Tuesday, October 13th, 2009
Worry 'Til Spring
An Introduction to Sprengjuhollin
MySpaceIf it were possible to monetize pure musical oddity, then not only would Iceland’s economic problems be a thing of the past, they might well be the world’s top fiscal superpower. Yes, the likes of Bjork and Sigur Ros would guarantee a GDP many times greater than the rest of the planet, but the tiny country’s smaller exports would also help push things forward – case in point, Sprengjuhollin (it’s pronounced the way it’s spelled. Go on, try).
The Reykjavík quintet don’t wave their freak flag nearly as high as their more famous countrymen, preferring to draw inspiration from their no-doubt substantial collection of Mod-era LPs rather than by communing with snow fairies out on the fjords, but assuming them to be straight pop purveyors, as their English-language singles might imply, would be unwise. Because while tracks like the orchestral folk-pop of “Worry Till Spring” might act as an easily accessible point of entry for their second self-titled album, once inside it’s a much stranger place. The majority of songs are in Icelandic and are given to more warped trajectories, at times recalling Dungen in their psychedelic inclinations, but always remaining concise and more importantly, hooky. You don’t need to speak the language to hum along.
Sprengjuhollin were around back in the Winter for Canadian Musicfest and both won folks over and were won over themselves – they’re returning for an eastern Canadian tour that will start and end in the Maritimes but swing through Ontario next week for a couple of Toronto dates – one on October 24 at the Rivoli and another on October 25 at Rancho Relaxo. The band were also an eMusic Selects pick last Summer – check out the feature piece for an interview with the band and a guided tour of the last record.
The National Post has an interview with Sune Rose Wagner of The Raveonettes, whose new album In And Out Of Control is shockingly good. By shockingly, I mean they no longer sound like a band that I always feel like I should like more than I do, and like a band that I could actually really like. They’re at the Phoenix on October 22.
The deluxe edition of School Of Seven Bells’ 2008 debut Alpinisms is out today and available to stream – second disc of remixes and bonus tracks included – at Spinner. They also recently announced they’ve given their second album, due out next year, a title – Disconnect From Desire – expect to hear some of those new songs on Thursday night when they play Lee’s Palace.
Ume – the toast of both SxSW and NXNE if I’m to be believed – are embarking on another northeast/Canadian tour and will be at the Horseshoe on November 3 for a free show. The occasion is the Canadian release of their Sunshower EP on October 27.
In addition to their November 7 show at the North York Central Library, Bruce Peninsula have set two dates at the Music Gallery for November 27 and 28.