Was an Independent, Do It Yourself Blog dedicated to Icelandic music by music slut Wim Van Hooste

Was an Independent, Do It Yourself Blog dedicated to Icelandic music by music slut Wim Van Hooste
Moved back to I love Icelandic music & started new blog Icelandic Music Mob
The Enfant Terrible of the Icelandic Music Scene - Crapule de Luxe Islandaise
The Mob
and I love Icelandic music

June 30, 2011

Eistnaflug 2011 Rock & Metal Festival @ Neskaupstaður 7-9. July

Eistnaflug 2011

Sleepless in Reykjavik - Episode 2 of 2011

Sleepless in Reykjavik
Episode 2 featuring Endless Dark & Emmsjé Gauti
The Sleepless In Reykjavik WebTv Show 2011 - Episode 2 from Gussi - Sleepless In Reykjavik

Extreme Chill Festival 2011 "Undir Jökli" @ Hellisandi on 5-7. August 2011

Electronica Festival  
Extreme Chill Festival 2011
"Undir jökli"
Under the glacier 
5-7. August 2011 
In honour of Bjössi Biogen (Sigurbjörn Þorgrímsson)
 Program with
Biosphere, Solar Fields & Icelandic artists 
Agzilla, Andre, Árni Vector, Beatmakin Troopa, Bix, Captain Fufanu, Crackers, Epic Rain, Futuregrapher, Intro Beats, Jafet Melge, Jóhann Eiríksson, Krummi, Murya, Orang Volante, Plasmabell, Plat, PLX, Prins Valium, Quadruplos, Radio Karlsson, Ruxpin, Skurken, Stereo Hypnosis, Steve Sampling, Subminimal, ThizOne, Tonik, Trouble & Yagya.
Tickets @ Miði.is & the shops Brim @ Laugavegur and Kringlan

"The Gameleste": Building an instrument for Björk's Biophilia

Building an instrument for Björk
"The Gameleste" was built by UK cymbalsmith Matt Nolan & Iceland's top organ-maker Björgvin Tómasson

The Gameleste - a custom instrument for Björk from Andy McCreeth

Sykur "Shed Those Tears" released in the UK on 12. September 2011

Sykur are an electro trio from Reykjavik. On 12. September 2011 they release their debut UK single "Shed Those Tears". It's a soundtrack for lost summer weekends, early-hours dance parties and festival mayhem.
Consisting of teenagers Halldór, Stefán and Kristján, Sykur (translation: Sugar) began in 2009, quickly establishing a reputation for packing out parties with girls and boys looking for good times. So much so that Dazed and Confused described Sykur as "plucked from the top drawer, a morsel of such rare succulence that it is sure to gain attention even beyond the cordoning velvet rope that sequesters the art world's N.I.P (Nearly Important People)".
The band already play a pivotal role in the Reykjavik scene and have collaborated with a number of the much of the hottest local talent, as well as sharing stages with international acts as Peaches, Familjen, Casiokids, Juvelen, Kleerup and Junior Boys.
Sykur mark a point where pop, art and fashion meet. Their visual aesthetic comes from their strong design sensibilities - from their homespun illustrations to collaborations with Iceland's fashion designer-to-watch, Mundi Vondi. Remarkably, the world has had to wait for Sykur's tasty slices of electro until the band finished school.
Now, it's graduation time. Packaged with remixes by fellow Icelandic pop stars FM Belfast and London DJ Kris Di Angelis.

  Shed Those Tears (Original Mix) by NÓ Management

June 29, 2011

Vigri "Maternal Machine" Video

"Maternal Machine"

Dr. Gunni "Prumpulagið" Video

Dr. Gunni 
"Prumpulagið" (the farting song)

Sólstafir in the Spotlight @ IMX

Original Rockers
Sólstafir were formed by three friends, Aðalbjörn Tryggvason, Halldór Einarsson and Guðmundur Óli Pálmason in January 1995. In 1999 Sólstafir entered the studio to record it’s debut full length album. By that time Halldór had left the band and in 1997 and 1998 Sólstafir had released two promos as a two-piece. For the recording of the debud full length Sólstafir recruited Svavar Austmann as Halldór’s replacement. Although the recording of “Í Blóði og Anda” had started in 1999 the album wasn’t released until 2002, due to endless delays and mishaps. In the meantime Sólstafir started playing live shows in Iceland, and for that had added a second guitar player, one Sæþór Maríus Sæþórsson. For the first time as a four piece Sólstafir recorded a new demo in 2002, eventually releasing 3 songs as Black Death.

In 2004 the band began working on the follow up to “Í Blóði og Anda” on their own with the help of a good friend. Sólstafir released “Masterpiece of Bitterness” through Spinefarm in 2005, an album that got exeptionally good reviews almost everywhere and the band kept on making a really good name for themselves with really powerful live performances. In December 2007 the band traveled to Göteborg, Sweden to record their third full length, “Köld”, which was released in early 2009. By now descriptions like “sounds like The Hellacopters if they went to art school and did a lot of valium”, “Imagine if Nachtmystium, Alice In Chains and Neurosis got hammered while listening to Entombed’s DCLXVI - To Ride, Shoot Straight, and Speak The Truth - it would sound something like this” and “Sigur Rós goes metal!” were becoming common. Most recently the band signed to Mist records and are working on a brand new album - their fifth - for October 2011...

Sólstafir goes Joy Division: "Warsaw"

Interview with Aðalbjörn Tryggvason

You just signed to Mist - how does that feel?
It feels great to have finally landed this deal after nearly going into a legal battle with the last label. Things were looking bad a year ago. We were stuck with that label, not wanting to carry on with them, and we were having other cool ones showing us interest. A&R people showed up at festivals we were playing telling us how much they liked us and so on. So this feels like you divorced your old wife and now have a hot girlfriend.
You're in pretty good company there huh? Which of their artists are you most fond of?
Atheist, Morbid Angel...even though their new stuff is not dominating my ipod thease days...
You've actually released records with a few labels over the years...who else have you released through?
The first album was in '96 on a the Czech label View Beyond, then in '00 we signed to a German label called ARS Metalli (a year later we got bank robbed due to a label manager who had a sex operation and left the business, we'll write a book about those years some day), then we signed to Spinefarm from Finland in '05 and stayed with them till '10. And we are now on a French/USA label.
How many albums have you released now, and where does the latest album fit into that lineage?
The new one will be our 5th album. Should be out in October.
You've been together longer than most bands and you've been through a few changes in that time; how long has the current line up been in place?
We've been active now for 16 years. This line up has been together since around '00. We only changed bass player in '98 and then added a second guitar player.
What's the secret to your longevity? Does it have anything to do with Cod Liver Oil?
Hrútspungar and Brennivín. Stubborness and not giving a fuck if you are the flavour of the week or not. Make that flavour of the decade or not.
You must have had a great many touring highlights over the years? What's the most rock n roll anecdote you got (nb: if it doesn't include copious sex and drugs we will be disappointed)
Without trying to sound cool, so much shit has happened on these tours, I wouldn't even know where to start. From having a military escort into Finland and being arrested in our underwear in hardcore winter on the streets of Warsaw, there is just too much to take one anecdote from.
People have a hard time pigeonholing your sound. How do you describe it to people who haven't heard you?
I really don't. But i guess you could call us epic rock 'n roll.
What are your current plans - touring, videos, singles etc?
Album out in October, 1-2 videos in progress, no singles please, European and USA tours coming up, hopefully all winter and then head into a massive festival summer in the summer of '12.
Which bands have you not toured with yet that you'd like to, Icelandic or International?
Ham, Stafrænn Hákon, XIII, Sigurrós, Saktmóðigur, Duran Duran, Metallica, Thin Lizzy, Devil's Blood...
What do you all do when you're not rehearsing, recording, touring and writing?
Iceland Music Export (IMX)

June 27, 2011

Rokk í Reykjavík Free @ Icelandic Cinema tonight

Watch after registration the documentary directed by Friðrik Þór Friðriksson about the rock/punk scene of the early 80's "Rokk í Reykjavík" (1982) @ Icelandic Cinema.
For free 24 hours.

June 25, 2011

Sólstafir "Orð" Live @ Oslo 14. May 2011

Sólstafir Live @ Oslo

Björk "Crystalline" Full Version

The 1st single from Björk’s Biophilia, the iPad-inspired multi-media album that will celebrate “how sound works in nature, exploring the infinite expanse of the universe, from planetary systems to atomic structure”.
Released on 30. June 2011 
Listen to the song @ Disco Naïveté
Björk's New Website

Iceland's Top 50 Mood Songs - Topp 50 Stuðlög íslensku þjóðarinnar

Radio station Rás 2 of Ríkisútvarpið (RÚV), The Icelandic National Broadcasting Service, made a list of the best songs to bring you in the mood. 
Here's the top 20:  
1.    Sódóma - Sálin hans Jóns míns    

2.    Barfly - Jeff Who?

3.    Partýbær - HAM

4.    Luftgítar - Johnny Triumph & Sykurmolarnir

5.    Gaggó vest - Gunnar Þórðarson/Eiríkur Hauksson

6.    Ég elska alla - Hljómar
7.    Jón var kræfur karl og hraustur - Þursaflokkurinn

8.    Fjöllin hafa vakað - Egó

9.    Tætum og tryllum - Stuðmenn

10.    Sísí - Grýlurnar   
Cover by Elektra

11.    Þú komst við hjartað í mér - Hjaltalín

12.    Mýrdalssandur - GCD

13.    Can't Walk Away - Herbert Guðmundsson

14.    Húsið og ég (mér finnst rigningin góð) - Grafík

15.    Stick 'Em Up - Quarashi

16.    Útihátíð - Greifarnir

17.    Rúdolf - Þeyr

18.    Popplag í g-dúr - Stuðmenn

19.    Betri tíð - Stuðmenn

20.    Inní mér syngur vitleysingur - Sigur Rós

21. Reykjavíkurnætur – Megas
22. Stanslaust stuð – Páll Óskar
23. Þorparinn – Mannakorn
24. Riddari götunnar – HLH
25. Dansa – Hemmi Gunn
26. Disco Frisco – Ljósin í bænum
27. Harðsnúna Hanna – Lónlí blú bojs
28. Af litlum neista – Pálmi Gunnarsson
29. Bíólagið – Stuðmenn
30. Komdu í partý – Mannakorn
31. Lög unga fólksins – Unun
32. Afi – Björk
33. I Don’t Like Your Style – Bara flokkurinn
34. Þið eruð frábær – Botnleðja
35. Rabarbara-Rúna – Upplyfting
36. Vertu þú sjálfur – Síðan skein sól
37. Fyrsti kossinn – Hljómar
38. Þrisvar í viku – Bítlavinafélagið
39. Vegir liggja til allra átta – Ellý Vilhjálms
40. Í góðu skapi – Sniglabandið
41. Ástardúett – Stuðmenn
42. Heim í Búðardal – Lónlí blú bojs
43. Nú er ég léttur – Geirmundur Valtýsson
44. Krókurinn – Sálin og Pétur Kristjáns
45. Keyrum yfir Ísland – Sprengjuhöllin
46. Það er svo geggjað – Flosi Ólafsson & Pops
47. Stereo Rock’n'roll – Apparat Organ Quartet
48. Íslensk kjötsúpa – Íslensk kjötsúpa
49. Breaking The Waves – Dikta
50. Toppurinn að vera í teinóttu – SSSól

Útidúr "The Glow/Retreat" Live @ Release Concert (November 2010)

Útidúr @ their Release Concert last year
"The Glow/Retreat"

Útidúr - The Glow / Retreat (live @ release concert) from Útidúr on Vimeo.

Singapore Sling "Christmas Coloured Tears" Fan Video

Singapore Sling
"Christmas Coloured Tears", a song from the album "Singapore Sling must be destroyed" (2010) 

Steed Lord goes Istanbul

Steed Lord goes Istanbul

Back to the 90's: "Loose my mind" by Frostbite

Frostbite, the project of Einar Örn Benediktsson (EÖB) & Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson (HÖH)
Frostbite was Einar Örn's first musical project after the demise of The Sugarcubes. He teamed up with Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson to create a sound described as dance music for people who cannot dance.
The album offers weird electronic sounds, Einar Örn's distinctive spoken vocals & HÖH's weird computer programmed sounds, kind of trip hopish in style and quite organic too.
(Source: Discogs)
"Loose my mind" from the album "The Second Coming" (One Little Indian Records, 1993 - TPLP666CD)
Kinky vocals on this song by Katie Jane Garside 

Herbert Guðmundsson

Herbert Guðmundsson 
His most famous solo hit is "Can't Walk Away" (written in 1985, released in 1986)
Herbert has played with many bands, for example Eik, Pelican, Sólskin & KAN.

Ólöf Arnalds "Solitary Man" @ Off Guard @ The Great Escape (2011)

Ólöf Arnalds Off Guard @ The Great Escape, Brighton, UK

Ólöf Arnalds' Website

The Vintage Caravan "Black Swan" Live @ Bar 11 Video

The Vintage Caravan performed live @ relocated Bar 11
"Black Swan"

June 21, 2011

Hjaltalín "Feels like sugar" Official Video

"Feels like sugar", a song from their 2nd album "Terminal" 
Directed by Rúnar Ingi Einarsson
Produced by Rebekka Bryndís Björnsdóttir & Steinþór Helgi Arnsteinsson
Edited by Sigurður Eyþórsson
DOP by Víðir Sigurðsson

June 20, 2011

Hellvar "Give me gold" Live @ Logi í beinni (2008)

Hellvar performed a song Live @ the TV Program Logi í beinni back in January 2008
"Give me gold",  a song from their debut album "Bat out of Hellvar" (Kimi Records, 2007)
Buy the album @ Gogoyoko
Their new album "Stop that noise" will be released in July 2011 on Kimi.

Hellvar Fanpage

Mógil on Tour around Iceland

Mógil Tour Details
3. July @ Gljúfrasteinn @ 16:00 More info
4. July @ Café Rósenberg @ 21:00 More info
5. July @ Fríkirkjan í Reykjavík for the official CD Release Concert @ 20:00
6. July @ Folk festival @ Siglufjörður @ 21:30 More info
7. July @ Deiglan @ Akureyri @ 21:00

Retro Stefson @ Ja Ja Ja Music @ London - The Line of Best Fit Video

Retro Stefson performed @ last month's Ja Ja Ja Music night @ Lexington, London

June 18, 2011

Keren Ann Zeidel & Barði Jóhannsson creating Gothic Opera "Red Waters"

2 Day Master Class of the Duo Keren Ann Zeidel & Barði Jóhannsson (aka Lady & Bird)
Here is a Video made while they were working on the Gothic Opera "Red Waters" for the Theatre National d'Orleans.
An association of l'Astrolabe & le Centre Dramatique National Orléans

Back to the 90's: Bang Gang in Popp í Reykjavík (1998)

Bang Gang in documentary Popp í Reykjavík

Back to the 80's: The Elgar Sisters "Green" (1986)

The Elgar Sisters
"Green Song" performed by G. K. Óttarsson (GKÓ), Björk, Siggi Baldursson, Birgir Mogensen & Einar Melax

Ghostigital & Finnbogi Pétursson Live @ The Morning Line, Schwarzenbergplatz, Vienna (2011) - More Videos

Ghostigital & Finnbogi Pétursson @ Schwarzenbergplatz, Vienna (10. June 2011)
Part 1

Part 2


Singapore Sling "Saul" Unofficial Video

Singapore Sling
"Saul", a song from their album "Taste the blood of Singapore Sling" (Stepstone/12Tonar, 2005)

Back to the 90's: Spoon feat. Emiliana Torrini "Taboo", "Brazilian Sky" & "Tomorrow" Videos

Spoon feat. Emiliana Torrini on vocals

"Brazilian Sky"


Emiliana Torrini

Sigtryggur (Siggi) Baldursson on drums

Sigtryggur Baldursson, drummer of Þeyr, KUKL, The Sugarcubes, Steintryggur, ...
Part 1

Part 2

Ljótu Hálfvitarnir on Icelandic TV

Ljótu Hálfvitarnir (Ugly Idiots)

Upcoming gigs in Reykjavík in June 2011 - Final Update

Route 101  
Where to go the next weeks to enjoy some live music downtown 101 Reykjavík?
I suggest you enjoy some local DJ's.

Saturday 18. June 2011   
GusGus Release Concert "Arabian Horse" @ NASA  @ 20:00 & 00:00
Orphic Oxtra, Nolo, Waiters & Bellboys og The Noise Revival Orchestra (US) @ Faktorý @ 22:00
Smashing Pumpkins Tribute Concert  @ Sódóma Reykjavík @ 23:00 (1000 IKR)
Band members are Bjarni Þór Jensson (Cliff Clavin), Franz Gunnarsson (Ensími - Dr. Spock), Helgi Rúnar Gunnarsson (Benny Crespo´s Gang), Þórhallur Stefánsson (Lights On The Highway), Jón Svanur Sveinsson (Hoffman), Roland Hartwell & friends of Sinfóníuhljómsveit Íslands
Tuesday 21. June 2011
Ólöf Arnalds @ Café Flóru @ 22:00 (2000 IKR)
Wednesday 22. June 2011
Sleepless in Reykjavik Concert @ Hvíta Perlan @ 21:00
Endless Dark + special guests @ Sódóma @ 22:00 (2000 IKR) 
Friday 24. June 2011
DJ Biggi Maus @ Boston @ 22:00
DJ Alfons X @ Kaffibarinn @ 23:00  
Hellvar, Nóra, Vigri @ Faktorý @ 23:00
Hellvar's "Nowhere" @ Rehearsal space

Grapevine Grassroots # 29 @ Hemmi & Valdi @ 21:00
Saturday 25. June 2011
KK @ Café Rosenberg @ 22:00
Sólstafir & Dimma @ Sódóma @ 00:00 (1000 IKR)
Wednesday 29. June 2011
Sleepless in Reykjavik Concert @ Hvíta Perlan @ 21:00
Kippi Kaninus, Sudden Weather Change & Skakamanage @ Bakkus @ 21:00 (Free Admission)
Thursday 30. June 2011
Kreppa Night with Vicky @ Bar 11 @ 22:00

Hafdís Huld "Oldest Friend" Live @ Balcony TV

 Hafdís Huld @ Balcony TV
"Oldest friend"
of her second album "Synchronised swimmers"

Hafdís Huld's Site

Song of the 220. Week is 1860's "Snæfellsnes" - The Videos

220. Song of the Week is by indie folk band 1860 and is called "Snæfellsnes".
1860 - Snæfellsnes by Pacific Air

In Studio 12 of RÚV

"Allra veðra von"

"Love and lime"

Kippi Kaninus "Schpick" Live @ Sódóma Reykjavík Video (May 2011)

Kippi Kaninus & band (Pétur Ben, Magnus Trygvason Eliassen, Sigtryggur Baldursson & Ingi Gardar Erlendsson) Live @ Sódóma Reykjavík

Schpick from Kippi Kaninus
Kippi Kaninus

June 17, 2011

Bloodgroup & Agent Fresco Summer Tours

Bloodgroup Tour Details:
03.07.11 D Berlin, Magnet (+ Hannes Smith)
05.07.11 PL Poznan, Malta Festival (+ Hannes Smith)
06.07.11 PL Warsaw, Sen Pszczoly (+ Hannes Smith)
07.07.11 PL Nowy Sacz, Spózniony Slowik
09.07.11 SK Trencin, Pohoda Festival
12.07.11 D Hamburg, Astra Stube (+ Hannes Smith)
13.07.11 D Dresden, Schaubudensommer @ Scheune
14.07.11 D Wiesbaden, Schlachthof (+ Tu Fawning)
15.07.11 D Karlsruhe, Kohi
16.07.11 D Bremen, Treue

European Tour Dates of Agent Fresco:
16.06.11 D  COLOGNE, Sonic Ballroom
17.06.11 CH THUN, Cafe Bar Mokka
18.06.11 CZ VOLYNE, Koupák Smack Fest
20.06.11 SK KOSICE, Tabacka Kulturfabrik
21.06.11 PL WROCLAW, Puzzle
22.06.11 D ERFURT, Stadtgarten
23.06.11 A  DORNBIRN, Kulturcafé Schlachthaus
24.06.11 CH SIRSEE, Kulturwerk 118
25.06.11 D  SOLINGEN, Waldmeister
26.06.11 D   SOLINGEN, exclusive acoustic show @ Waldmeister
27.06.11 NL  HEEMSKERK, Café Lokaal
29.06.11 DK ROSKILDE Festival
02.07.11 D BERLIN, Festsaal Kreuzberg
04.07.11 D  FRANKFURT, Das Bett

Bárujárn "ChaChaCha" Video

ChaChaCha from Bárujárn

GusGus & FM Belfast go Twin Peaks for Grapevine Magazine Cover (# 8)

TWIN PEAKS from Alísa Kalyanova

Snorri Helgason's New Single "River" of his 2. Album "Winter Sun"

First single from Snorri Helgason's new album "Winter Sun", to be released in Iceland on 20. July on Kimi Records Label. Music and lyrics by Snorri Helgason. Produced by Sindri Már Sigfússon of Seabear & Sin Fang.
Snorri Helgason: Guitar, vocals & percussion.
Guðmundur Óskar Guðmundsson: Bass
Sóley Stefánsdóttir: Piano
Sigurlaug Gísladóttir: Vocals
River (single version) by Snorri Helgason
Snorri Helgason's Website

June 15, 2011

Daníel Ágúst in the Spotlight @ IMX

Daníel Ágúst
Daníel Ágúst is one of the instigators and band leaders of GusGus, Nýdönsk and Esja and is an active songwriter in all of them as well as tending to his own solo career. The Drift is his second solo album. It's quite different from "Swallowed A Star" where he portrayed his romantic side with blissful mini symphonies. There is a more traditional rock band setup on "The Drift", which features a bunch of great musicians who create a mesmerizing ambient blues rock frame around Daniel's straight-from-the-heart stories of his emotional life. There is a variety of moods and feelings in the songs where he jumps from being heavily melancholic to extremely happy.
The first single is "Yeah Yeah Yeah" a happy-in-love song that's been prominent on the radio for a few weeks.

The album has gotten two 4 out of 5 reviews in the Icelandic media and the release concert was awarded 10 (out of 5) stars on the state owned radio station. The Drift is released on Hands Up Music and distributed by Sena
It took a while to follow up from Swallowed A Star - what have you been doing in between?
I’ve had a baby and made a couple of GusGus albums...
The record is a pretty different fish from the debut -- was that intentional or just the way it came out?

I was quite sure about rowing in different waters with this one. Initially I was going to make a whole album with just acoustic guitar and vocals but having finished that version I knew I was far too lustful and greedy to let it go just like that and my friend from Nýdönsk, Jón Ólafsson, invited me to record some drums and synths in his garage. The blending of the synths and acoustic elements came natural to me having experienced both electronic and organic music making...
You've formed a band this time around -- who's in it and what do they do?
Well it’s Jón who plays all the synth-bass and keyboard synths on the record, then there’s Stefán Már who plays drums and conjures all the electric guitar sounds, a true genius. Playing live I’ve got my friend Krummi (from Mínus) on percussion, Gummi Péturs who plays the electric live but played most of the acoustic guitars on the album. Then there’s Bjarni Sigurðarson (from Mínus) who also laid down a few guitar tracks on the acoustic version and then there’s Birgir Ísleifur (of Motion Boys) who plays all the keyboards meticulously live.
What made you go in a blues rock direction?
I saw it as a convenient departure from all the tight string orchestral arrangements I’d made for Swallowed A Star. In this environment it’s much easier to let things go in a more spontaneous flow.
It's a pretty personal album...
It pretty much touches on nearly every part of my rollercoaster life the past few years, whether it being exercises in happiness, depression, insanity, moments of despair, narcissism or silliness.
Is working on solo stuff a whole different process to the GusGus stuff...?
The process of songwriting is not that different from when writing songs with or for GusGus, Esja, Nýdönsk or anyone else for that matter, as I put everything in the emotional grinder every time. It just ends up in various different environments.
Does GusGus ever get in the way of your solo stuff, or the other way around, or do they complement each other?
Doing a solo album for me is like masturbation. It’s healthy for a creative person to explore and carry out fantasies and not suppress them or squeeze them into a single outlet. It doesn’t get in the way of my steady relationship with the boys : )
I'm sure I heard a cover from 24/7 on the album...
What you heard on the The Drift is a tune I wrote five years prior to it’s first release on the GusGus album 24/7 where the name of the song is “Thin Ice”. I had written it when dealing with infidelity in my relationship and the boys liked it so we chose it to be on the album. On my solo album it’s called “Feel Like Dancing”, which actually was the original title of the song...
What are your plans now the album's done? Some touring maybe? With the whole band?
I already played a release concert in a small theatre, Tjarnarbíó, which was great and then again in Akureyri in a similar size but cozier place, Græni hatturinn, where I was much livelier and the performance was even greater. I’m quite wrapped up in GusGus stuff at the moment, but I am looking forward to playing my solo stuff again with the incredible band I’ve got.

Music Alliance Pact (MAP) # 33 (June 2011)

It's time for the 33rd I love Icelandic music/Icelandic Music Maffia contribution to an international initiative, the Music Alliance Pact, aka MAP. I take part in this Blog Alliance since the start in October 2008. On a monthly basis music bloggers from around the globe select a track from their country which is then posted collectively and simultaneously on those blogs - giving each nation's track international exposure.
A trip around the world in 36 songs with a take off in Iceland:
This month I contributed the song "Lived" by Morning After Youth

To download all 36 songs in one file click here

ARGENTINA: Zonaindie
Marcelo Ezquiaga - El Gaucho Vive y Muere En Su Ley
Although Hombre Golpe is his second album as a solo artist, Marcelo Ezquiaga's career started with a musical project called Mi Tortuga Montreaux, which gave us three amazing records between 2003 and 2006. El Gaucho Vive y Muere En Su Ley is one of our favorite songs from this new work, which comprises his acoustic-pop signature with strong melodies and fine arrangements. As he likes to say: rock without guitars.

AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They?
Mildlife - Milk & Wool
Milk & Wool is a sweet jam and the first we've heard from Mildlife - a new loose, electronic outfit from Melbourne. It's a good sign from a band that manages to mix light and dark with interesting production and a strong pop sensibility.

BRAZIL: Meio Desligado
Eskimo - Cavalo De Fogo
It's hard to define Cavalo De Fogo, the first single from Eskimo's debut album. The breadth of genres covered, including pop and alternative, results in some intriguing music. One of the highlights of the current Brazilian indie scene.

CANADA: I(Heart)Music
Socalled - Work With What You Got
Hip-hop? Klezmer? Folk? Pop? Gospel? Some insane, wonderful combination of all of that (and then some)? There's so much going on on Socalled's newest album, Sleepover, that I have no idea how I'd classify it. Oh wait, I do: as a simply great album. Work With What You Got captures the album's sense of fun, but only shows a fraction of the wide range of genres it displays.

CHILE: Super 45
Adrianigual - Arde Santiago
After a four-year break, Adrianigual is back. Big time. Their new album, …xito Mundial (released on Sello Cazador), is a punk-hearted but dancefloor-driven collection of feverish songs. Arde Santiago is their second single.

CHINA: Wooozy
AM444 - Eye Wonder
AM444 is the Shanghai-based project of singer ChaCha (Kode9, Clive Chin, Jimi Tenor, Desto, etc) and Dutch producer/DJ Jay.Soul (Mr. Windmill & Jay.Soul, Sole Profit, Cecilia Stalin, etc). After years of thoughts, discussions and drunken promises, the pair have finally been in the studio for the past few months and the result is their eight-song debut release Eye Wonder. It's a jazzy, funked up, dubbed out Chinese language sonic assault and some of the most exciting music to come out of Shanghai in a while, already receiving radio play in London, LA, Europe and around Asia. Eye Wonder is a landmark release for Chinese underground music.

COLOMBIA: Colombia Urbana
Marita - PequeÒa
Marita has been writing lyrics since she was a little girl, although she never knew where they would end up. The single PequeÒa ("Little Girl") is a resume of her own history and a good illustration of her electro-rock sound.

DENMARK: All Scandinavian
Why Don't We Love Lucy - With You
In March, Danish/Norwegian quartet Why Don't We Love Lucy released their debut EP, CPH-OSL, which serves up foot-moving club-funk-pop (slap bass included) with a light ring of the 80s and 90s to the five catchy tracks. A new EP is in the works, with a release planned for this autumn, but here's the excellent With You from the debut for you to enjoy.

ENGLAND: The Guardian Music Blog
Leopard Of Honour - Teenage Fantod
David Roocroft is a Manchester boy who calls himself Leopard Of Honour and, like Oxford's Chad Valley, counts himself as one of the British musicians doing similar things with synths and samplers to America's chillwave artists such as Washed Out and Toro Y Moi. His instrumental Teenage Fantod, named after a "an archaic phrase for quivery anxiety used a lot by David Foster Wallace", was described as "effortlessly lovely and languid" in a recent New Band of the Day column, adding that it was "pop music with experimental urges and precious little retro intent".

Barthol Lo Mejor - Pick Up Track
You've partied but not this wild! Barthol Lo Mejor jumpstarts your night with trash electro. It sounds fresh, upbeat and raw like Justice, MSTRKRFT and Huoratron. His performance drives you further, guiding you with his signature sound and bouncing around in a flashy outfit to provide vanity, energy and edge. Don't just listen, but enjoy it all.

Satellite Stories - Family
These four young lads from the Arctic city of Oulu play music to bring you nostalgia from events you never really experienced, like the 60s, the first kiss from your elementary school crush and the time you and your best friend bought that awesome 45 single and listened it on your parents' record player. Satellite Stories bring all these feelings with cheerful and fast-paced indie music influenced by Vampire Weekend and The Wombats.

FRANCE: Yet You're Fired
Mondrian - Or Unicorn
Mondrian are a young Parisian pop band formed in 2007. After releasing their first EP last year, Popshop, they dropped another one, Whippersnapper, just a month ago. Catchy beats, fresh voices and a talent for writing will surely bring them some success. They take everything that's good in pop to make the best out of it, creating addictive and lovely songs with a high repeat listen potential.

GERMANY: Blogpartei
Petula - Wives
Where have they been all these years, playful electro-inspired German artists writing and reinterpreting great songs? Berlin-based Petula definitely is one of those with a wide and emphatic spectrum of styles. Wives is a wary, slightly more uptempo, more electronic cover of a Savoy Grand song. It has just been released on a split EP with all-girl band Candelilla.

GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda
Gravitysays_i - The Urge Of Identity / The Figures Of Enormous Grey
It's hard not to stare in open-mouthed amazement at the sheer brilliance of Gravitysays_i's superbly executed, intensely creative and nearly flawless sophomore album, The Figures Of Enormous Grey And The Patterns Of Fraud. They bring together experimental, dark, atmospheric elements along with Greek and Eastern traditional music and examine social values, institutions and morality as an extension of individual, as well as collective, conscience with an emotional clarity and narrative acuity that makes it an undeniable triumph.

ICELAND: Icelandic Music Maffia
Morning After Youth - Lived
Morning After Youth is a four-piece band with a smooth and artsy sound to their music. They are working on their first album which will hopefully be ready this summer. Lived was recorded in the famous Studio
Sýrland with Adda 800 and Börkur.

INDIA: Indiecision
Goddess Gagged - Visionary
Goddess Gagged is a metal band from Mumbai. The band channel melodic post-hardcore in the vein of acts like Architects and Alexisonfire, a foundation given legs by frontman Siddharth Basrur's almost effervescent vocal delivery. Visionary is a new track, presumably from the band's upcoming debut album. We suggest you keep your eyes and ears open for that.

INDONESIA: Deathrockstar
Polyester Embassy - Space Travel Rock N Roll
Polyester Embassy have a deep affection for noises, sounds and a vintage synthesizer. After years of experimenting, they're bringing out a second album which sounds like Pink Floyd/Flaming Lips/Mogwai/Ride/Spiritualized mixed raw into their own characteristic.

IRELAND: Nialler9
Ghost Estates - Paris
The members of the newly-formed Ghost Estates were previously of two pretty different bands SickBoy and 8Ball. Their new band may be named "after the thousands of abandoned housing estates built in Ireland during the Celtic Tiger boom years" but there's plenty going on in their music, from 80s guitar to processed beats to a spoken word interludes and, I kid you not, a treated saxophone solo.

ISRAEL: Metal Israel
Sumo Elevator - Pedal Horse
Sumo Elevator is a group of five ex-metalheads with short hair mixing prog-rock/metal, electronica jazz and breakbeat into intense atmospheric electro-fusion pop-rock. Their eclectic line-up consists of traditional rock/jazz instruments (electric guitar, bass guitar and acoustic drums) and turntables, noise boxes, samplers and modern synthesizers. With two years of live performance and studio experience under their belts, Sumo Elevator is about to release a full-length album in 2011 called Breakfast, which Pedal Horse is taken from.

ITALY: Polaroid
Karibean - We Need The Sun
First day at the sea, the sun is shining, friends all around, Beach Boys playing on the jukebox, see The Housemartins on a surf, meet Vampire Weekend at the bar. It's all just perfect. One last thing: go here and download Karibean's free debut EP. It would be the icing on the cake.

MEXICO: Red Bull PanameriKa
Pellejos - Abuelita
Take some inspiration from Jack Kerouac's Mexico City Blues and recite it on a cantina filled with the country's intellectual crËme de la crËme, then leave them dumbfounded with the evocation of images of decay, corruption and nihilism. Pellejos started in 2005 when some refusing-to-age contemporary art-farts took a late chance to form a band led by visual artist (now bassist) Daniel Guzm·n. What seemed to be just some art-wank has endured six years of sporadic gigs that led to bear a (rotten) fruit with a debut LP - a fetid collection of ethylic spoken word from the hoarse mouth of vocalist Ignacio Perales, backed by what sounds like Tindersticks from the Third World. Abuelita is just a random nonsense collection of excuses to fall back into old patterns of drinking. Cheers!

NETHERLANDS: Unfold Amsterdam
Skip & Die - La Cumbia Dictadura
Skip & Die is a Netherlands-based outfit that began as a globally-infused collaboration between South African vocalist/visual artist Cata.Pirata and producer Jori Collignon (also of Dutch electronic experimentalists C-Mon & Kypski and Nobody Beats The Drum), although these days they're a fully-fledged live band. Via their travels through the towns and cities of South Africa, they've forged a contemporary and vibrant wall of sound that mixes electro, hip hop, Afrobeat and South American grooves. While specialising in sexy party bass hits that remind at times of Diplo's Major Lazer, there's always a more considered side to their art than simply noise and dance as Music Alliance Pact exclusive La Cumbia Dictadura shows.

NEW ZEALAND: Einstein Music Journal
Cool Cult - Skulls
New Zealand's best young exponents of shoegaze styled no-wave. Described by UK music blog Sonic Masala as "beautifully formed nuggets of sound that are brimming with exuberance and ebullience", Cool Cult's noisy rhetoric is a mixture of early Deerhunter and discordant Canadian punk wizards Women. Their debut album Try Crunch is full of carcinogenic guitar hooks and elegant vocal melodies, with a refreshingly mature approach to constructing traditional pop music. Skulls is the band's first single, featuring an observantly sleepy vocal melody overwhelmed by a crushing wave of distorted guitar.

NORWAY: Birds Sometimes Dance
Ihab - ∆ MÂ FÊr
Who would have thought that Bod¯, a small city in northern Norway, would harbor so much good indie. So far there's Cold Mailman, Kollwitz, KrÂkes¯lv and now Gabriel and Ihab, both on newly started Beyond Records. Ihab make quirky indie-rock reminiscent of 90s heroes like Pavement and Built To Spill as well as newer bands like Cymbal Eat Guitars and Algernon Cadwallader.

Iv·n Fajardo - Calma
Iv·n Fajardo is a constant in the musical innovation of Lima. In the first edition of MAP in October 2008, we had ERA, his band at that time. More recently Ivan has been working alone. Calma is the first preview of his new direction and is accompanied by a video that combines well the relaxed mood of the song. Iv·n Fajardo is recording a video for his next single, which is worth keeping an eye out for.

PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco?
Kubik - Shina-Kak
Victor Afonso, a musician, music teacher and cinephile, had his first release as Kubik in 1999. Since then he has had a steady flow of releases and collaborations. His great love for cinema and music for films shows in his work. His talent has been recognized by artists such as Mike Patton, who invited him to open for FantÙmas. Shina-Kak is an exclusive download for MAP, taken from  Psicotic Jazz Hall, which has just been released.

ROMANIA: Babylon Noise
Toulouse Lautrec - Yesman
With a name that recalls the famous French painter, the Bucharest trio started in 2009 as an alternative rock band with post-punk flavours. Although their image in the Romanian media is promoted through neo-Dadaist elements, there is nothing absurd in their music. The prominent basslines and the upfront beats remind me of Editors but without those dark guitar riffs. Whimsical and witty, Toulouse Lautrec is what you need now to give your day a push.

Song Of Return - Trajectory
Trajectory simmers menacingly in a premeditated assault to the senses for two minutes before the drums crash in like a lightning strike and you very quickly realise your Facebook 'like' button just isn't going to suffice. The Glasgow-based alternative dance band (who will appeal to fans of Delphic) is fronted by Craig Grant, formerly of Union Of Knives, and also features Louis Abbott, singer of Admiral Fallow, one of this country's best new bands.

SINGAPORE: I'm Waking Up To...
Humming Kitten - Monochrome
Little is known of Humming Kitten, and we get the impression they'd like to keep it that way. It is a little disconcerting at first, approaching this musical project without any preconceived ideas of who or what the band members are, and appreciating their musical ideas purely at face value and on first impressions. However, once you soak it all in, you might feel that they've been there all along, lurking at your blogs or gigs. Revealing the chief conspirator as an entity known as Keyboard Cat, and that they favour a lo-fi noise-pop approach to their pieces, Humming Kitten ultimately sound so lonely with solitude as their ally.

SOUTH AFRICA: Musical Mover & Shaker!
Simfonika Island - African Sunset
Simfonika Island is a project made up of two very talented individuals, Gianni Capri and Donny Halo. Both have diverse musical backgrounds, one from a very DJ-orientated world and one from a band. With African Sunset comes a song that crosses South African house with the influences of house music from New York City and Europe, all accompanied with some stirring piano and a dash of deep groove. It's magical.

Pigibit5 - Y.O.N.H.A
Sweet indie-pop act Pigibit5 claims kitsch to be the best description of its music, which is heavily based around a twee-pop and chamber-pop sound, also citing influences from folk and hard rock. The band is what remains of Pirigwa - where Ireland's So Cow on occasion could be found playing an instrument or two - and the members have returned to their former label, Beatball, with the release of first full-length album Cherryboy Revolution a few weeks ago. Y.O.N.H.A is a cheerful tune with a retro pop sound.

SPAIN: Musikorner
Fur Voice - Wimp
Fur Voice is the stage name of David Gracia, an actor and singer born in Murcia and living in Barcelona since 2006. Inspired by electronic and psychedelic acts such as Grizzly Bear and Animal Collective, Fur Voice builds a dark extraterrestrial atmosphere in his debut album, Onto Endo (self-produced and self-released). The first single off Onto Endo, Wimp, takes the best from noise, post-rock and psychedelia and turns it into a dreamy, catchy, epic tune with an ending that leaves you wanting more.

SWEDEN: Swedesplease
BitRobot - She's An Android
I'm always on the lookout for 8bit pop or C64 stuff. I've heard a lot over the years but still don't consider myself an expert. Still, from my perspective this new record from BitRobot called Nebula, which She's An Android is taken from, does something I haven't yet heard. He personalizes the music, taking a completely computer-based sub-genre and gives it a touch of humanity.

Huck Finn - Sofia
Huck Finn is the moniker of two singer-songwriters who teamed up for a project. Four years ago they won a few music prizes in Switzerland but they struggled to deliver a proper record. On the second attempt they succeeded. Breaking In, their debut album, is bombastic and emotional at the same time. Sofia, their first radio single, will make you weep like a dog.

UNITED STATES: I Guess I'm Floating
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. - Morning Thought
The Detroit duo released their full-length debut, It's A Corporate World, earlier this month, just in time for summer. It's the perfect season for this record too, full of catchy guitar riffs, melodious vocal harmonies and an added layer of production missing from their earlier works. Morning Thought hops along with glitchy effects, handclaps and enough thoughtful xylophone to keep wandering ears at bay.

VENEZUELA: M˙sica y M·s
Elefreak feat. El Prieto - RockMafia
In Venezuela, not many rock and rap bands interact. But a couple of months ago, one of the most iconic rock bands, Elefreak, coupled with one of the great exponents of hip hop in the country and created RockMafia, a song loaded with great strength and lyrics that leave a message of reflection. Elefreak's nine-track record can be downloaded for free from their website.