Saturday night was Iceland’s independence day and what better way to celebrate than to listen to some great music under the midnight sun (and a few clouds). Gréta and Ásdís spent the night quietly wondering why people plan outdoors festivals in Iceland, but mostly enjoying the great music
Ásdís – Arriving around 8pm on this beautiful evening, I started at stage Gimli, where Princess Nokia had already gotten the crowd singing and jumping. Princess Nokia is a young alternative hip-hop artist from New York, she’s cool, fresh and fearless. When coming to her hit song Tomboy, she crowd surfed, showed attitude and finally mooned the crowd resulting in a huge applause and everybody loving here even more. I admit, I was impressed by her i-don’t-care attitude.
After this, there was time to relax and meet friends. We sat on the grass in Askur for a small picnic with the tunes of electronic music in the background. To my enjoyment, I found the elusive taco truck and a craft bar which did not leave us disappointed.
Ásdís – After the gourmet picnic, I stopped again by Gimli stage to check out Novelist. He was a great surprise, he had such a good energy and clearly loved being there and I left me wanting to be his friend. With a thick British accent, he shouted to the crowd and got people singing with him. There was even a technical error which he totally managed in the best way, by rapping like a champion with the speed of light.
Gréta – Novelist was actually one of the artists I was most excited to see at last year’s Secret Solstice but unfortunately he had a last minute cancellation. So I was pretty excited to see he was part of the line up again this year. Even with the long build-up of excitement, I wasn’t disappointed, this infuriatingly young boy soon had the crowd chanting his name and jumping to the beats. He has some impressive lyrics skills as well, which were put to the test when some technical difficulties forced him to do a part of his set a capella. Needless to say, he passed with flying colours and for the rest of his set, the audience was eagerly jumping around in a carefree mosh pit or at least nodding their heads to the music.
Gréta – It’s the height of summer and the sun shines all through night this time of year, but it’s still Iceland, so the weather is not to be counted on. By the time Novelist finished his set, it started raining, infinitely adding to the charm of the acts performing in the Fenrir tent. Meeting up with a few friends there, we had some drinks and debated our next steps. I’m sorry to say I wasn’t paying all that much attention to KSFmusic but at least I have fond (dry) memories of his time at the festival.
Ásdís – It started raining at some point, and we continued our walk to Fenrir stage which is inside a tent. KSF, an Icelandic DJ set duo had started their electronic bliss going on. I fully enjoyed their music, and I would say that this was my favourite performance this evening.
Gréta – The rain didn’t let up for the rest of the night, drizzling on and off, but that wasn’t about to stop anyone from heading to the Valhalla stage to see Prodigy perform. Again, this is Iceland, so most people were prepared for the rain, with umbrellas and rain coats popping up like zits on an adolescent youth. I know I don’t have to tell you what Prodigy sound like but I can tell you that they’re best enjoyed with a solid group of friends, after filling up on delicious tacos, with vape-filled bubbles flying over the crowd, rain optional.
Ásdís – Ok, the rain was maybe not the best part of this evening, but that didn’t stop anybody in having a great time. Prodigy were situated at Valhalla, the biggest stage. I didn’t manage to get very close, and as I’m not the tallest, I feel like I didn’t really connect to the show. The light show they had was impressive and matched the music perfectly. Hearing their most famous hit songs was great, but perhaps my expectations were too high.
Gréta – Novelist wasn’t the only wunderkind at the festival last night, Iceland has got it’s very own Aron Can! Aron is currently one of the most popular musicians in Iceland, and recently got the nation’s attention when he had to get a signed letter from his mother in order to get to play the Aldrei fór ég suður festival this Easter! Despite his young age, he knows how to put on a show and I was dancing happily along to his shamelessly fun songs about having full pockets and no shame.
Ásdís – A young Icelandic rapper who has gained popularity in a very short time. He didn’t even have to sing half of the time, as everybody knew the lyrics. He has the most beautiful voice, he’s young, charming and a talented musician. What more do we need?
Gréta – When Aron wrapped his set up, there wasn’t a lot left on the program but Kiasmos were doing their thing on the Hel stage – INDOORS. Not only was getting inside the Laugardalshöll stadium a welcome break from the dampness outside, Kiasmos were also pretty good. The stage looked great, their music quickly got us in a dance trance, and if you can’t have a good time dancing with friends while your coats dry hanging from the fence around the sound technician, when can you? It was the perfect end to a great night and I’m already dreading the fact that tonight is the last night.
Ásdís – I was happy to go inside Hel, as the rain and cold had taken it’s toll on me. Kiasmos never fail in doing good music. The huge concert hall had been turned to a nightclub and it was a perfect ending of the evening. We hung our raincoats to dry and forgot ourselves in a dance.