Comment: I mentioned Of Monsters and Men in yesterday’s entry and then in the comments section I said that I loved lead singer’s Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir’s voice. If the only songs you know of this quintessential indie band are their biggest hits (Little Talks or Mountain Sound), you might not be aware of her sweet and mildly raspy voice. Both songs are great but do not showcase Nanna’s vocals that much. Instead, listen to Organs, an underrated gem that wasn’t even a single off the band’s sophomore album. It’s all about Nanna and her flawless vocal delivery. Enjoy! #ThrowbackThursday
Continuing with yesterday’s topic of Icelandic artists, for this week’s #throwbackthursday entry we have this classic song from Sigur Rós: Hoppípolla. You’ve probably heard it hundreds of times even unknowingly, as its piano-based melody has been used multiple times in TV ads and music festivals. It was even used on BBC‘s Planet Earth documentary. However, it is so good that it is well deserving of its ubiquity. It certainly has a relaxing and soothing vibe that makes it almost impossible to get tired of it.
Many, if not all, of the songs from this band led by Jónsi have lyrics on Vonlenska, also known as Hopelandic, which is a “language” invented by Sigur Rós that resembles Icelandic but has no semantic meaning at all. The idea is that the listeners give the songs whatever meaning they want to give them. Hoppípolla is no exception to this and I think that makes it even better, as it cannot get more universal than that.
The band, who appeared on an episode of Games Of Thrones singing The Rains Of Castamere (Sansa and Joffrey‘s wedding), is currently on a hiatus. They have had some legal issues recently and Jónsi has just released his second solo album after 10 years. Hopefully, they will make new music as a band pretty soon.
In the meantime, let’s enjoy once more this classic tune.
Icelandic artist Ólafur Arnalds is one of my favorite composers still active. His last album,re:member (2018), was outstanding, for which he even invented a ground-breaking musical system called Stratus. If you have seen the British TV show, Broadchurch, then you are familiar with Ólafur’s work because he composed its gorgeous soundtrack. He started to get noticed when he supported Sigur Rós during one of their tours in 2008. All in all, I think it is safe to say that he is a brilliant multi-instrumentalist.
Ólafur is preparing a new album for November but he has already delighted us with a couple of new tracks. Back To The Sky is one of them but the peculiar thing about it is that it is closer to an indie song than to anything else. To begin with, it is a collaboration with Icelandic singer, JFDR, so it got lyrics and beautiful vocals. Listening to this song is similar to floating in the air. From the flawless instrumentation to JFDR‘s hypnotic voice, everything in it feels like part of a dream. Please don’t wake me up.