Sigur Rós, the band of bands, will be releasing a brand new single called Ekki Múkk in April (April 23rd in Sweden). The release will be a vinyl 7". This might be the first we hear of their new, supposedly more ambient album, which features songs co-written by composer arranger Daníel Bjarnason.
Check out Daníel Bjarnason HERE.
The song title Ekki Múkk means, according to google translate, "No Seagull", but in reality it is an expression meaning pretty much "not a peep"/"not a sound", as in "Don't say a bloody thing". The thought occurs that the title has been chosen deliberatly by the band so that they can mock journalists by saying "it means nothing at all" and watch the confusion unfold with endless nonsense about hopelandic, melting glaciers and inspiration of dramatic landscapes. Icelandic can often be confusing to translate. For instance with the 2005 track Glósóli, many people assumed it meant "Glowing sun" but in the end it turned out to mean "Glowing sole". Later in an interview Jónsi explained that it was about "someone with a glowing [soul]". The interviewer gasped before Jónsi added "Like the sole of a shoe"...
We will be back with more info on this for sure!
Edit: This release might be a special for Record Store Day, and may not be a song from the coming album. But what we know is that it's an official release from Capitol Records/EMI and that it will be out on April 23rd in all the Nordic countries.
Philippe Bronchtein is from supposed hipster mecca (there are so many these days) Portland, Oregon. Under the name Hip Hatchet he makes country-folk somewhere in the tradition of Kris Kristofferson and Johnny Cash but with a bit more modern but completely acoustic arrangements. I guess that is quite rare these days, to do "folk" without autotune, synths and/or a full guitar band and two drummers, but most of all, to rely on the tradition when it comes to the actual vocals and not sliding out into a medley of soul and Phil Collins. Hip Hatchet gets away with being this slight anacronism probably due to talent; some truly great guitar-arrangements and innovative songwriting underneath all the folk business. What makes the Quack melt entirely is the backing band of clarinet, horn and down-mixed strings, always keeping the guitar at the front, for instance on the track Wild Plants on last years LP Men Who Share My Name:
If we compare him to our Swedish folk hero Tallest Man On Earth (which I know is unfare to both of them) I guess one could say that this is folk which doesn't need the scream to make its point. Anyways, the first track posted above, Sing Me A Reprise, is the teaser from the coming album Joy And Better Days which will be well worth checking out.
Gothenburg is buzzing! In the near future singer Gustav Svedung is releasing his debut EP Rather Be Singing Than Thinking from solo project Gus By Heart, and he has given us a teaser with the song Hideous Sounds. This is a rather startling change for Gus, previously known as the singer in the alt-rock band My Closest Friend. With a heavy, reverbed piano at the core, guitar, wonderfully mixed drums and some cymbals played with a violin bow Svedung catapults into the air with his endearing and well-phrased vocals. The three-part song floats, rests, contemplates, does all kinds of things in the most wonderful way. We are looking forward to this EP and hopefully more in the future.
We will get back to you with release dates, spotifylinks and so on. For now, listen to this wonderful song!
These days when you can pretty much be infinitely creative, why not make an album trilogy about a family history spanning 150 years? Ben Cooper, the man behind Radical Face, most probably inspired by Sufjan's all states project, thinks it's a great idea, and so do we. The first album in the trilogy was released in October last year and we finally ran into it today. Smells of Elliott Smith and Iron & Wine, as well as Sufjan and some of Sigur Rós' poppiest moments and... well alot of bells are ringing at the same time. Basically this is the perfect soundtrack for laying in bed and waiting for ice to melt and birds to come back from Africa.