Ever since the first festival in 1999, Iceland Airwaves has become one of the premier showcases for new music, Icelandic as well as international. Known for its intimacy and party spirit, Airwaves features many local and visiting artists playing venues all around downtown Reykjavík. Local artists include feminist punk band Hórmónar, the folky dream pop ensemble Team Dreams and hip-hopper Logi Pedro. Among the visiting artists this year are Faroese singer-songwriter Eivør, Norwegian DJ Cashmere Cat and British indie band Stereo Honey.
What’s On is attending the festival, so expect daily reviews this week. But first, read what artists you can’t miss during Airwaves 2018.
Visiting artists you must see
Blood Orange, Harpa Flói, Nov. 10 at 01:00
Blood Orange is the R&B solo project of producer, composer, and multi-instrumentalist Davonté Hynes, known from Test Icicles, Lightspeed Champion, and as songwriter for artists including Solange, Florence and the Machine, and Carly Rae Jepsen. His fourth studio album Negro Swan was released August 2018 and received universal acclaim.
Eivør, Þjóðleikhúsið, Nov. 9 at 19:00
Faroese singer-songwriter Eivør, known for her distinct and powerful voice, has her musical roots in Faroese ballads. Pursuing music since she was just 15, she sings pop, jazz, rock and folktronica songs in English, Faroese and Icelandic. Don’t miss this force of nature!
Stereo Honey, Gamla Bíó, Nov. 8 at 22:40
With uplifting melodies and a catchy falsetto, Stereo Honey is slowly winning hearts. Having performed all over the UK in 2017 and 2018, this four-piece band is ready to take on the rest of the world, starting with Iceland. Believe us, this band will live up to the hype.
Crumb, Silfursalir, Nov. 10 at 00:10
60s-inspired psych rock, dream pop and jazz fusion band Crumb is quickly making a name for themselves. Their two EPs are filled with groovy songs, written by lead singer Lila Ramani during her college years and further developed by the band since. We look forward to hearing their fresh sound during Airwaves.
Cashmere Cat, Reykjavík Art Museum, Nov. 9 at 01:00
Cashmere Cat is a project by Norwegian producer Magnus August Høiberg, known for his bootleg remixes and EPs, and his collaborations with Kanye West, The Weeknd, Ariana Grande, Halsey, Selena Gomez, MØ, and more. His debut album 9 was released in 2017, and some call him one of the most popular pop producers in the world.
Bedouine, Fríkirkjan, Nov. 9 at 22:20
Born in Syria and spending her childhood in Saudi Arabia, singer-songwriter Azniv Korkejian, known under her artist name Bedouine, moved to America when she was eight years old. Her music influenced by her nomadic life, she produces charming folk and country songs, all wrapped in her warm voice.
Local artists you must see
Hórmónar, Gaukurinn, Nov. 8 at 22:20
Feminist punk band Hórmónar released their first album Nanananabúbú this year. After winning The Icelandic Music Experiments in 2016, they have been playing at Airwaves every year to much critical acclaim. Expect an energetic punk show you will not soon forget.
Team Dreams, Harpa Flói, Nov. 10 at 21:10
What do you get when you combine musicians from three amazing bands into one project? The answer is: Team Dreams, a collaboration between Sin Fang, Sóley, and Örvar Smárason of múm. Together, they make a careful mix of folky, electronic, dream pop songs, guaranteed to sweep you away this Airwaves!
Moses Hightower, Gamla Bíó, Nov. 7 at 22:30
Moses Hightower is a 70s-inspired soul and soft rock band that has been one of Iceland’s sweethearts since 2010. They have released three studio albums which were all very popular, topping Icelandic radio charts and winning them many music prizes. We can’t wait to see what they bring to Airwaves this year.
Vök, Harpa Flói, Nov. 9 at 22:20
The members of Vök have been busy creating the finest indie-electronic in the country since 2013. The group lists Portishead, Air, and Massive Attack as their main influences. If you are into indie then Vök is a must-see!
Mammút, IÐNÓ, Nov. 10 at 23:40
Get ready to rock! Mammút won The Icelandic Music Experiments back in 2004 and has since gained popularity both nationally and internationally. The band is known for their solid rock shows and lead singer Kata has been praised for her strong vocals more than once.
Logi Pedro, Reykjavík Art Museum, Nov. 9 at 22:40
You might know Logi Pedro from popular alternative rock band Retro Stefson, active until 2016. Since then, he has performed with Young Karin and Sturla Atlas, and has just started his solo hip-hop project. His first single Dúfan mín reached the top of the charts in Iceland.
See you at Airwaves!