Californian, Ryan Karazija started Low Roar when he moved to Reykavik, Iceland in 2010. It is easy to attribute his atmospheric music to Iceland. It immediately calls to mind the landscape feel as elicited by two of it’s most famous exports: Bjork and Sigur Ros. His eponymous 2011 debut, also showcased his delicate vocals, a cadence similar to Thom Yorke’s, that against the rich, cinematic background, found favor with fans of Radiohead; and bands inspired by them such as Other Lives.
Two years after Once in a Long, Long While…,they have just released a new album called ross. Tomorrow in concert a Sala Sidecar.
K Á R Y Y N is a Los Angeles based artist whose Syrian upbringing is intrinsic to her art. A case in point is debut single ‘Aleppo’, an emotional tribute to the Syrian city, torn apart by the civil war that has devastated the country. Questions of identity and dislocation are clearly at the heart of her practice, a point further emphasized by the use of her track Moving Masses in Marina Abramovich’s opera ‘Of Light’, which received praise from none other than Björk following its premiere in the Icelandic capital.
While parallels between the two singers can be found, both in K Á R Y Y N‘s astonishing vocal range and in her favouring of glitchy, electronic production, it’s the latter artists’ sensibility to her upbringing and her desire to join the ancient to the modern, the east to the west, and the underground to the mainstream in her music that marks her out as a true original. “Sometimes I feel like my voice belongs to my ancestors”, she has said, in relation to her Armenian grandparents, who escaped the genocide of the previous century, only to experience the current war in this one. With a voice that seems to contain all this inherited pain, while at the same time having the ability to soothe it, K Á R Y Y N‘s performance at SonarComplex will be nothing short of revelatory.
Dead Can Dance, started in the early ’80s by Lisa Gerrard and Brendan Perry, are considered one of the most influential bands around. They’ve inspired the likes of Björk, Enigma, Florence and the Machine, This Mortal Coil and Cocteau Twins. The duo are back in Barcelona to play two nights at BARTS as part of their tour called A Celebration. Life & Works 1980-2019, where they celebrate their 40th anniversary of a career filled with beautiful and eclectic music. Tonight and tomorrow.
FKA twigs has returned with her first new song in over three years, “Cellophane.” The song comes with a breathless, ethereal new video directed by frequent Björk collaborator Andrew Thomas Huang.
“Cellophane” is one of FKA twigs’ most personal tracks to date, dealing with a period in her life when she felt she had to rebuild herself from scratch.
The stunning video accompanying the track finds twigs pole-dancing, falling through space and eventually being buried in pink mud. She trained for months in advance with pole choreographer Kelly Yvonne to learn the impressive acrobatics she performs in the video.
It’s here! Thursday is the first full day of Primavera Sound 2018, with a line-up that, as we’ve come to expect, is extensive and impressive, and starts off with a bang on this day that features headliners such as everyone’s favourite Islandic avant-garde artist, Björk, with her latest album, ‘Utopia’ (2017), on which she collaborated with Arca, who you’ll also be able to catch at the festival; and elegance as music with Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds, blasting out tracks from their emotional and a bit sad ‘Skeleton Tree’ (2016), which they’re performing for the first time in Barcelona. Also getting you moving between stages are Philadelphia band The War on Drugs, who, with ‘A Deeper Understanding’ (2017), have garnered as much praise as with their acclaimed previous album, ‘Lost in the Dream’ (2014), which had the international press kneeling at the feet of their classic rock; legendary band Sparks, that unclassifiable duo from Los Angeles made up of brothers Ron and Russel Mael, who present their 23rd album, ‘Hippopotamus’ (2017); the return of American hip hop artist Vince Staples; electronic and energetic pop from British trio Chvrches, with their much-anticipated new album, ‘Love Is Dead’ (2018); Fever Ray, a solo project for Swedish artist Karin Dreijer (The Knife), who’s also got a new album out, the contagious ‘Plunge’ (2017); electronica from Floating Points, also known as producer and doctor of neuroscience Sam Shepherd, performing live as well as a six-hour DJ set on Friday; Nils Frahm and his experimental electronica; the meloncholy of the all-women quartet Warpaint; iridescent psychedelic pop from New Zealanders Unknown Mortal Orchestra; and American artist Kelela, who impresses with her versatility and perfect adaptation to dominant trends in current electronica and pop.
Former Crystal Castles frontperson Alice Glass has released a new single and video. Titled “Without Love,” it’s the singer’s first foray since 2015’s “Stillbirth.” The video is her first as a solo artist. The clip was directed by Floria Sigismondi, who’s worked with Perfume Genius, Bjork, and Katy Perry.