Andi – “Allt Í Einu” (2018)

andialltI first fell in love with Andi with the release of his self-titled cassette on Lady Boy Records back in 2016.  Looking back on it, I can’t believe I didn’t have that album in my year-end Top 5 list for 2016.  Yes, the competition was strong; but there is at least one recording on that list that I probably haven’t listened to since 2016, while Andi remains in rotation.  Since then we’ve seen him perform live twice and enjoyed both occasions.

A few months back Andi gave us another full-length, this one called Allt Í Einu (All Of A Sudden).  Right from the opening track it feels like Andi, though probably a more nuanced Andi than the one we first discovered a few years ago.  To my ears there has always been a certain deliberateness to Andi’s music, an intentionality that gives his tracks firm and clear structures – he doesn’t so much weave his songs as he does construct them from their component parts, adding and subtracting with the precision of an architect.  And there’s still a lot of that on Allt Í Einu, though often the corners are a bit more rounded and not quite as sharp as we heard on Andi.

You can listen to Allt Í Einu HERE, as well as purchase a digital download or a copy on limited edition (of 200) vinyl.  I may have left Andi out of my Top 5 list in 2016, but he’ll definitely be in the running this year.

Iceland Airwaves 2017 – Day 2

Day 2 didn’t know if it wanted to be rainy or sunny in Reykjavik, so instead it decided to be both at the same time.

But a little rain couldn’t stop us and after sleeping in we hit the streets just after Noon.  Our first stop was the retail space/office of FM Belfast‘s Lóa, who posted on Facebook yesterday that she’d have some pre-release copies of the band’s new album Island Broadcast available.  The vinyl copies were still in transit, but I picked up a signed copy of the CD as well as a signed print drawing she did of the entire band (Lóa is an accomplished artist across multiple mediums).  After that it was off to Bíó Paradís to catch the electronica set by one of our favorite Lady Boy Records alumni, Andi, who as usual did not disappoint with a fun mid-tempo set.  From there we popped over to Íslenski Barinn for some lunch, and while there heard one of the most unusual live performances we’ve ever experienced at Airwaves.

When people ask me “what kind of music do they play at Airwaves” my canned response is “everything but country and jazz”.  Well, the opening song by this female duo in matching dresses who go by Bergmál seemed to effectively cross country off the list with a somewhat comical song about how not remembering someone’s name is about the meanest thing you can do.  But then things took a turn for the surreally weird with a song literally about women farting.  And then came the pièce de résistance, a song called “Your Anus Is Not of Uranus”, which helps clarify the fact that the planet is not the same thing as, well, you know… your anus.  A song that includes the lyrically incredible Biology… and astronomy bitches… the four of us were laughing so hard that we were all in tears.  That was followed by songs about necrophilia and menstruation, because of course it was.  Just check out their video.  You’re welcome.

Later in the afternoon we headed over to KEX Hostel to catch the Russian new wave/punk band ГШ/Glintshake (below/left), a show that was being broadcast live back to Seattle (and across airwaves17Day21the planet via the black magic of the internet).  And man did they hit it out of the park.  With a funky rhythm section and sometimes jangly, sometimes disjointed guitars, they maintained a old-school punk rock edge with a pop aesthetic.  We scored a spot right in the front and as always at the KEX shows the sound and lighting was perfect.  As soon as the show ended I get a text from my buddy Travis in Seattle telling me he’d just heard this band live on KEXP and that I had to check them out… and it was the show we literally just saw.  I’ll definitely be trying to track down some of their albums.

After a couple of beers at the KEX bar it was out to the beautiful theater Gamla Bíó for some metal and industrial.  Godchilla opened up the on-venue evening and delivered a heavy sludge metal set that was thick and driving.  Next up was Une Misère (right), a airwaves17day22relatively new Icelandic hardcore band that provided an unexpected shot in the arm that hit me like a dose of meth. (♣)  With three guitars this six-man outfit came out in straight aggro style, got in our faces, yelled at us, and drove nails into our skills with the sheer wall of power they produced.  Une Misère came, saw, and conquered all before them and left us all impressed.

And then shit got weird.

Like, really, really weird.

The band I was most interested in seeing tonight was Hatari (below), (♠) who have built a reputation not only for their music but for the extremeness of their visual performance.  Some folks who saw their show at KEX earlier in the festival were uncertain about the whole thing but the high stage and dark room of Gamla Bíó was the perfect setting for their brand of harsh IDM.  The place was packed and the mood just right when the guys came out dressed in their best bondage gear and proceeded to tear our faces off.  The sheer performance was impressive, with all three members staying within their on-stage personaes throughout flanked by a pair of female dancers who looked like they walked off the set of one of the Road Warrior movies… at least until they opened up their black fanny packs (yes, fanny packs) and started throwing suckers into the crowd.  It was pure, controlled insanity and the crowd lapped up every last drop of it.  Their new album just dropped and you know damn well I picked it up.  While the CD will lack the stunning visuals of the live performance, the music in and of itself was outstanding and I have a feeling it’s going to be in regular rotation upon our return.  We ran into the guys later in the evening, and they couldn’t have been nicer and more reserved.  Holly and I agree that this was definitely one of the Top 5 shows (out of 300 or so…) we’ve ever seen at Airwaves… and might just be #1.

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Following that we bounced out to Gaukurinn where we saw an interesting trio of performances.  First up we caught the tail end of the set by CeaseTone, a sort of modern new wavy group.  Next was the enjoyable singer-songwriter tunes of Soffía Björg who held the audience in the palm of her hand throughout her 30+ minute performance.  Then it was Hong Kong’s A New World If You Can Take It (ANWIYCTI), a band featuring three bass players and a drummer.  Their low beats were intriguing, though might have benefitted from higher pitched vocals to offset the chest-pounding low end.

That brought us to our last stop of the night as we popped next door to Húrra.  There we caught the tail-end of dj. flugvél og geimskip who absolutely packed the house and had requested in advance of the show that people vape during the performance, all the better for all her crazy lighting.  But we were there because we had an appointment with the good doctor.  And by good I mean bad.  And by doctor I mean the yellow rubber-glove-wearing Dr. Spock (below).  It didn’t take long from the start of the set for a fairly substantial mosh pit to break out in the small confines of the Húrra performance space, and the crowd and band fed off of each other’s energy throughout the blistering punk/metal set.  The “Sons of Ecuador” killed it, as did their insane Beach Boys cover and interlude featuring Tina Turner’s “Private Dancer”.  Horns and raised fists all around.

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After a late-night hot dog, interrupted by three dudes not wearing any shirts screeching around in a BMW convertible with the top down at 1:00AM, it was time to call it a night.

Two days down, three to go!

(♣) Disclaimer:  I’ve never done meth.  I enjoy having my teeth too much for that.

(♠) Not to be confused with the 1962 John Wayne movie about big-game hunting called Hatari!, because that would have been even weirder.

The Best of 2016

It was another fine year for music and we tried to embrace as much of it as possible.  Besides lots of shopping at the stores in the greater Seattle area, I also bought vinyl in Los Angeles, Denver, and Oklahoma City, as well as on trips abroad in Hong Kong, Sweden, and Iceland.  We saw some great live shows, made some new friends, and discovered new bands.  It was a lot of fun, and we can’t wait to do more of it again next year.

So, without further ado, here’s the Life in the Vinyl Lane “Best of 2016” edition!

Top 5 New Releases in 2016

  1. Ash & Ice – The Kills
  2. EP01 – Dream Wife
  3. Hope – Iiris
  4. Kælan Mikla – Kælan Mikla
  5. Redemption & Ruin – The Devil Makes Three

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Sometimes I find myself thinking about how I’m going to write on certain topics, and that happened to me recently with respect to my Top 5 New Releases list.  I was super excited about Dream Wife and their EP01, enough so that I felt like it was deserving of the top spot on the list, which would also conveniently supply me with a narrative arc since lead singer Rakel was also the vocalist on my pick of the best album of 2015 as part of Halleluwah.  Man, this was going to be so easy to write!

But then I remembered Ash & Ice.  I’ve played the hell out of this album over the course of the year, and I love it more with each and every spin.  So while I certainly root for the little guy (and girl) and Dream Wife in the top position would have made for a great story, it simply wasn’t authentic.  The Kills killed it, and that’s that, putting out an album that is, to my years, light years ahead of everything else I heard in 2016.

There is another thread in this list, however, as all of the top four performers have female vocalists, and the fifth, The Devil Makes Three, has a female bassist who does backing vocals.  So every band/performer on the list has at least one woman involved.  I think we’re seeing more and more opportunity for women in rock and outside of the traditional singer/performer format, especially in rock and metal, which is outstanding.  We saw lots of women performing great music this year at Airwaves as part of outfits like Hórmónar, Singapore Sling, Samaris, aYia, Thunderpussy, and Let’s Eat Grandma, and I for one couldn’t be happier about it.

Top 5 “New to Me” Bands/Performers

  1. Prayers (US)
  2. Dream Wife (UK/Iceland)
  3. Andi (Iceland)
  4. Scorpion Violente (France)
  5. The Lyman Woodard Organization (US)

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All of these “New to Me” bands came to me in different ways.  I saw Prayers on an episode of Huang’s World and literally ordered some of their music as soon as the commercial break came on after their appearance; I’d never heard of Dream Wife until I saw them perform live at Airwaves this year; I picked up Andi’s self-titled release because it was on Lady Boy Records and I pretty much buy everything they put out; Scorpion Violente was a random purchase from the New Arrivals bin at Amoeba; and I read about They Lyman Woodard Organization in an online article.

Stylistically the five band have nothing in common, ranging from cholo goth to pop-punk to electronic to industrial to jazz-funk.  They varied in genres just as they did in the ways they came to my attention.  This makes me feel good – the wider the net I can cast in the search for the new and interesting, the more likely I am to have my horizons expanded and mind blown.

I can’t recommend Prayers enough.  If you’re into hip hop or even somewhat darker electronic music you need to give these guys a listen.  But really I could say the same about all five of these selections.  Even if you’re not into their style, you may very well find something you like and have your musical base broadened just a little.  But be careful – if you open that door, even just a crack, there’s a whole flood of awesome music on the other side that will blow it down and rush over you like a tidal wave.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Top 5 Vinyl Purchases

  1. U-Men – U-Men
  2. No New York Compilation
  3. Revolver – The Beatles
  4. The Decline of Western Civilization Parts I & II Soundtracks
  5. The Icelandic Punk Museum Cassettes

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I think I felt a little less passionate about acquiring specific things in 2016 than I have in past years.  That’s not to say I haven’t enjoyed playing tons and tons of new vinyl (and tapes, and CDs), but there hasn’t been a lot of the thrill of picking up a rarity or even new releases that I looked forward to with great anticipation (though there are a few items due in 2017 that I am excited about).

That being said, I did get my grubby paws on a few rarities and cool titles this year.  U-Men is a legitimately scarce pre-grunge Seattle punk record, and the original pressing of No New York was an exciting find in Oklahoma City.  Getting red vinyl Japanese first pressing of The Beatles’ Revolver in Hong Kong was my first foray into that collecting rabbit hole, and the record will always carry with it the great memory of listening to James Tang play us different versions of Beatles songs and break them down for us by their differences.  The two Decline records are soundtracks to a pair of great documentaries which also finally got released on DVD.  While the last item(s) on my list are actually tapes not vinyl, I was probably most excited to get my hands on those from a purely musical standpoint – there’s some great stuff on those comps, and they hold a proud spot on my tape rack.

I’ll be excited to see what 2017 brings!

Top 5 Live Shows

  1. Macklemore – Neumos, Seattle
  2. The Devil Makes Three – Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Colorado
  3. Dr. Spock – Húrra, Reykjavik
  4. Dream Wife – Harpa, Reykjavik
  5. The Ills – Húrra, Reykjavik

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When a good friend of mine, who shall remain nameless, called and said, “psst, I’ve got two spots on the guest list for the Macklemore album release party at Neumos, do you want to go?”, I couldn’t say yes fast enough.  The chance to see Seattle’s best known hip hop artist (sorry Mix-A-Lot, but he has the belt now) playing in an intimate venue like Neumos in front of the home town crowd was way to good to miss.  And it was great.  Including the part shown here when he climbed up onto the ledge of the balcony level (right) and then dove backwards into the awaiting crowd below.  I doubt I would have tried that, especially given that there seemed like a lot of 14-year-old girls down below waiting to catch him.  But catch him they did, and it was a hell of a show.

The Devil Makes Three are always great live, and getting to see them at Red Rocks was just icing on the cake.  An amazing venue, and once the show started I hardly noticed the wind and the cold.  The other three shows rounding out my Top 5 were all at Airwaves.  I’m going to skip past Dr. Spock and Dream Wife as I’ve written pretty extensively about both bands recently, and go straight to The Ills.  When these crazy Slovakians hit the stage at Húrra, all five of us in our Airwaves posse basically groaned – “ugh, instrumental rock…”.  But by time the second song was done The Ills had won the entire crowd over, including us, with their sheer enthusiasm and joy of playing, plus of course they had some pretty sweet licks.  By the end of their set we were all bummed they couldn’t play just one more song.  We ran into a couple of the guys the next night and they seemed genuinely appreciative of the praise we heaped on them.  Bands like The Ills are why you go to Airwaves.  Look for a review of one of their albums in the upcoming weeks.

Top 5 Places to Buy Records

North America
1. Easy Street Records, Seattle
2. Daybreak Records, Seattle
3. Guestroom Records, Oklahoma City
4. Amoeba Music, Los Angeles
5. Hi-Voltage Records, Tacoma

The Rest of the World
1. Lucky Records, Reykjavik
2. Trash Palace, Stockholm (Sweden)
3. Shun Choeng Record Company, Hong Kong
4. Reykjavik Record Shop, Reykjavik
5. The Record Museum / Sam the Record Man, Hong Kong

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I feel like I should just retire Easy Street and Lucky, since they are my two go-to shops and will likely remain so for years to come.  Hell, I could easily populate a Top 5 in North America with just Seattle area shops that I visit semi-regularly.  But such is life in the vinyl lane.  Seattle’s Daybreak Records is new on the scene this year and has an impressive amount of quality wax in a relatively small space.  Guestroom was a very pleasant surprise that I came across during a business trip to Oklahoma, and I came away with an armload of great titles there.  And if there’s one upside to all the business trips I had to take to Los Angeles in 2016 it was the opportunity to pay some visits to Amoeba, which has so much vinyl that I literally run out of energy looking well before I’ve had a chance to look at everything.  Hi-Voltage rounds out the North America Top 5 – they moved into a new location down in Tacoma and I love the new layout.

We got to visit record stores in three other countries on two continents in 2016.  Reykjavik of course gave us the always amazing Lucky Records and Reykjavik Record Shop, places where the folks working there are more like friends and family than employees.  A pre-Airwaves trip to Stockholm gave me a chance to visit Trash Palace for a second time, one of the best punk/metal speciality shops around.  And Hong Kong… ah, Hong Kong.  Shun Choeng Record Company was hard to find – it’s actually in a regular looking office building on one of the middle floors, and there’s no sign for it on the street.  It was impeccably laid out and organized, and I swear every single used record in there was immaculate.  While we didn’t buy much there, it was a fun shop to explore.  And we can’t forget our visits to James Tang, aka Sam the Record Man (above), as he literally gave us a masters-level course in the different sound qualities of various versions of the exact same songs.  It was fun and educational, a visit I’d highly recommend even if you don’t end up buying anything (though I recommend treating yourself to a Japanese red vinyl first pressing of something you enjoy… you won’t regret it).  It’s probably the only record store that also has a chandelier and will serve you coffee or tea in fine china.

The best record shopping experiences are those that come when you can build rapport with the folks at the stores.  Record shopping is fun in and of itself, but that takes it to a new level and makes the whole thing special.

Top 5 Music Books

  1. Miles:  The Autobiography, by Miles Davis
  2. Hardcore:  Life of My Own, by Harley Flanagan
  3. Porcelain, by Moby
  4. I’ll Never Write My Memoirs, by Grace Jones and Paul Morley
  5. X-Ray Audio:  The Strange Story of Soviet Music on the Bone, ed. Stephen Coates

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I’ve always been a pretty voracious reader.  I’m probably good for 30+ books in a typical year, and once when I decided to keep track I finished a year at 51… almost a book a week.  Traditionally I’ve spent almost all of my reading hours on non-fiction, but over the last few years I re-discovered my love for sci-fi and I’ve been consuming novels at a rapid rate, aided no doubt by the amount of time I’ve spent on airplanes in 2016 (best guess is I’ve been on somewhere around 60-70 flights this year).  However, I did find some time to squeeze in some music related reading, and these are the best of those books I read in 2016.

Most of these are autobiographies, which can at times be a mixed bag, perhaps nowhere as much so as with my top pick, Miles:  The Autobiography.  I applaud Miles for penning his own book, using his own voice and not relying on the co-author to turn his words into something different.  You feel like you’re listening to the man himself speak, though that can be good and bad.  What was refreshing in the first hundred pages could at times get grating as the book progressed.  Miles gives movies like Goodfellas and Pulp Fiction a run for their money with the sheer volume of “fucks” he writes, and there are entire sections that seem to devolve into “then I played here with these guys, then I played over here with these other guys…”  But man, there are some moments of brilliance here where you get a glimpse into how deeply Miles understood music, and I have to give the man credit for exposing himself completely, warts and all, including drug addiction and domestic violence.  An important work in understanding the nature of genius.

The other three autobiographies each had lot to offer as well, and I found them generally honest and forthcoming, not simply providing an idealized version of the individual.  Grace Jones probably has more of her pure ego come through than the others, but she’s a powerful and confident woman, and that shows on the page.  X-Ray Audio is a killer book about a very unique topic, old bootleg records from the Soviet Union that were cut on used x-ray file.  A definite passion project, and one beautifully packaged.  All of these were enjoyable and brisk reads.

 

So there you have it, my 2016 recap.  It’s had to believe this is the fifth one of these I’ve written… the years are going by so fast any more.  Keep on playin’ those tunes and hunting for new music, my friends!

Iceland Airwaves 2016 – Day 1

It’s 7AM on Thursday morning in Reykjavik, and I can’t sleep.  For whatever reason this entire trip has been a blurry week of going to bed barely able to keep my eyes open, then snapping wide awake about four hours later.  I know this kind of thing happens to people this far north during the summer, when the daylight is endlessly long and you feel the urge to take advantage of the sun because you know that the dark season is coming.  But Reykjavik has been a nothing but gray, from the impenetrable blanket of clouds covering the city and the battleship gray of the ocean in the harbor.  I should be able to wrap a comforter around myself and sleep for days.  But my head is still buzzing from last night’s shows, so instead I’m in a dark room, looking out a window at a tree wrapped in white Christmas lights, and writing this, my first postcard to Airwaves ’16.

I started the day over at Lucky Records, where King Lucky and Gestur had a whole pile of tapes, CDs, and records awaiting my perusal.  Figuring out what I already had was the first step, and I’ve finally reached the point where I can’t conclusively do that without the help of Discogs, which thankfully I was able to access on the store computer.  I only had an hour in the morning for records, so my friends at Lucky put my growing “buy” pile in the back for me to return to later in the trip.

The reason I only had a hour at Lucky was because we were doing the Reykjavik Music Walk, a tour of the city led by music journalist and PhD student (and brother of Ghostigital’s Curver) Arnar Eggert Thoroddsen.  Arnar led us through a rambling tour of downtown, pointing out the Sugarcubes’ old rehearsal space, locations of long-forgetter venues, and Björk’s old apartment.  He’s knowledgeable and engaging, and despite having to dodge a few raindrops, our group of eight people plus a film crew shooting a documentary all had an enjoyable time.  These tours usually take place in the summer, so if you find yourself in town and want a taste of the country’s music scene, it’s a fun way to spend a hour.

From there we grabbed some burgers and our wristbands before popping over to Reykjavik Record Shop to visit our friend Reynir and, of course, buy some records.  I didn’t go too crazy, but did walk out of there with Wormlust’s The Feral Wisdom, Box’s Skuggahliðin, a 12″ by Sniglabandið that I didn’t have, plus a four song 12″ comp from Icelandic label Thule Records.  I’ll likely be back there again before the end of the trip once I see how full my record bag is.

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After that we headed to the movie theater Bíó Paradís to catch an electronic set in their lobby area by Lady Boy Records artist Andi (left).  I thoroughly enjoyed his self-titled cassette that came out back in May, and his live show was quite good.  It started a bit slow, but moved into some more danceable beats that actually had group of a half dozen or so people dancing by the bar before it was all said and done.  At times Andi subtly alters the BPM during the build-up, which can throw off your timing a bit but adds an interesting element to the music that keeps you on your toes.

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The drizzle became a bit more consistent, but that didn’t stop us from a quick stop-off at the new Icelandic PUNK Museum, which had it’s grand opening at 5PM.  Unfortunately we didn’t have time to hang around long enough to get inside and check out the cramped quarters, which are in an old disused public bathroom underneath a city sidewalk, but were were there to hear none other than Johnny Rotten (of Sex Pistols fame – right) address the crowd and talk a bit about punk rock and the current state of music (revelation –> Johnny isn’t terribly impressed).  He was an entertaining speaker, though you could tell he wanted to interact a bit more with the crowd, which was actually being quite quiet and almost looking at him as a curiosity, a museum piece in and of himself, which is too bad because he was quite witty and making a strong effort to connect.  I’m going to try to make it back there today to see the inside of the museum.

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From there it was a mad dash to KEX Hostel to catch Singapore Sling (left).  While we didn’t think we had a shot at getting a good spot, a table opened up in the front right at the corner of the stage area and we immediately took it over.  The position offered a fantastic vantage point for taking photos of the band’s droning psych rock set.  The only other time we’d seen Singapore Sling they were hamstrung by some horrible acoustics at the venue, but they suffered no such problems this time around, kicking out 25 minutes of killer music that was carried live by KEXP radio.  Look for some videos of the set online in the upcoming weeks, and give a listen to their latest album Psych Fuck.

After a delicious pulled pork sandwich and a beer at our fortress of a table we were treated to the OG garage rockers hailing from Tacoma, Washington, The Sonics (below), who have been blowing people’s minds since 1960.  Not only were we stoked to see this seminal band play in Reykjavik, but it was doubly exciting because our friend and old high school classmate Evan Foster now plays guitar with The Sonics when they tour.  It was obvious right from the packed soundcheck (after which the band remarked, “we don’t usually soundcheck in front of this many people…”) that this was going to be a high intensity show, and by the time 8:30 rolled around KEX was absolutely packed.  Right in the front just off to our right were the members of Seattle’s own Thunderpussy, who were obviously just as pumped as we were for the show.

And The Sonics rocked our faces off.

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When you’ve been doing rock ‘n’ roll for 56 years, you learn a thing or two, and The Sonics brought all that knowledge and all those lessons to the stage at KEX where they completely and utterly destroyed the room.  There was a heavy Seattle contingent in the crowd, which just increased the intensity level, and they band fed off of it from start to finish playing a blistering set that could have been a “How To” guide for rockers who want to start their own bands.  Yeah, I get it, Nirvana defines the Seattle sound and all that.  But just listen to some of those garage punk elements of The Sonics and you’ll realize that all that late 1980s/early 1990s grunge owes at a minimum a head-nod and a bro-hug to trailblazers like The Sonics.  And they’re still bringing it long after all those other bands have disappeared.  Long live The Sonics!

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We hung around after the show and had a drink with Evan before departing for Iðnó, where we arrived fairly soaked but were fortunately able to find a few comfortable seats in the back where we could relax a bit.  First up was a jazz rock type outfit called Ambátt, but the band we were really there to see was the darkwave trio of Kælan Mikla (left).  They totally blew us away at Airwaves last year, and their self-titled 2016 release will most likely make at least one of my year-end “Top 5” lists.  They brought intensity (and incense) to their set in front of a packed and appreciative room, and it was interesting to hear how much they’ve developed since the last time we saw them.  The electronic beats had more variety, the bass playing more confidence and power, and the singing… the singing… when Laufey Soffía Þórsdóttir decides to go off it’s startling that so much power can come out of that person, a mix of anger and rage and fear that is more cold and clinical than raw emotion, perfectly attuned to their style.

We only saw five bands, but it was a full and rewarding day.  We actually had a conversation about just that with our friend and ex-pat Leana – that there were times at Airwaves when seeing as many bands as was humanly possible seemed to be a goal in and of itself, but that over the years we’ve been able to step back and take Airwaves as it comes, taking the time to re-connect with friends and enjoy the ride.  And that’s definitely what we’re doing this year – enjoying the ride.

Well, I’ve been at the computer for just over an hour.  It’s a little after 8AM, and still as dark as midnight outside our apartment window.  I may just need to crawl back into bed and see if I can sneak in a few more hours of shuteye before hitting the mean streets of Reykjavik again for another day of music.  But probably not.  And that’s why they invented coffee.

Andi – “Andi” (2016)

andicassetteThose crazy folks at Lady Boy Records are at it again, putting out another tape of electronic deliciousness and divesting me of some of my hard-earned cash.  Lest you think that I live some type of glamorous, free-music-getting freeloading lifestyle that sees my mailbox constantly overflowing with free stuff… well, I don’t, and it’s not.  I buy this stuff; I’ve probably bought 99% of the stuff that has been on the blog, with most of the rest coming as gifts from friends.  And at this point I have the entire Lady Boy catalog in physical form (♠), all paid for, because that’s how strongly I feel about what these guys are doing.

The newest Lady Boy release is entitled Andi, by the artist who goes by the name Andi. (♣)  And it’s probably my favorite thing the label has put out to date, which is saying something because I love Old Stories by russian.girls and that fantastic CD by Slugs.  But Andi takes the cake.

I’m not going to give you a song-by-song breakdown of Andi.  Let’s just say it makes me think of electronic disco, in all the best meanings of both of those terms.  There are definitely some stringed instruments included in the mix that at times gives it a classical feel, but the synths and changing beats keep the entire thing fresh and upbeat throughout.    The bottom line is that Andi is a fun album to listen to.  And music is supposed to be enjoyable, so embrace that.

Give Andi a listen HERE.  It looks like there are still copies of the physical cassette (limited edition of 50) available for purchase as well, so if you like what you hear, how about you help out the Lady Boy crew and buy a copy.  There are a lot of great indie micro labels like Lady Boy out there, and if we want to keep hearing the kinds of things they’re able to put out, we need to put our money where our mouths (or keyboards) are.

(♠)  OK, I have everything except for the Rainbows in Micronesia laser engraved tangerine. Because it’s a tangerine, so…

(♣)  Aka Andri Eyjolfsson.