How to collect Nordic pop music, part seven: the Icelandic course

We’ve (almost) reached the end of this seven-week series on Nordic pop, and this time we land in Iceland. It’s interesting, this: the country’s physically isolated from most of the world, even its Nordic neighbors (although you can argue Greenland is Denmark, and they’re closer there). That’s meant the country’s had a chance to evolve its culture on its own terms. Just think of Björk, who we wrote about a few weeks back. But also, her musical journey’s involved a lot of genres: in recent decades the country’s also seen its fair share of outside influences, and yet its music is, in a way, distinctly Icelandic.

Continue reading

“Hoppípolla í engum stígvélum.”

“Hoppípolla” by Sigur Rós | Who doesn’t like this song? It’s innocent and serene and, yet, sad at the same time. Unfortunately I never managed to latch on to the rest of Sigur Rós’ material, although Jonsi’s vocal is still a sound to behold. Anyway, today’s Good Friday, where Catholics commemorate, in Triple J’s deadpan fashion, “a crucifixion,” one that reached its climax at three in the afternoon. In other words, right now. And to mark that moment I always play this song, because it’s innocent and serene and, yet, sad at the same time. The We Are Scientists cover may be good, but it doesn’t match up to that soaring feeling the original gives.