Tag Archives: legend

Legend

legend (origin of photo unknown)

Story has it that Legend began on a drunken night of brain-synced tomfoolery between two old friends in a studio which lead to the creation of the track ‘Devil in Me‘.  After finding its way quickly up the Icelandic charts, these friends, Krummi Björgvinsson and Halldór A Björnsson called themselves Legend, and created an album of winterishly dark and stormy synth-pop.

Krummi’s been on the scene for years, Probably most known for his band Mínus, the first Icelandic hardcore band I heard as a youngin’, and one of the first hardcore bands ever signed outside of the Icelandic realm.  He’s a busy man also known for his art, and his solo projects such as DÖPUR.  Halldór has done film and play soundtracks, as well as jingles for commercials.  He’s also an active producer and genius on the keys.  The two have been friends for quite sometime.  Previous to Legend, the two worked with Daníel Ágúst of GusGus on a country style project called Esja.

Some say there is a fine line that’s not to be crossed between Industrial pop-synth and heavy-industrial.  It’s refreshing to hear a band that calls bullshit on that theory and proves you can have both.  Their music reminds me of dark stormy Winter-ish days, yet there is a lighter side of pop floating in and out of the songs like moving clouds that threaten to reveal the sun every so often.  In my opinion, they have expertly crafted music that takes the best of both worlds creating the perfect stormy soundtrack.

fearless

Fearless, their first album, follows that interwoven, layered formula.  One gets the sense of dark, crisp, winter nights with darker songs, such as Sister, Fearless, and my favorite track with it’s deeper vocals, Violence:

And you have the lighter breath of fresh air moments, with the more pop-ish tracks such as Sudden Stop, Lust, and City which is one of the most pop tracks on the album:

The album ends with one of the lightest tracks on the album, Traveling blind, akin to the transition of winter into spring.  While I love the album, you have to see these guys live.  Krummi is a performer through and through, and puts on one hell of a gig.  Always high energy, always a little crazy, always fun.

legendlive

2015 is going to be an insane year for Legend and Co.  Legend is working on their second release,  DÖPUR and AMFJ are doing a split cassette, and Krummi’s new new project KÓBRAKAT is in the works.  If that isn’t enough, Mínus is hoping to finish an album they’ve been working on for 3 years with a hopeful release sometime in 2015.

You can follow Legend on Facebook, and listen to them on Soundcloud.  Krummi was nice enough to answer my 4 questions:

1. What is your favorite place to play at in Iceland? –I really don´t have a favorite place anymore because many venues have been closed down so they (bloodsucking yuppies) can build more hotels. These venues were so important for the music scene. It´s a shame but hopefully there will be new venues in the future, then maybe i will have a favorite place to play again.

2. If you combine all of your favorite colors (for you, add your band mates if you would), what do you get? –Black and Blue

3. What are 3 of your favorite little known bands of Icelandic origin? –Börn, Icarus and AMFJ

4. If you could be any creature playing your favorite song, what would the creature be? And what is the song. –I would be a recluse spider also known as Fiddle-backs playing Isolation by Iggy Pop.

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Readers choice, top 10 Icelandic bands

Last week I posted 15 bands I thought you should know.  The response to that blog was somewhat incredible in my little blog world.  Some of you are very, VERY, angry individuals, both towards the bands chosen as well as the person who’d dare pick some and leave others out.  And some of you came up with great alternatives or bands you wished were on it.

So in this post, I took the top suggestions you commented and emailed about, as well as a few more new bands I think you should check out.  As before, click on their name to find out more about them.  So, without further ado:

Agent Fresco

A good indie style rock back, akin to “At the Drive In” They’ve been in the scene since 2008, and are working on a new album as we speak.  A mellow style of math rock with creative licks and lyrics that seem to float over the top.

GusGus

GusGus is indeed a veteran  band of Iceland.  A little bit of trip-hop, a lot electronic, the band has been on the scene for almost 20 years.  Over the years, there have been many members, and those members have gone on to start production companies and other bands.  GusGus can count musicians such as Emilíana Torrini, and Daníel Ágúst amongst their ranks.  The above video is from the new Album Mexico, it’s a great album and I am currently working on a post about them, so stay tuned.

Reykjavik!

Reverent, conservative, Sunday morning driving music.  Yeahno, they’ve been around since Christ was a child, and their music is crassly clever, aggressive punk rock promoting whatever they want when they want to.  Oddly enough, on the East river walkway a few weeks ago, the song above came on, and as all the asshattedly good looking folks were surrounding me, it seemed the fitting soundtrack to my movie-like fantasty of tossing them into the river.  A lot of fun to hear live, and their massive catalog of albums is worthy of your attention.

Vigri

I’m actually quite glad a few people recommended this band.  A large contrast to Reykjavik!  Vigri is soothing, with floating lyrics over what on the surface appears to be mellow music.  But there’s a hidden intensity that creeps up on you.  I first saw them play two or so years ago, and last year at Airwaves I made everyone that came with me see the band at least once.  Not one person came back with bad things to say, even the grumpy metal guy.  I’m impatiently waiting patiently for the new album, the new material they played at Airwaves last year was fantastic.

 Legend

Mínus was the first hardcore Icelandic band I heard.  I believe it was Chimera off of the Fálkar soundtrack.  Legend is Krummi Björgvinsson from Mínus and keyboardist Halldor Björnsson.  It’s dark, sometimes industrial, sometimes rock, and it’s good, crazy good.  These guys are not to be missed live.

Pascal Pinon

I placed Samaris on the original list, one of the other projects by Jófríður Ákadóttir, but Pascal Pinon is the sweet, smooth and charming band of her and her sister, Ásthildur.  Haunting vocals and soothing instrumentals make for a very relaxing, excellent combination.  Excellent for when you just need to sit back and relax.

Just another Snake Cult

Good old fashion rock, nothing fancy but damn it’s good.  They put on an extremely high energy live gig as well.  Created by Þórir Bogason, somewhat a genius in the Icelandic music scene, their music just makes you feel good.

Snorri Helgason

Snorri’s first band, Sprengjuhöllin was a super band of sorts.  He epitomizes the hard work ethic of Icelandic musicians.  He is constantly on the go touring everywhere he can while writing and releasing music.  Later this year he will be in Connecticut with the likes of Lay Low and Svavar Knútur at the Icelandic music festival, Iceland Affair.  He’s blessed with incredible writing skills, and his songs are summer porch gems to be shared with friends and beer.

There are two newer bands that I really feel you should check out:

Cell 7

The day before Airwaves of 2013, I was standing in Lucky records with only a handful of people, when just a DJ and Ragna (Cell 7) broke into her rap.  It quickly reminded me of the old days, and her improvising, action with the crowd, and overall set was amazing.  I highly suggest you check out her stuff, and if you can, pick up her new album, CELLF

Dj. flugvél og geimskip

Trippy, spacey grooves with an incredibly fluid high pitched voice.  Dee-Lite has to love this DJ, and if you liked Dee-Lite you will love her as well.  So, set up the disco ball, lava lamp and trip out.

So there you go, more Icelandic bands for you to get to know, this time crowd sourced for your listening pleasure.  There is a lot of music out there, and it’s easy to find new stuff you yourself will dig.  Check out the Iceland Music Export page, or get the book Blue Eyed Pop to learn more about the history, distant and yesterday, of the Icelandic music scene.