From Iceland — Fríkirkjan – Friday

Fríkirkjan – Friday

Published October 17, 2009

I’m just going to come right out and say it: All you folks out there that didn’t manage to get a ticket to Kings of Convenience show – boy do I feel sorry for you. To quickly sum it up: the Norwegian duo totally kicked ass.
Let’s start from the beginning. It wasn’t the easiest task attending this particular show at Airwaves. Perhaps the biggest act at this year’s festival was placed at a venue with very limited capacity and tickets for the show were only handed out at Skífan record store the same day on a first-come, first-serve basis. This of course resulting in major queues and somewhat of a stir about it all.
Amidst dim lighting with the packed church cheering them on, Erlend Øye and Eirik Glambek Bøe walk down the aisle and took the stage, their acoustic guitars in hand. Their delicate tunes, calming voices and thought out lyrics set the perfect atmosphere. Initially they only played songs from their new album, all of which lived up to the excellence of the ones prior. All in all, it’s pretty damn good, but there’s something missing. Actually, two things. But those were mended in a matter of minutes
Firstly, strings were added to the set, enhancing the musical experience and bringing the melodies to a whole new level of catchiness. Number two: Erlend Øye is a quirky fellow. At first, there was a lack of the typical eccentricity that makes him such a lovable performer. I mean, last time I saw him live he was stage diving like there was no tomorrow during a marathon version of Snap!’s The Power, and here he was all sane and pulled together. But as soon as Erlend starts asking girls to dance, making arrogant yet charming remarks to random audience members all is forgiven and as it should be. Especially memorable is when he gets all upset about the fact that some seem more preoccupied with getting the perfect photograph than actually watching the show. He declared that the moment will pass you by if all you do is try to capture it instead of living it. I agree.
The highlights of the evening were so many… like the impeccable, almost whispered version of Homesick in the utter silence of the full house. Or the crazy little dancing session on stage during I’d rather dance. Not to forget when, upon request, everyone gets out of their places among the church benches to gather closer around the stage. But top highlight must have been when Erlend performed a song about the notion of Justin Timberlake moving to Bergen.
Besides the magnificent music, Erlend’s and Eirik’s interaction with the audience is what made the evening what it turned out to be. So relaxed, unforced, fun and genuine. My whole essence just wanted more, more, more and then some.
Photos by Julia Staples.

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