The Sugarcubes were my first Icelandic music love, but they were swiftly followed into my early 90s Icelandic pop affections by Bellatrix, or Kolrassa krókríðandi (translation available here), as we used to know them. They were an (initially) all-girl punk-rock band who I would listen to over and over again.
20 or so years later, lead singer Eliza Newman is still making music. In the intervening years, she has training as an opera singer and learned loads of fancy instruments, and moved (mainly I think) to London but those pop tunes are still magical.
Despite that move to London I have still seen Eliza perform more often in Reykjavik than in London, most recently at Iceland Airwaves 2010 headlining the night curated by Trúbatrix - the umbrella which promotes Icelandic female singers.
Happily then, this morning a new CD from Eliza arrived in my mail. The new record is called "Pie In The Sky" and contains 10 (or 11 if you 'go digital') new but reassuringly familiar sounding tunes - Eliza writes classic pop and has a beautiful voice and an ear for instrumental embellishments. I've only heard the record twice but those tunes are working away at embedding themselves into my brain, and they're very welcome. Hopeless Case, and particularly Star Wars Bar are the early favourites.
I was lucky enough to interview Eliza just before she played at Iceland Airwaves 2010, you can read it right here if you wish.
And, finally, I'm resolved to upping my attendance record at her reasonably frequent London shows, so I hope to see you at one of these upcoming opportunities to hear some sweet pop songs:
Mar 10 AAA, Kensington High Street
Mar 15 The London Museum
Mar 20 The Lexington London
Mar 26 The Scream Lounge, London
Mar 31 The Monarch, London