Keeping a finger on the pulse

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Q&A w/Mosi Musik

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Words by Bartek Wilk Mosi Musik is an independent band from Reykjavík, Iceland. Their electronic music combines a stylish mix of electro beats with soul, hip hop, pop and R&B. It began in 2013 as a one-man project by Mosi (whose real name is Ingi Þór Tryggvason), who is not only a musician but also a music producer, writer, graphic designer and event planner. Mosi Musik released their debut album, I Am You Are Me, on 25 April 2015 and soon followed that up with an EP, I Am You Are Remix, on 17 June 2015. Three music videos were…

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Norður Og Niður – Iceland´s Unmissable Festival

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Words by Stína Satanía Photograph by Juliette Rowland Most of us immediately associate Iceland with Sigur Rós or the Icelandic Queen of Innovation in Music, Björk. Certainly, they are responsible for promoting the country to the outside world. Unsurprisingly, when the members of Sigur Rós organised and curated their own festival on their home ground in Reykjavík, the celebration was a massive success, attracting festivalgoers from 50 countries, all of them fans of Sigur Rós. It is undeniable that this legendary Icelandic band has assembled an amazing community over the years. (more…)

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Red stars, blues and vodka (on stage in Moscow)

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Words by Alexandra Tskhovrebova The career of Icelandic blues rock band Kaleo is skyrocketing. In a very short time, the band has gone from playing venues in Reykjavík to performing around the world. After being signed to the legendary Atlantic Records, the band moved out to Austin, Texas, and released the debut album A/B in 2016, which has sold over 800,000 copies worldwide. Unsurprisingly, Kaleo spent almost all of 2017 touring. Alexandra wrote about her impressions of Kaleo’s live show in Moscow. (more…)

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It Might Get Loud – Smells Like (Pink Street) Boys

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Words by Stína Satanía If you have never listened to the self-proclaimed loudest band of Iceland, let me give you a littledirection on how to wake up your neighbours on a Saturday morning with their latest bunch offurious punk rock songs. In October 2017, Pink Street Boys released the explosive Smells Like Boys on vinyl. The band took the local music scene by storm when they emerged under this name in 2013, and their garage punk smell, indeed, wafted across Iceland’s borders, resulting in asuccessful tour of the UK and continental Europe last year. (more…)

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A Dream Within A Dream

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Words by Wim Van Hooste It has been three years since Epic Rain released their debut album, Somber Air,on the Lucky Records label. The band is the outlet of vocalist Jóhannes Birgir Pálmason. The departure of male co-vocalist Bragi has left more space for the vocal chords of singer Ingunn Erla Sigurðardóttir. The music is rooted in underground and alternative hip-hop, but in more recent years, Epic Rain began including aspects of cabaret, dark folk, country and blues in their music. Epic Rain’s lyrics are evocative and haunting, describing in picturesque detail persons and their thoughts and actions in a…

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Mimra – Sinking Island

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Words by Stína Satanía Sinking Island, a new album by MIMRA, is a fascinating treat on the subject of vocal experiences. Hidden under the name MIMRA, singer, producer and composer María Magnúsdóttir offers powerful and dramatic vibes. Her electro-acoustic folk pop arrangements are bold and rich, and her beautiful voice is indeed striking. (more…)

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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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The Icelandic Corner of Melodica Festival

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Words by Stína Satanía The international Melodica Festival is a unique musical feast that gathers together emerging singer-songwriters from different parts of the world to expand the community and support the artistic network. Pete Uhlenbruch developed the concept of the festival in Melbourne, Australia, at the end of 2007, and it quickly spread overseas. Now, Melodica takes place in different cities around the world, such as Hamburg, Aarhus, Berlin, Paris, Vienna, New York and, of course, Reykjavík. This year, the festival celebrated its tenth Icelandic anniversary at Kex Hostel with three full days of music. (more…)

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Bedroom Community

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Words by Bartek Wilk Looking through Bedroom Community’s catalogue, you will simply find 30 releases. The first from the label was Nico Muhly’s Speaks Volumes, released on 25th November 2006. And the latest one is from Ben Frost — The Centre Cannot Hold (29th September 2017). But there is much more to the story of this world-renowned collective. The beginning We have to go back to 1997 to Breiðholt (literally ‘wide hill’) in the suburbs of Reykjavík, Iceland. Since the 1970s, Breiðholt has been a community full of youngsters, working class people and non-Icelandic immigrants. That’s the place where Valgeir…

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