Icelandic singer-songwriter Ásgeir has become an overnight sensation, with Dyrd I daudathogn (“In the Silence”) breaking all records to become Iceland’s fastest-selling debut album by a domestic artist. At the Iceland Music Awards, Ásgeir made an impressive sweep of the board, picking up Best Pop/Rock Album, Best Newcomer, Award for Online Achievement, and the Public Choice Award. The album recalls the heavenly vocals of Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon and light electronic touch of British glitch pop sensation James Blake. In Iceland, the unusual poetry of the lyrics have attracted almost as much attention as the music itself, in part because they are mostly written by Ásgeir’s 72 year old father. The songs themselves, however, are all Ásgeir: light and airy, inset with his distinctive melancholic voice, their vibrancy elevates their appeal far beyond the folktronica tag.
TUSKS aka Emily Underhill was an “imaginative child” growing up on the south coast of England, where she’d fantasize about “other worlds to run around in” and experiment on her family’s household piano. Now, rising producer, singer and multi-instrumentalist TUSKS is touring with Icelandic singer-songwriter Ásgeir sharing songs from her latest album, Dissolve, which she describes as “Evolving dark pop”. Musically, Dissolve steers towards the pulsing cinematic expanse of The xx, Daughter, Explosions in the Sky and Sigur Ros. It’s the purest distillation of Emily as a person, and it strikes a uniquely human chord through its melodies, which are at once comfortingly familiar and refreshing.