From Iceland — Straumur: Power-Punk And Trippy Historic Sites

Straumur: Power-Punk And Trippy Historic Sites

Published August 30, 2017

Straumur: Power-Punk And Trippy Historic Sites

Icelandic-Brightonian punk-pop trio, Dream Wife, just put out the song ‘Fire’ and it sure has been blazing up music publications, both domestic and international, as well as getting good press at The Fader, Stereogum and airplay on BBC 1’s Annie Mac. It sports shredded monster-riffs, bass lines that ooze badass feminine attitude, and singer Rakel pulling out all the Karen O-stops. But even with all that punk energy it’s also catchy as hell—the ohhh’s and ahhh’s of the backing vocals pushing it over the edge into mass appeal territory.

It’s a winning blend mixing up The Breeders, Yeah Yeah Yeah’s and Le Tigre, stirred with a slice of Sleigh Bells. ‘Fire’ is a single from an upcoming EP bearing the same name, out on September 29th, on vinyl and digital. The label Lucky Numbers, which has artists like Friends, Goyte, Sebastian Tellier and Sleigh Bells on their roster, is releasing it. We will be watching out for the Fire and look forward to get burnt by it (in a good way), and so should you.

In other Icelandic-musicians-working-with-foreign-musicians news, we recently received two songs by the project Bersabea, a collaboration between the Icelandic London-based Birgir Örn Hilmarsson and the Finnish Niko-Matti Ahti. In the song ‘Lite Bulbs,’ they make delightfully weird electronic arcade-psychadelia with oriental tinged melodies and synthesisers that sound like bird chirps. ‘Two Tassels’ is even stranger, starting with a lo-fi tape hiss before a cascade of sampled vocals from traditional Chinese folk music is piled on, then layered with booming drums, tons of off-key synths and noises from god-knows-where, mounting in a chaotic mess that barely hangs together on the force of pure willpower and the gigantic momentum of an avalanche running down a rocky mountainside.

Both songs are from Bersabea’s recently released LP, ‘The Newest Historic Site.’ The Nordic duo describes their music as “an open-ended inquiry. Improvisations, samples, voices, field recordings and other aural flotsam gets collaged into bite-size pop donuts. Niko-Matti and Birgir live in different countries in the northern hemisphere. The music is stitched together somewhere in between. Nothing is premeditated, nothing is arbitrary. Everything is playful; joy and terror abound.” We abide by that description and promise a good mind-expanding headphones experience if you check out these songs on youtube or Bersabea’s own website.

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