I haven’t posted here for a while as I’ve been in Iceland. What an awesome, beautiful, hauntingly strange land, combined with the most chilled and friendly people. My mind is still somewhere in the lava fields but I’m back, physically anyway, in England.

While travelling I learned some interesting stuff from locals about Icelandic music, beyond Björk and Sigur Rós, although I’m a huge fan of the latter. Of Monsters and Men have made that leap and are getting lots of recognition outside their native country. One name which cropped up repeatedly was Ásgeir Trausti – and no wonder – he composes and plays heart-stoppingly beautiful folk songs. Ásgeir is touring the US (and no doubt a stint at SXSW will widen his appeal) – I’m just hoping he heads to these shores soon. There is currently an English version being made of his award-winning first album Dyrd i Daugathogn. Which leads me to the question – do you prefer to hear foreign artists sing in their own language or do you like to hear an English version?

Meanwhile Reykjavik band Retro Stefson are appearing at The Lexington in King’s Cross on Monday March 25 with a funky, dancey sound. The support is Hermigervill who are intriguingly described as ‘whimsical electro wizards’. The two often play together: in fact it’s such a small country, everyone seems to know each other somehow, so I barely met anyone who didn’t have some kind of connection to Björk or at least one member of Sigur Rós.

Also congratulations to Phildel, who I had the pleasure of meeting at Bush Hall. She made her TV appearance on BBC1 Breakfast News this morning, with an interview and taster of her video for Storm Song. Another artist who is definitely about to get big recognition for her prodigious talents as a singer, composer and visual artist.

 

 

What do you think?