News Feb 17, 2011

Skuli Sverisson to Perform at The Stone NYC

Layers of pulsating strings…streams of cinematic texture…expanses of heartfelt melody. These are all aspects of the musical world of Skúli Sverrisson, a twenty-first century virtuoso composer and multi-instrumentalist from Iceland, who has united broad swaths of contemporary music into a unique personal language. Skúli’s music is as warm-hearted as it is advanced. These two albums form a set likely to appeal to fans of John Fahey and Brian Eno, as well to fans of Philip Glass and Fennesz.

Sería is a set of hypnotic, labyrinthine songs – dense webs of finger-picked guitars and basses, mostly played by Skúli and Amadeo Pace (Blonde Redhead), with broad waves of strings by Eyvind Kang (Bill Frisell, Sunn O))) and Hildur Gudnadóttir (Pan Sonic, Nico Muhly) and bass clarinets, pedal steel and keyboards by Anthony Burr (Jim O’Rourke, LaMonte Young). Three tracks feature exquisite vocals by Ólöf Arnalds, and one track features the inimitable voice of Skúli’s longtime collaborator Laurie Anderson. Sería won “Best Album of the Year” in the 2006 Icelandic Music Awards.

The brand new Sería II adds new layers of vivid instrumental color and melody. Mostly recorded in Iceland in 2009, Skúli’s sonic palette has grown to include electric keyboards and ringing toy piano, resembling a classic soundtrack by Nino Rota or Ennio Morricone. Skúli’s unique instrumental and compositional voice remains distinct, as do those of his continuing partners: Pace, Kang and Burr as well as Ólöf Arnalds, Hildur Gudnadóttir and David Thór Jónsson. Sería II is a haunting, mysterious album, with a rare depth of feeling and sonic richness.