Music & Art Dec 30, 2014

Seattle’s KEXP Radio Lists Top 10 Icelandic Bands of 2014

"It’s mind-boggling how a place so small can create so much terrific music."

Jim Beckmann, online editor at Seattle’s KEXP radio station, published a list of his favorite Icelandic albums of the year. “I’m not sure I could find even ten albums as good coming out of New York, or Los Angeles, Chicago, Nashville or anywhere else,” Beckmann writes. 

KEXP recently visited Iceland to host and stream exclusive performances during Iceland Airwaves. Check out KEXP on YouTube to watch videos of those performances by artists like Kiasmos, Mammut, HAM and more.

So, which Icelandic bands made Jim Beckmann’s top 10 list this year? Read on to find out!

  1. Mono Town – In The Eye of the Storm (Record Records)
  2. Low Roar – (Tonequake Records)
  3. Sólstafir – Ótta (Season of Mist)
  4. Oyama – Coolboy (12 Tónar)
  5. Prins Póló – Sorrí (Skakkapopp)
  6. Samaris – Silkidrangar (12 Tónar/One Little Indian)
  7. Börn – Börn (PBP)
  8. Kiasmos – Kiasmos (Erased Tapes)
  9. Kippi Kaninus – Temperaments (Mengi)
  10. ADHD – 5 (self-released)

But Beckmann couldn’t limit himself to just 10 Icelandic albums. He lists “5 More Excellent ICelandic Albums Released in 2014.” 

  1. Geislar – Containing the Dark (self-released)
  2. Grísalappalísa – Rökrétt framhald (12 Tónar)
  3. My bubba – Goes Abroader (Fake Diamond)
  4. Teitur Magnússon – Tuttugu og sjö (self-released)
  5. Pink Street Boys – Trash from the Boys (Lady Boy Records)

Not to be forgotten, Beckmann closes by also mentioning “Rökkurró,Valdimar, and FM Belfast, whose third LP, Brighter Days, is a synth-heavy celebration of ecstatic electro-pop that will chase away all your worries as it compels you to shake your ass. Also, of note are two EPs, one by each of Retro Stefson’s Stefánsson brothers, whose projects, Uni Stefsonand Young Karin, ought to be making bigger waves next year.”

Love these bands and songs? Stay tuned to find out who’s performing at our upcoming Taste of Iceland events around the United States and Canada.