Track By Track: Kristín Anna - ‘I Must Be The Devil’ - Reykjavík Grapevine

Track By Track: Kristín Anna – ‘I Must Be The Devil’

Published April 23, 2019

Track By Track: Kristín Anna – ‘I Must Be The Devil’
Photo by
Art Bicnick

Kristín Anna—also known from múm and Kría Brekkan—recently released her long-awaited solo album. “I Must Be The Devil” is an enchanting collection of piano-based tracks sung in Kristín Anna’s distinctive whispery voice. We asked her to talk us through it.

The Ocean Wave Rocks My Knee Shells
I’d been singing it while taking walks and arranged it for the piano while still in múm. I suspected myself pregnant, and was perhaps both sad and happy. Standing on the shore, sad to leave, excusing the occasional laughter.

Forever Love
I sat down with a pen and paper, wondering if I could draw a picture that would reflect my soul, and someone would see it and love me. I drew stupid flowers and wrote on the back of it “the spell I cast to get you to love me” as a joke. Then I quickly wrote this song on the piano and saw a shooting star.

Heartly Matters
A song I nearly forgot, yet the emotion of it keeps resurfacing in my life. The lyrics imply a failure of communication; what happens when you keep all your thoughts to yourself, hoping someone else will set things right.

Star, Child
I was married to this guy who really liked films about women who eventually go mad. It had something to do with him. He was the star’s child, then became the star, and the rest is sung to a child who’s bewildered.

Clay and Vapour
On a spiritless autumn day at my mom’s house, I placed my hands on the piano and said “I could just write a song.” Then my fingers played it. It has always been with me—the lyrics are, to me, timeless.

Like The Others
Made originally on a cheap keyboard at home in Manhattan. I used organ sound effects and agony.

In the Air
My niece told me about a peyote ceremony she experienced in Mexico, where she felt a whiff of air from Iceland on her face. From a spiritual homesickness, I return to where I come from when playing music.

Place of You
Written one sleepless night on the organ of a friend’s grandmother. I had the keys to the garage where it stood and sneaked in there in the middle of the night without permission. It came out exactly like this. Then I sneaked back out.

This song was written on a three-day guilt trip. Asking forgiveness. I’d run into her, and we hit it off instantly. We met for dinner and roamed downtown Manhattan. We really liked each other and didn’t say goodbye until very hungover and sombre the next day. That night I watched her play music and understood she was a sacred heavenly being, and felt ashamed for having not shown this person the reverence I felt for her, and myself and the light that shone around us.

‘I Must Be The Devil’ is out now on Bel-Air Glamour Records. Read our last interview with Kristín here.

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