Keeping a finger on the pulse


Growling with Skálmöld (and Iceland Symphony Orchestra)

in Wishlist by

It’s summer evening and entire Reykjavík just went crazy. Plenty of people enjoy Menningarnótt aka the Culture Night and use the opportunity to see numerous bands live as well as check out many art exhibitions. I’m walking down the street and don’t even notice that the song in my head can be heard not only by me. I recognize it and can’t believe it might be true. But that is Menningarnótt. Nothing is impossible and I’m listening to none other than folk metal stars Skálmöld. A few seconds later I’m standing up on Arnarhóll and can see their small silhouettes on a huge stage situated at the bottom of the hill.

Although a short performance during Menningarnótt showed only in a low dose how Skálmöld can rock I wait now in anticipation for that one day I will get the opportunity to experience entire full long set. But until then I will adore them for something else that knocked my socks off. I remember the day they announced a collaboration with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. Then I thought it’s gonna be just unusual. I missed out the occasion to see it live since I’m not a huge dedicated fan and always in those situations I feel like this is a feast for those who will be able to cry their souls out at the concert and appreciate it more. I think I just watched Hel afterwards. And it happened. Now I’m more excited I meet Skálmöld´s folk on my way somewhere in Reykjavík than that I meet giants of Sigur Rós. Djók…?

The Icelandic heritage vs sometimes aggressive and heavy sound.

The first time that the Iceland Symphony Orchestra collaborated with a metal band.

This unique mixture of symphonic sound with folk viking metal.

The way it segued seamlessly from one song into another.

Those screams, male and female (!) growls (that I fell in love with and now I need to explore Angist…) and an impressive voice of Gunnar Ben.

Those Icelandic lyrics bubbling over with Icelandic culture (to put it into one word).

The way it is… Skálmöld. I won’t say anything more than this. Just watch it.


Stína has followed her passion to Icelandic music as a music journalist since 2010. She joined then a writing team of Muzyka Islandzka - a Polish website dedicated to Icelandic music. Spreading her wings, Stína started her adventure with Icelandic language and moved to Reykjavík where she studied the language at the university. She also takes an active part in life of the local music scene. Since 2014 Stína had run a music blog that was transformed in 2017 into a printed magazine on Icelandic music.

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