The music of Icelandic singer-songwriter Myrra Rós calls for a proper deep listening while you are sinking into a comfortable armchair in front of a fireplace. Her soft voice has followed me for more than the last eight years and each time, her album reveals further atmospherical soundscapes. Establishing herself in the international market, the artist actually plays more often in European countries than in Iceland. As Myrra’s latest record was released in January 2019, the next opportunity to hear live those brand new seven soothing songs is getting closer.
Pursuing her solo career, Myrra Rós creates cohesive albums, and Thought Spun spreads a hypnotic atmosphere. No wonder that with her previous involvement in post-rock bands as Andvari and VAR, enigmatic soundscapes are what she is deft at. The album opens with ‘Red thread’, quite a dark and simple intro which points out the emotionally-rich path of lyrics that delve into a theme of thought overload and fear (‘Fear has the longest fingers’, she sings in one song). Although the subjects are not the lightest and are adequately reflected in the music, Myrra conveys it with her blissfully soft voice and lets the listeners feel the intimacy of her performance.
This album is a celebration of women. Myrra set about fleshing out her melodies with the enriching input of her dear musician friends who appear on Thought Spun: bassist Lovísa Elísabet Sigrúnardóttir (known as Lay Low), Sóley Stefánsdóttir on synths, piano and backing vocals, and Myrra’s daughter Lára Þöll on vocals in ‘Water’. Moreover, there are two collaborative songs on the album, one composed with Jelena Ćirić (‘Praisers’), a singer-songwriter based in Iceland. The other song, ‘Saviour’, is the final song on Thought Spun and stands out from the rest by being more danceable, as the career background of Myrra’s collaborator Elín Ey (band member of Sísý Ey) suggests.
On Thought Spun, electronic sound polls blend with guitar mysterious lines and decent drums in the background, mapping out a dark melancholic folk world of sound, which, from time to time, builds up into a deep post-rock level of intensity like in ‘Sway’, which also gets loud and is framed in a murmuring bass.
Perhaps Myrra found herself well outside of Reykjavík since Thought Spun is an album to get lost in, where you can disappear for a while in the open sound space somewhere between the layers of moss covering the lava rocks. Also, she carefully doses her music. The album takes only 27 minutes, which is not too long. So, here I am after those 1600+ seconds, still wanting to hear something more from Myrra Rós.
Words by Stína Satanía
Myrra Rós – Thought Spun
1. Red thread
4. Thought spun
6. Ghost birds