Axel Flovent: “You are the reason why I got what I really wanted…Now I can see the sun When I look at where we started” – Iceland Airwaves (Nov 3, 2017)

Written by Erica Andreozzi

Although Axel Flovent hails from a tiny North Coast Icelandic town (Húsavík) with only about 2,000 people, he was able to make quite the dent in the global music scene, gathering >20 million Spotify hits on his debut album, Forest Fires (video below).  Since then, he’s signed with Epic records, relocated to Amsterdam, and has toured around the world playing festivals like SXSW (going again this year!), Eurosonic, The Great Escape (a mini SXSW in Brighton that I went to both years I lived in London), and more. He also released a new EP (Quiet Eyes) this year and a new single called ‘City Dream‘ (my favorite, video below). It’s also cool to know that some of Axel’s Airwave’s shows showcased the super-talented drummer (Valgeir Skorri Vernharðsson) from some of my favorite Icelandic bands, Rythmatik and Sigur Ros. The Iceland music scene is known for it’s tight-knit community, and we love it for that. I hope Axel can make his way over to California so he can “see the sun,” no matter what his City Dream.  😉

 

 

Mani Orrason: “But freedom haunts me like it should haunt no one… And when I run through the trees I will run for everyone” – Iceland Airwaves (Nov 3, 2017)

Written by Erica Andreozzi

Meet Mani Orrason, a young Icelandic multi-instrumentalist whose first ever single, ‘Fed My Days‘ (see video below) made it to #1 on the Icelandic charts when he was only 16 years old. Following up on that success, Mani soon released a debut EP, Wake Me Up, whose title track is super catchy and will certainly wake you/me up.  Since then, Mani has released a full album (Repeating Patterns, 2015) of folk/pop songs and plans to release another in 2017.  He must of fallen in love with his Spain (or someone from there, haha) during his all years of touring Europe, because now this Icelandic expat lives in Alicante.  Maybe this second album will have even more spice. Maybe it will feed all of our days, AND all of our nights… 😉

 

GDJYB: “Tick tick tock tock the minute goes, the history flows, nothing’s gonna change the lies u told, the scam we know” – Iceland Airwaves (Nov 3, 2017)

Written by Erica Andreozzi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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GDJYB (Gai Dan Jane Yuk Bang) were one of the top new discoveries for me at Iceland Airwaves this year. Calling themselves a “Math-folk girl band from Hong Kong and plays song in Honglish,” this badass quintet (Soni Cheng – guitarist, Heihei Ng – Drummer, Soft Liu – Vocalist, Wing Chan – Bassist).  My eyes were bugging out the entire set and bugged out EVEN MORE when I learned that they will be playing at San Francisco’s Noise Pop festival at the end of February! Can’t wait to see them again! Be sure to check out GDJYB’s debut EP (what I bought right after the set) and their first full album (11 songs) ‘23:59 Before Tomorrow,’ released in early 2017 in both Hong Kong and Taiwan. I true treat! 🙂

“If there’s a band capable of striking a successful balance between tranquility and tumult, calm and tension, it’s GDJYB, Hong Kong’s best-kept secret. Featured on the art-pop quartet’s debut album, 23:59 Before Tomorrow, the intriguingly titled “That Day I Went to His Funeral” presents a clean, smooth, and resolutely warm façade, one capable of disarming the most hardened set of ears. Beneath its alluring surface, however, the band can be heard churning out energetically swirling tangles of guitar, bass, drums, and even multi-part harmonies that in their delicate complexity fall somewhere between the Marine Girls’ jazzy post-punk and Warpaint’s dreamy tribal pop.”KEXP

Some of my favorite tracks can be found on my recent playlist: Make It Out Alive

Make it out Alive (Playlist: Jan 15, 2018)

Compiled by Erica Andreozzi

“I felt the music hit my bones and I fell back
I fell into the clouds
My feet weren’t touching the ground
We started to float around” Angus and Julia Stone (‘Make it Out Alive‘)
FRESH NEW PLAYLIST (82 songs!) inspired by some of my TOP PICKS of Iceland Airwaves music festival (Nov 2017) for which I’ll post individual reviews: Mammut (winner of the 2004 Annual Battle Of The Bands (Músíktilraunir)), Kiriyama Family (whose track ‘Innocence‘ has been #1 in Iceland for the past 3 months), Omotrack (2nd prize winner of the 2017 Annual Battle Of The Bands (Músíktilraunir)), Mani Orrason, Hórmónar (1st place winner of the 2016 Icelandic Music Experiments), Songhoy Blues, Keto (my talented friend Le Hah!), Axel Flovent, Hatari (Grapevine music award‘s 2016 and 2017 ‘Best Live Band of the Year‘), GDJYB (Gai Dan Jane Yuk Bang), Rökkva, Valdimar, One Week Wonder, Rythmatik (winner of the 2015 Annual Battle Of The Bands (Músíktilraunir)), Captain Syrup, Hogni (Grapevine music award‘s ‘Album of the Year‘), GDJYB (Gai Dan Jan ), Mosi Musik, Asgeir (fastest-selling debut album in Icelandic history, ‘Album of the Year’ winner at 2012 Icelandic Music Awards), We Made God (3rd prize winner of the 2006 Annual Battle Of The Bands (Músíktilraunir) ), and I am Halo.
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Mammut is by far one of my FAVORITE ICELANDIC BANDS and have been ever since I first discovered them at the Great Escape music festival in Brighton back in 2013. I am somewhat OBSESSED with their newest album, Kinder Versions, especially after getting hooked on ‘Kinder Version‘ (“I’m bringing all my stories back, erasing all the kinder versions of my past”) ❤ ❤ ❤ , ‘The Moon Will Never Turn On Me‘ (“I want to make this right but I don’t feel right, Cause sometimes life tries to eat us up… but then I take a look around and see how dust turns into gold and I embrace this world, embrace the world, embrace the world and I love it all”), and ‘Pray for Air‘ (“Taste the dirt of the water… you know you’ll never be pure.”) *Note: Air in water unfortunately would mean less blue ice when that water freezes!* Not only did National radio and television RÚV chose Kinder Version as the best album of 2017, but it was The Line of Best Fit selected it at #18 for 2017. Mammut was also awarded performers of the year (Krókurinn 2017, Menningarverðlaun Rásar) and selected to be on KEXP‘s top 10 list of the YEAR. They definitely had a REMARKABLE 2017! Can’t wait to post my review on them! I got some epic videos of their first set of Airwaves in Reykjavik, especially during ‘Kinder Version‘ when Kata pointed to me about a 1 min in and asked “Have you been excited?” with a gaze that stared into the depths of MY SOUL. If I wasn’t excited before, I certainly was after.:)
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Other sources of inspiration for this playlist were drawn from recent shows that I really enjoyed (see reviews by clicking on link) — Henry Jamison, Angus and Julia Stone, City of the Sun, Overcoats, Nick Mulvey, Jaws of Love. (Kelcey Ayer of Local Natives), Caroline Smith, Tune-Yards, Ben Sollee, Emily Scott Robinson, Luke Sital-Singh, Henry Jamison, Gracie and Rachel — as well as new releases by Geographer, The Boxer Rebellion, Trevor Hall, Caught a Ghost, Black Pistol Fire, The Oh Hellos, Sharon Van Etten, Amber Coffman (of Dirty Projectors), Cosmo Sheldrake, and Van William.
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City of the Sun was one of my TOP FIVE PICKS OF 2017, and their EXPLOSIVE, GENRE-BENDING sound (post-rock blended with and flamenco guitar and unique percussion) will SWEEP YOU TO THE SKY. It’s only a matter of time before these guys shine their vibrant tunes ‘To the Sun and All the Cites In Between‘ (name of debut album).
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Previous Playlists: Up All Night, Capsized, Creature Comfort, I Know You Know, Feeling Electric, Wake Up, Oceans Away, I Want it All, Standing Rock, Jungle, When Things Fall Apart, and more…

(In order to access the playlist, you have to press the 3 vertical dots in the upper right hand corner and select download. You can then cancel the download immediately and still have access to the playlist. If you are still having uses, let me know and I can send you a link to download the tracks!)

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  1. So Low- Geographer
  2. Love Yourself- The Boxer Rebellion
  3. Chateau- Angus & Julia Stone
  4. Moon / Sun- Trevor Hall
  5. Kinder Version-  Mammut
  6. Before The Hurting Lands.- Jaws Of Love.
  7. I Don’t Believe In Us- Overcoats
  8. Mountain To Move- Nick Mulvey
  9. Make It Out Alive- Angus & Julia Stone
  10. Chemistry- Kiriyama Family
  11. Second Sun- City of the Sun
  12. Right & Wrong- Caught a Ghost
  13. Trying Not to Love You- Caroline Smith
  14. Pray For Air- Mammut
  15. Speak Of The Devil- Black Pistol Fire
  16. Snow- Angus & Julia Stone
  17. The Wires- Ben Sollee
  18. Remembering- Nick Mulvey
  19. Wander- Trevor Hall
  20. Kai’s Song-  Overcoats
  21. Firefly- City of the Sun
  22. Blind Spots- Omotrack
  23. The Moon Will Never Turn On Me- Mammut
  24. 21st Century Heartbeat- Luke Sital-Singh
  25. Magazine- Caroline Smith
  26. Transform Your Game (We Remain)- Nick Mulvey
  27. Light Years Away- Kiriyama Family
  28. Fed All My Days- Mani Orrason
  29. Baudelaire- Angus & Julia Stone
  30. Torches- The Oh Hellos
  31. Dark Night- Amber Coffman
  32. Wake The Riot- Black Pistol Fire
  33. Love Me Like I’m Gone.- Jaws Of Love.
  34. I Can’t Quit- The Vaccines
  35. Bloodstyle- Caroline Smith
  36. Ekki Sleppa- Hórmónar
  37. Sahara- Songhoy Blues
  38. Time- City of the Sun
  39. Overalls (Live)- Emily Scott Robinson
  40. Imaginary Mountains- Omotrack
  41. We Tried Love- Mammut
  42. Mechanical Advantage- Ben Sollee
  43. Superstar- Keto
  44. Hawaiian License Plates.- Jaws Of Love.
  45. On the Mountain Tall-  The Oh Hellos
  46. Apart- Kiriyama Family
  47. Walls- Mammut
  48. City Dream- Axel Flovent
  49. Ódýr- Hatari
  50. Heart Attack- Tune-Yards
  51. Nothing Stays The Same- Luke Sital-Singh
  52. Up There- Trevor Hall
  53. In Your Hands- Nick Mulvey
  54. All To Myself- Amber Coffman (of Dirty Projectors)
  55. Come Along- Cosmo Sheldrake
  56. Where It Goes-  雞蛋蒸肉餅  GDJYB (Gai Dan Jane Yuk Bang)
  57. I Want You to Know- Rökkva
  58. Revolution (Ft. First Aid Kit)- Van William
  59. Læt Það Duga- Valdimar
  60. Mars- One Week Wonder
  61. Carrie Bell- Ben Sollee
  62. Blackened Pool- Keto
  63. Young Folks- City of the Sun
  64. Geiri á Sjoppunni- Captain Syrup
  65. Angel Eyes- One Week Wonder
  66. Soubour – Songhoy Blues
  67. Bed I Made (Bonus Track)- Allen Stone
  68. Ryðgaður Dans- Valdimar
  69. Time Is A Riddle- Luke Sital-Singh
  70. Traveling Mercies- Emily Scott Robinson
  71. What the Fuck- The Boxer Rebellion
  72. For You- Sharon Van Etten
  73. Peace Has a Pencil in Her Hair – Rythmatik
  74. Kynsvelt- Hórmónar
  75. Queen Of Queens – i Am Halo
  76. Crash- Hogni
  77. I Am You Are Me- Mosi Musik
  78. Trust- Asgeir
  79. The Start is a Finish Line- We Made God
  80. Sunlit Juice- Henry Jamison
  81. (Un)comfortable- Gracie and Rachel
  82. Goodbye- Mosi Musik

Asgeir: “Oh, how I long for light.. A light that won’t leave me.. Never to go away”: The Fillmore in SF (Sept 1, 2017)

Written by Erica Andreozzi

It had been 3 years since I last saw Asgeir, the incredibly talented artist who was my initial hook into the Icelandic music scene. Amped by the recent release of Asgeir’s beautiful album (‘Afterglow’) and his slay-worthy covers of Adele, Abba, Nirvana, The National, and others as part of his unique #asgeirstraigttovinyl project (taking requests from all over the world and recording them straight to vinyl for 24 hr straight), I could hardly contain myself for their show at The Fillmore last night. They delivered a flawless performance from start to finish (75 min) without any interruption, making it easier for the crowd to be whisked away to another world (including the security guard who told me his mind wandered to a far away place). I think we all sported an Asgeir “afterglow” after hearing ‘I Know You Know’ (“Oh, how I long for light.. A light that won’t leave me… Never to go away”) and ‘Torrent’ (my favorites across both albums) come alive right in front of our eyes. Torrent was the first song in Asgeir‘s collection that had me hooked, and the fact that he saved it for the encore was super special. The drums and keys in that one are so freaking awesome! I am so happy that they came to San Francisco to serenade us with their “stardust,” and I look forward to more of it at Iceland Airwaves Music festival in November! Check out my previous review of Asgeir from 2014 and my recent playlist inspired my his track ‘I Know You Know.” 😀

 

*Check out more videos on my YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/eandreoz

Instagram: beatsthatsetmypulse
Twitter: @beatsthatsetmy

I Know You Know (Playlist: July 9, 2017)

I Know You Know

Created by Erica Andreozzi

NEW PLAYLIST inspired by my recent visit to Iceland, a country that, like Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters, stole my heart the first time around. I could not agree more with his speech at Secret Solstice Festival last month:

“We’ve never played here, let’s go here (Iceland). And our first day that we spent here, and I’m not kidding, you can ask an of my friends or my family, that this country became my f*cking favorite place on earth. And you might think it’s stupid and kind of silly, but that time, 2003, whenever it was, I bought this f*cking necklace, and I’ve never taken it off… for 14 years. Because, I think that your country is a perfect example for the rest of the world. I really do. I think that you’re strong, and you’re independent, and you’re smart, and you take care of each other, and you respect nature, and you respect each other. So, someday, if I ever wanna move somewhere else, I hope that you’ll have me and my family here in Iceland. I love it so much.” ❤ 

It was Asgeir‘s 2013 debut album, Dýrð í dauðaþögn (the biggest selling debut album in Icelandic history), that was my initial hook into Icelandic music and culture, and I listened to non-stop during my first ever trip to Iceland back in March 2014 (and so it forever holds a special place in my heart). I was so moved by his live performances at Bush Hall in London and Iceland Airwaves Music Festival that I decided to write a pretty detailed review: https://beatsthatsetmypulse.wordpress.com/2014/07/17/asgeir-i-lift-my-mind-to-the-sky-and-i-let-it-take-flight-the-wind-carries-to-my-ears-precious-sounds-of-life/. We all were anxiously awaiting his next album, and when Afterglow was released May of this year (with ‘I Know You Know‘  being one of my favorite tracks), you better believe there were plenty of smiles beaming around the world. AND, as if releasing a new album and touring around Europe & Australia didn’t tire him out enough, Asgeir decided keep the world smiling with his fascinating feat of playing requests (including covers of Milky Chance, Adele, Abba, Nirvana, etc) for 24hr non-stop and recording them straight to vinyl. SUCH a freaking cool, creative way to engage fans on a personal level and cultivate a more interactive music community. I am amazed by his generosity and unique vision, and I can’t wait to see him again at Iceland Airwaves in Nov. Another Icelandic artist that I look forward to seeing at Airwaves is Rythmatik, a super talented indie-rock band that I was lucky enough to discover (and meet!) at Secret Solstice this year. They recently won the The Icelandic Music Experiments (Músikltilraunir) “Battle of the Bands” and moved to Reykjavik from Suðureyri & Akureyri in order to hone their craft and play more live shows. Oh and, they are super fun and awesome to hang out with (always a plus!) 😀

This playlist was also inspired by performances at Secret Solstice (Kiriyama Family, Amabadama, Rhye), Bottlerock Napa (Day Wave, Dreamers, Parade of Lights, City of the Sun, Run River North, Bad Suns), the San Francisco Oyster Fest (Sir Sly, Passion Pit, Kongos, Panic is Perfect, The Soft Whites Sixties). There was additional influence from recent track/album releases by The National (BEEN WAITING WITH BAITED BREATH and SO STOKED to be seeing them Oct 14!), London Grammar (“My only hope is to let life stretch out before me and break me on this lonely road”– so good), Haim (seeing them Sept 7!), Manchester Orchestra (Sept 16!), Broken Social Scene (seeing them Oct 26!), Lucy Rose (accompanied by a short documentary of her fan-led trip to Latin America last year), Vancouver Sleep Clinic, Zach Winters, Jade Bird, Nothing But Thieves,  Public Service Broadcasting, Lanterns on the Lake, and Ben Sollee. Finally, I was happy to include tracks by some new discoveries: OUTLYA, Overcoats (LOVE!), Isaac Gracie, Henry Jamison, Klangstof, and Ella Vos.

Check out my fb music page (https://www.facebook.com/Beatsthatsetmypulse/) and YouTube page (http://www.youtube.com/user/eandreoz) for more pics and videos!

 

(In order to access the playlist, you have to press the 3 vertical dots in the upper right hand corner and select download. You can then cancel the download immediately and still have access to the playlist. If you are still having uses, let me know and I can send you a link to download the tracks!)

*Check out full videos from the night on my YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/eandreoz

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Beatsthatsetmypulse/

Instagram: beatsthatsetmypulse

Twitter: @beatsthatsetmy

Low Roar – “I wanna feel something again… memorable”: The Independent in SF (April 24 & 25, 2017)

Written by Erica Andreozzi

 

It had been very long time since Ryan Karazija’s lovely “low roar” has been heard within his former stomping ground of San Francisco, and this SF Bay Area native had kept us longing for his return. We had all hoped that “once in a long long while” (ironically the name of his new album) he would be back, and that time came Mon/Tues night at The Independent . Just as I remembered, Ryan’s beautiful, mysterious melodies have a special way of seeping into the psyche and having you join him on very personal journey through perfect contradictions of fear/love and doubt/faith. His haunting howls will lather you in chills and make you feel the cold shock of his move from California to Iceland back in 2011 (one that sure takes immense strength). I was fortunate to have discovered Low Roar back in 2014 at Iceland Airwaves Music Festival (made me fall in love with Iceland even more), and was so hooked that I saw them a week later in London at The Lexington as part of their Ja Ja Ja Music festival. (I still have the free bag they gave and actually brought it along last night). I also brought with me a stage-layout paper that Ryan signed for me that night – can’t believe it held up through all my wanderlusting travels since then! It was surreal to be seeing Low Roar again last night and having Ryan give me a big hug after the show. It’s times like these where I feel strong melancholy for London music scene and exposure to more international music from Europe and Scandinavia (especially Iceland!). Although Low Roar won’t be playing Secret Solstice Festival in June, I know I will see them again the next time our paths intersect. Old gems like ‘I’ll Keep Coming’ and ‘Easy Way Out’ are timeless tracks that I revisit again and again when “I wanna feel something again … memorable.” Can’t wait to dive into the new album. More timeless tracks to unearth. #lowroar #sanfermintour #theindependentsf #icelandicmusicscene #onceinalonglongwhile #newalbumtour #longedforhisreturn 👌🏻

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A goofy montage with the talented Ryan Karazija of Low Roar. So glad to catch them at The Independent two night in a row. It had been almost 3 years since I saw them last in London. Too long of a wait! #lowroar #goofymontage #newalbumtour #onceinalonglongwhile

*Check out full videos from the night on my YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/eandreoz

Instagram: beatsthatsetmypulse
Twitter: @beatsthatsetmy