Keeping a finger on the pulse

Issue #1

The Jazzy Queen of Spades

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Words by Stína Satanía Most Icelanders first heard about Sólrún Mjöll Kjartansdóttir in 2012. At the age of 16, she participated in a famous young talents contest called the Battle of the Bands (Músíktilraunir) in Reykjavík. In the 30-year-long history of the competition, it was the first time that a girl was crowned best drummer of the competition. (more…)

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Q&A w/Birgir Jón ‘Biggi’ Birgisson

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Words by Bartek Wilk Photo by Nadia Gottfried Birgir Jón ‘Biggi’ Birgisson – head sound engineer at Sundlaugin Studio Sundlaugin is one of the most famous recording studios in Iceland. How do you feel holding the responsibility for such a remarkable place in your hands? Do you feel any pressure? No pressure, no. I feel really proud about all the great music that has been made here in the past 15 years, I think we have managed to make a great place for musicians to create in so…. yeah. Proud would probably describe it pretty well. (more…)

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Funeral And Rebirth

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Words by Stína Satanía Photo by Sigga Ella (www.siggaella.com) HEIÐRIK first drew my attention in 2013 when the amazing Faroese artist Eivør released a video for her song True Love, directed by a certain Heiðrik á Heygum. I quickly learned that this Faroese citizen currently based in Reykjavík has many feathers in his cap – he’s a visual artist, film director and musician. After I discovered his incredible sense of fragility and the thrilling dark atmosphere of his previous works, I couldn’t wait for his album Funeral, released in Iceland last September. When he was signed on independent Polish label…

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Stick Around for Unun

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Words by Wim Van Hooste Photo by Björg Sveinsdóttir Hi, My name is Wim Van Hooste. I like to delve deep into the history of Icelandic music. Digging for golden oldies, silver and sulphur in the island’s musical underground is kind of fun. One of the most remarkable bands of the nineties was Unun, a phoenix rising from the ashes of The Sugarcubes. Let’s talk about them a little. (more…)

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Q&A w/Árni Grétar aka Futuregrapher

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Words by Bartek Wilk Reykjavík on Stage takes a dive into the universe of Árni Grétar, aka Futuregrapher, half of Árni², a member of Weirdcore collective and co-founder of Möller Records label. These days you’re one of the most recognizable and well-known artists of the Icelandic electro scene. But you worked long and hard to get there. You played lots and lots of concerts and I can’t even count all of your releases. How much energy and work did you have to put in before it finally paid off? I began writing music early – at the age of 13…

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Droopy Dog at the Olympics

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by Wim Van Hooste At the age of 16, the duo Captain Fufanu (Kaktus and Gulli) mixed dub, techno, house and experimental electronica. But since 2015 there is no Captain anymore on board of the Fufanu boat. Two years after Few more days to go (2015), their debut album on the famous One Little Indian (OLI) records label, Kaktus and Gulli Einarsson found a drummer boy that goes by the name Bang. OLI is known for having a strong umbilical cord to the Icelandic indie foetus since Kaktus’ father Einar Örn’s band The Sugarcubes jumped into the Indie Indian’s teepee.…

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Keep Your Finger On The Pulse #01

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Words by Stína Satanía Hildur Hildur is not a freshman on the Icelandic music scene since she’s gained her experience playing with Rökkurró and Ólafur Arnalds. Last year though, she made the first step towards her solo career. Appearing suddenly on the Icelandic sonic firmament with her energetic and positive music, she has won many hearts on the local ground and has already debuted abroad. Her star shines very bright indeed, and last May we got an entire Heart to Heart EP of her warm positive energy. Moreover, her song ‘I’ll Walk With You’ won the Icelandic Music Award for…

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The Variety of Reykjavík Folk Festival

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Words by Stína Satanía The Reykjavík Folk Festival is an annual held in the capital of Iceland since 2010. This year‘s edition set up shop in the cozy warmth of Kex Hostel, and promised to be very intriguing from the start. From the 2nd to the 4th of March 2017 I decided to take a deep dive into the world of Icelandic folk music. (more…)

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Rock On With Stelpur Rokka!

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Words by Stína Satanía It is a Monday morning in July. I am sitting with thirty young women in a huge room, and we just finished playing several ice-breaker games. The young participants are now picking which instrument or musical skill they will learn to play in the next few days. They can choose to play bass guitar, electric guitar, drums, keyboard or to practice vocals. Most participants didn’t know each other before coming to camp. Some came with their friends. Others are here for the second or third time, eager to realize their dreams. Thanks to Stelpur Rokka!, I…

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Heiðatrubador Tour 2017: The Weirdest Trip I’ve Ever Been On

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Words by Heiða Eiríks aka Heiðatrubador I’m on my twenty-somethingth train of the past seven weeks, a night-train between Köln and Berlin. I can’t really feel my lower back or my butt anymore, since I’m trying to sleep across two seats, which is trickier than it seems. Physical discomfort aside, I’m positively ecstatic and I have not felt so alive in a very long time. I’m also quite relieved to have reached the very end of my solo tour as Heidatrubador, which took me to seven countries over seven weeks and must have taken half a year to plan. (more…)

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On Abbey Road With Biggi Hilmars

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Words by Wim Van Hooste Photo by María Kjartans (www.mariakjartans.com) Reykjavík On Stage had the opportunity to have a chat with multitalented musician Biggi Hilmars. He is well known for his previous work with Ampop and Blindfold. Hello Biggi Hilmars! You recently recorded in the Abbey Road Studios with the London Chamber Orchestra in 2016. That must have been a fantastic experience. Funnily when I first came into the hall in Studio 2 it didn’t look like much. It felt like an old gymnasium at elementary school. But when the orchestra began to play the music and we heard the…

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