This past Saturday, our friends at KEX Hostel threw a party for KEXP, and anyone in Reykjavík who wanted to come, which they called KEXPORT, featuring 12 incredible Icelandic bands performing in a marathon 12-hour set! Assembled were some of our good friends and some we had yet to meet and discover. Fan favorites Snorri Helgason, Agent Fresco, and Sudden Weather Change performed terrific sets — they keep getting better and better. We were blown away by Sóley, The Heavy Experience, and Kiriyama Family, some of the newer bands we recorded last year at Airwaves, and we’re excited to hear much more new bands from brand new bands like Tilbury, Dream Central Station, and Human Woman. What is always amazing about the Icelandic music scene is that not only is every band unique, but they are masterful in what they do… in a way that no other music scene can compare! Good Icelandic hip-hop is impossible, you say? We thought the same thing about Icelandic reggae until we heard Hjálmar, who opened up the KEXPORT marathon. And though I couldn’t understand a word Úlfur Úlfur spoke, their dynamic rap was captivating, and they certainly drew the largest Icelandic crowd! We were honored, though, to have Ghostigital close the night. The godfather of Icelandic punk, Einar Örn, former member of The Sugarcubes, and revered producer Curver, were joined by Einar’s son, Kaktus, on mini-flugelhorn and Human Woman DJ Gísli Galdur Thorgeirsson for a frenetic set of crazed paranoia set to an unstoppable beat. Despite the weather being as varied and unpredictable as the day’s music, KEXPORT was without a doubt a spectacular success for all family, friends, and fans involved. We only wished we could bring all KEXP listeners to the event… but there’s always Iceland Airwaves coming up in late October (by the way, if you want to get tickets, buy them soon as the increasingly popular festival is selling out faster and faster each year). But no matter what, KEXP will be back, broadcasting again from KEX Hostel and now with more new bands to share with you. Keep listening to KEXP and checking the KEXP Blog over the next few months to hear more from bands like Tilbury, Human Woman, Dream Central Station, Kiriyama Family, and many others!
Here are some photos I was fortunate to be on-hand to take, as a guest of Iceland and the KEX Hostel, to share with you:
The Heavy Experience:
Sudden Weather Change:
Dream Central Station: