When Medúlla came out I was totally astonished by it. Whole album full of only "accapella" well you canät really say accapella, but use voice as the only tool without any instruments. It's an extremely demanding things to succeed in. I didn't actually listen it so much but loved songs like "Mouth's cradle", "Vökuró" which is amazingly beautiful and touching song and the small song "Miðvikudags".
When Volta came it brought again totally new kind of Björk. There was a beautiful collaboration in "The dull flame of desire" with Antony Hegarty from Antony and The Johnsons. The beginning trumpets of"Vertebrae by vertebrae" were great. I had strangely always this feeling of a harbor or sailing when I was listening to Volta. "Declare Independence" became the biggest media hype of the album, when Björk sung it in China with "...Tibet, Tibet, don't let them do that to you.." lyrics.
For me Björk has been always one of the artists who has experimented the most with their music. They are always on search for something new.
Now Björk is busy with a new album called Biophilia that will air still 2011. She is researching the similarities in structure and shapes between nature and music in the coming album, so I'm really curious how it will be. There is already single "Crystalline" out from the forthcoming album. It has some nice beats of drum 'n' bass also in!
Björk was just the first artist I got to know from Iceland. It turned out that Iceland is the promised land of beautiful music.
I bought an album of Múm "Summer make good" in 2004. It was recorded in a lighthouse and I totally lost myself for the album. The album was haunted and sweet at the same time. The vocals sounded very strange first, but it totally fitted to the album. Some of most touching songs was "Weeping Rock, Rock" with dark strong bass in it. "The Island of Children's Children" was the small bundle on light in middle of dark. In 2002 released "Finally we are no one" was also a great album with songs like "Green Grass of tunnel", "Don't be afraid, You have just got your eyes closed" and "I can't feel my hand anymore, It's alright, Sleep still". Samuli Kosminen known also from playing together with Kimmo Pohjonen, was also collaborating in Múms albums, where he was doing percussions.
In 2007 they released "Go go smear the poison ivy" that was much happier album which I totally loved and I got to see then band live also and got all the signatures to the sweet cover of the album! "Rhubarbidoo", "They made frogs smoke 'til they exploded" and "Dancing behind my eyelids" are just part of the happines of this album. I personally loved this album even more, because it didn't go so overwhelmingly dark as "Summer make good".
Theirs latest album from 2009 is "Sing along to songs you don't know". I haven't yet listened to this album, only couple songs, but it seems to go more for a new fresh direction. Some great songs from the album are "The smell of today is sweet like breast milk in the wind"...love the electric guitar in it that you don't hear often with Múm, and "Prophecies & Reverse".
Check out Múm here http://mum.is/
Sóley is another amazing band from Iceland that I just discovered. Be careful with typing the name right, otherwise you don't find the right band. Don't know so much from the band except it makes beautiful music and they have amazing vocalist .
These songs captured me...
"Kill the Clown"
and "Read Your Book"
Check out more of their music from their Myspace http://www.myspace.com/ssoolleeyy
Rökkurró I found also last weekend and like them so much already. They have also amazing vocalist Hildur Kristín Stefánsdóttir.Það Kólnar Í Kvöld" translated "It's getting colder tonight" was released 2007.
Here's the beautiful video of "Sólin mun skína".
And one very special is "Svanur".
And the Myspace of the band http://www.myspace.com/rokkurro
Amiina, also from Iceland! Great! It was originally a string quartet of four girls. Edda rún ólafsdóttir, hildur ársælsdóttir, maría huld markan sigfúsdóttir and sólrún sumarliðadóttir. Sorry for the small capitals, something went wrong with my keybord. But now the band is a sextet because they got addition of two guys.
Amiina's debut album was "kurr" (2007). Their newest album, released in 2010 is "Puzzle". Some great pieces from them are, I haven't listened them yet enough but here's only two other faves "Hilli" and "Bláfeldur" "Lóri". I think I could just honestly say the whole production of them, even though I have listened under ten songs from them!
Find more about Amiina at their homepage http://amiina.com/
And yes, how can you talk about Icelandic music without mentioning Sigur Rós the band.
But I leave some search for you. I want to to end the Icelandic post with a music video "Viorar Vel Til Loftarasa".
I want to go Iceland some day.