KEXP at Iceland Airwaves, Day 1: Mr. Silla

photos by Jim Bennett

Mr. Silla is a relatively new band from Sigurlaug Gísladóttir (aka Silla), one of the frontwomen of múm, one of Iceland’s most prolific exports. Another Icelandic “supergroup”, Mr. Silla features members of Sin Fang, amiina, Seabear, Kimono and other bands. While they have yet to produce an album yet, the group blew us away last year when we filmed them at Airwaves, so much so that we had to invite them to perform live during this year’s live broadcast from KEX hostel in Reykjavík during Iceland Airwaves. And as we knew they would, they blew us away again.

For this set, Mr. Silla opened with “Kureki,” a heavy, downtempo song with big post-rock vibes and strong, wailing vocals. Next was “One Step,” an atmospheric songs with subtle, ethereal vocals. Things really started to pick up with “Up/Down.” True to its name, it had a slow, deliberate, one-two beat, reminiscent of Spoon’s “I Turn My Camera On.” This was followed by an incredible, messy rock and roll cover of Stevie Nicks’ “Wild Heart.” They closed the set with “Japan,” a killer rock song with wailing Karen O-esque vocals. The crowd, packed tightly into the KEX library and gastropub, finally started to do some dancing (a perfect warmup for FM Belfast’s upcoming set!). Afterwards, they promised that they are working on an album... and based on their incredible performance today, we’ll be holding them to that!

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