I can’t recall how this came up on my radar last year, but somehow it did an for that I’m grateful. If you’ve read even just a few posts on Life in the Vinyl Lane you know that I buy and review tons of Icelandic releases, both old and new, and I have a strange infatuation with the islands musical history. What DJ Paturn gives us on Breaking the Ice is a 90-minute DJ set culled from 80+ vintage Icelandic recordings, much of which he was exposed to via his father, radio host Magnus Thordarson. Sonically the music is all over the board – funk, rock, psych, disco, folk, children’s… you name it, it’s probably on here somewhere. I only wish there were credits included so I could get a better sense of what’s included – I suspect I have more than a few of these records in my collection, but haven’t played them enough to put two and two together (the one thing that sounded familiar was something with a very Icecross vibe). The vocals are both in English and Icelandic, but really they aren’t the focus; this thing is more about the feel, and Platurn does a great job in blending disparate songs and styles in a way that’s seamless.
Breaking the Ice was originally released as a 2XDC packaged inside a 14-page hardback book that includes a background on Platurn’s father and his role in opening up Icelandic radio to outside influences in the 1970s. Per the label website the initial pressing of 1,000 copies is sold out. However, DJ Platurn still has a handful available on his Bandcamp page HERE, and they come with a bonus cassette single, so get a copy while you can, because at $15 it’s a steal. If you’ve ever wanted to get a general sense of Icelandic music from the 1960s and 70s, this is a perfect place to start.