The Yule Cat is coming!

The Yule Cat, or Jólakötturinn, is a fearsome thing. Icelandic folklore has it that anyone not dressed from top to toe in new clothes by Christmas would be quickly eaten up by the vicious cat. Whether it’s a story made up to encourage slovenly farm workers to knit garments faster in the run up to […]

Who the hell is Lily The Kid?

Every now and then a concert comes along that changes the course of everything that follows it. At Iceland Airwaves this year, that concert was Lily The Kid at Slippbarinn. Following a completely pleasant start to the festival, Lily The Kid provided the unofficial announcement that Airwaves was finally here. They bought the party. Lily […]

ICE-SAR. Keeping Iceland safe since 1918.

If you visited Airwaves this year, you couldn’t have missed the proliferation of brightly uniformed ICE-SAR (Iceland Search & Rescue) volunteers selling charity key rings on the streets of Reykjavik. They even covered all entrances to Harpa on the busy Friday night of the festival. I bought one; I buy one most years. Not only […]

Lily The Kid

One of the best acts I saw at Airwaves ’14 was Lily the Kid. I saw them at Slippbarinn, where the acts were consistently good, and the beer was cold. They arrived on stage with a bundle of enthusiasm, with Lilja dancing like a girl possessed. The music is powerful, danceable pop delivered with passion […]

Airwaves ’14 – Day 4. Dancing Feet.

Rökkurró are at the Nordic House. It’s 2 pm so the band are a little less hyped, and possibly a little more hungover then when I caught them on Day 2. It’s their 4th show of the festival, so its understandable. They perform a set of Innra songs, including the wonderful ‘Blue Skies’ which is […]

Airwaves ’14 – Day 3. Stolen Hearts.

ÍRiS is first one up at the Nordic House. She is accompanied today by a band of two, playing variously a cello, saw, drum and one of things that you whirled round your head as a kid. ‘Sea Song’ and ‘Day Break’ stand out, and she even switches to French for one song. Her new […]

Airwaves ’14 – Day 2. Flying Dragons.

Árstíðir are as serious and melodramatic as ever over at Kex, so I head to Lucky Records for Ingunn Huld, who is in fine form. Just her and an acoustic guitar, she plays one song after another, each more pretty than the last, ending with the sweet ‘Splendid.’ I love discovering new artists at Airwaves. […]

Airwaves ’14 – Day 1. Boy Wonder.

I spent most of the set either peering round the doorway of Kex, jammed in like an Icelandic mackerel, but Kiasmos are the first big deal of Airwaves. The side project and dance outlet of Ólafur Arnalds and Janus Rasmussen provides a platform for both lads to show what can be achieved by pairing intelligence […]