Another great day full of music. I wanted to quickly tell you about the tour we took yesterday. I had recommended it as it was something new and so I figured I should go as well, I’m glad I did as it was well worth the time and money, even for someone who has been coming to Iceland regularly for almost a decade and half.
On tour with Ívar is a 3 hour walking tour that begins at Lucky Records. As you wind through the city of Reykjavik you meander down streets and visit places hidden and off the beaten path. You learn not only learn where a lot of famous musicians and artists began, but you get to see where the scene is currently developing. You learn about streets, venues, buildings, new places to go, and old favorites of the city. As a long time visitor here I was surprised that I may change some of my go-to places in order to return to businesses we visited on the tour. I highly recommend the tour to veteran visitors as well as newbies.
Day 2 was a full night, We started off with a small solo set from former kimono front-woman Alison Macneil (Dame Judy Wench) and ventured to Hard Rock cafe for a high energy Tófa set. Then to Gamla bíó for most of the night where we saw Hatari, Grísalappalísa, and For a Minor Reflection. Then we crossed over to Þjóðleikhúsið, the National theatre of Iceland, to catch a few songs from the legendary Megas.
Unlike past years, Iceland Airwaves will be in two cities this year, Reykjavik and Akureyri giving festival goers a chance to see more of the island, and from the looks of it, bringing more Icelandic bands from all over together to play. You can now look at the schedule here. And here are my tips to make the festival more enjoyable.
I will be photographing the festival this year and if you follow my Facebook page you view at your leisure. You can see photos from Airwaves past here.
218 bands have been announced so far of which 162 are Icelandic. I make this page as a quick reference and it’s a good thing to bookmark while you’re at the festival. There will be times where your plans may not come to fruition and you can look at the app, find a band you’ve never heard of for plan B, and use the quick reference here to see if you dig it.
With Icelandic bands it can always be hard to categorize their music styles as one of the greatest things about them is their ability to snag and grab their favorite things from all over the musical spectrum and make it work for them. So these lists are just general nods in the direction you may be looking for, for example, the Dance table, they sit right on the edge of electronic and dance pop/rock and beats. But I tried to focus on the prominence of a lead singer and the beats of the bulk of their songs in deciding which side to place them.
I’ve also made a table of just Möller Records and Thule Records artists as they have quite the strong presence this year. Both of these record labels have continually brought amazing electronic acts out of the Icelandic woodwork for years and I’m really stoked to visit their stage and get my fill of their collective music.
Categorizing some bands can be extremely difficult as they run borders are freely through genres, so if you feel a band needs to be moved into a different category let me know and I’ll change it.