nedeľa 29. novembra 2009

Icelandic punk

Icelandic punk! I want to share here some interesting links to punk bands from Iceland, what is more or less isolated county. But back in late 70s punk virus came also there. And these bands sounds great to my ears!

Some good links:
You can listen some bands there, also I took info from there...

The Icelandic Rock-Phenomenon 1979 - 1983
Some of the most important bands of that era were:

Fræbbblarnir ("The Stamen") formed in 1978 were probably the first punkband to arrive on the scene, they played melodic songs fast and raw with a jolly undertone. Their sound was very inspired by the Ramones and the Stranglers.
The 1981 released record "Bjór" (The Beer EP) was the band's statement for the right to drink beer which was prohibited in Iceland at that time.

Taugadeildin (The Neurotics Ward) were a short-living band from the suburbs of Reykjavik, their sound was very fresh and melodic. There were plans to perform a show for the Rokk I Reykjavik documentary but the band had finally split before it happened.

Þeyr (also known as Theyr) was a renowned Icelandic New Wave band from the early eighties. Shrouded under a veil of mystery, their three-year existence was characterized by a deep interest in ancient wisdom. Þeyr helped bring about the New Wave movement in Iceland and became one of the first Icelandic bands to be known abroad.

Utangarðmenn ("The Outsiders") was the band of Bubbi Morthens, the man who made this style of rock-music popular in iceland.
Utangarðmenn played rock with influences of reggea music. Bubbi Morthens left the band after the fourth album, and formed a new band called Egó, the other band members continued playing, but under the name of Bodies, which was a tribute to the Utangarðsmenn song "We are the bodies".

Bubbi Morthens' second band Egó was like Utangarðmenn more rock-orientated, their first album "Breyttir Tímar" is one of the most successful albums in the Icelandic music history; it also includes imo one of the best Icelandic rock songs: Stórir Strákar Fá Raflost.

After her first LP in 1977 Björk get in touch with punk and began to play in several short-lving punk band's like Spit and Snout and Exodus.
This band with the strange name Tappi Tíkarrass, meaning “Cork the Bitch’s Arse”, was Björk's first record releasing band, they played a quirky style of punkish rock added with elements of funk, disco and jazz. The band's only song in English is called "London" and it's one of their punkiest songs too.

Grýlurnar ("The Witches") were the first Icelandic group exclusively with female members, they played a very poppish style of new wave.
After the split of the band, the singer Ragnhildur Gísladóttir became a member of Stuðmenn, a nowadays successful and well-known band in Iceland.

KUKL ("Witchcraft") was clearly the most experimental and uncompromising band ever came from Iceland. Their first release was a 7" Single called "Söngull", which is in fact the Icelandic version of "Dismembered", a track wich appeard on their first Album "The Eye" in 1984 (on Crass records).
The band released another album in 1985 called "Holidays in Europe". A crazy musical journey across Europe including all sorts of paranoia.

It is very hard to put KUKL's music into words but Björk herself descibed the music as "Hardcore existential punk music!"

Here you can listen their album "Eye" from 1984


some links - fragments from document about Iceland punk/wave - Rokk í reykjavík

And few words about document:(from
Rokk í Reykjavík (Rokk í reykjavík.ogg pronunciation (help·info)) was a documentary directed by Icelandic Friðrik Þór Friðriksson during the Icelandic winter of 1981-1982 and released for the local television the same year.
With this documentary, Friðriksson showcases the alternative music scene through several performances of the post punk/New Wave most important bands at that time taken from different concerts and accompanied by, some times, short interviews with musicians, and it portrays the lifestyle of the Icelandic youth faced to the establishment and advocated to anarchy, who were trying to find their own identity.

and from

Rokk í Reykjavík is an excellent documentary about the Icelandic post-punk scene in the very early eighties. The film strings together interviews and concert footage from a couple dozen post-punk bands, including Þeyr (started by Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson, later to collaborate with Psychic TV and Current 93) and a very young, pre-Sugarcubes, pre-KUKL Björk.

Though the film is apparently impossible to buy, you can probably find it if you really want to. And it’s well worth the search. The music scene documented in the film is much more exciting than anything that came out of England or the American Hardcore scene—imagine if gray Manchester was built on a Viking burial ground haunted by elves and pixies, and you’ll get a fair idea of the type of energy that pours out of the young bands depicted in the film.

Bands portrayed run the gamut from gutter punk to Hermann Nitsch-style performance dread, with a lot of politics (both extreme left and extreme right) and tongue-in-cheek button-pushing (Þeyr marching around in self-parodying Nazi regalia and playing in underground bunkers comes to mind).

My favorite moment in the movie, however, has to be the appearance of a band of four twelve-year-old crusties who look like a cross between punks, a kid street gang and reincarnated Viking berserkers. After concert footage of the crazed prepubescents raging into a couple of pretty good jams and then attacking their instruments with steel hatchets and lighting shit on fire for an appreciative audience, we’re treated to an interview with the lead singer, who speaks with the weary, jaded voice of a man three times his age about how much the band loves to snort glue and all the times they’ve had to fight to keep the local police from confiscating their glue and paint thinner stash. They’re the hardest punks I’ve ever seen.

In all, the movie is a rare glimpse into a little-known scene, one that spawned some of the most creative acts in the music world but which has been seldom documented or even heard of outside Iceland. Well worth the time spent tracking down.

...a ešte jedna strana z knihy Bjork od autorky Evelyn McDonnell, ktorá vyšla vo vydavateľstve Volvox Globator, v edícii Evokace.


p.s. please, if somebody knows more about this topic, let me know, leave the comment, link, anything. thanx

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