurinn
I give props to original Icelandic hip hop and compare myself to Halldór Laxness. The song is like a jungle—maybe a little cliché.

8. Að eilífu
‘Að eilífu’ paints a picture of a casual good day. Sometimes I drift into more serious matters but finish hopeful, all over a smooth beat from Gráni and blues style guitar licks.

9. Rétt fyrir handan
I wrote and recorded this back in 2015 when the refugee crisis was getting out of control, when we started to see drowning children onscreen. I hoped it wouldn’t stay relevant, but it’s sad how little has changed.

10. Rekkógnæs
Just me having fun with the Icelandic language, telling people to recognize the realness over a lot of scratches.

11. Á ferð og flugi ft. BófaTófa
BófaTófa (of Geimfarar) is my favourite Icelandic MC—he’s been schoolin’ me since I was 8 years old. We exchange verses and end with a touch of cliché.

12. Bragdagalistir ft. Gísli Pálmi
The title ‘Bragdagalistir’ combines martial arts with the art of MC-ing. It’s the most popular song on the album, with maybe more plays than all the others combined.

13. Erfiður viðureignar
Aggressive battle rap. Hardcore beat. A short verse with a whole bunch of attitude.

14. Úr iðrum jarðar ft. Haukur H
Haukur H (of Þriðja Hæðin) has had a big influence on me and here he gives the hardcore spit you’d expect from him. I try my best to keep up.

15. Gullaldar endurreisn ft. Þeytibrandur & Morgunroði
Þeytibrandur and Morgunroði are two of the most slept-on, underrated MCs in Iceland. You may not know who they are but they are far better than any ones you do know.

16. Capeesh?
This hardcore spit has both human centipede jokes and threats of hammer assaults. Producer Jayville gave it a dark, grimy, sick and twisted sound.

17. Outro ft. HÁSTAFIR
The cliché reaches its climax in the outro: “In da house” chants, shoutouts, and iconic scratch samples.

Check out the album on Soundcloud and Spotify.

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