ÓLAFUR ARNALDS: Living Room Songs / A WINGED VICTORY FOR THE SULLEN A Winged Victory For The Sullen (Erased Tapes)

themilkman on Dec 16th 2011 12:40 am

Ólafur Arnalds: Living Room Songs A Winged Victory For The Sullen: A Winged Victory For The Sullen

Living Room Songs
Erased Tapes 2011
07 Tracks. 23mins01secs

A Winged Victory For The Sullen
Erased Tapes 2011
07 Tracks. 44mins31secs

Living Room Songs
Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Boomkat: CD | LP | DLD iTunes: DLD Spotify: STRM
A Winged Victory For The Sullen
Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Boomkat: CD | DLD iTunes: DLD

Two years ago, Icelandic musician and composer Ólafur Arnalds embarked on a week-long project for which he composed, recorded and released one track a day, which he made available to download for free on a special page, promoted through social networks. To complement these, he asked fans to email him pictures inspired by the music. The tracks were subsequently released as Found Songs. This gruelling schedule has clearly not deterred Arnalds who, last October, pulled a similar stunt by recording seven new pieces in the living room of his Reykjavik apartment, this time adding a new layer to the project by filming his daily performances. The tracks were once again made given away on Arnalds’s website.

Playing piano on every track, Arnalds is here surrounded by friends and, on one occasion, family, who add string works and electronic touches. Continue Reading »

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ÓLAFUR ARNALDS: … And They Have Escaped The Weight Of Darkness (Erased Tapes)

themilkman on Jun 9th 2010 11:27 pm

Ólafur Arnalds: ... And They Have Escaped The Weight Of Darkness

… And They Have Escaped The Weight Of Darkness
Erased Tapes 2010
09 Tracks. 43mins28secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Norman Records: CD | LP iTunes: DLD

Financial collapse and clouds of volcanic ash have replaced quirky experimental pop music as Iceland’s main exports in recent months, so it is good to see that, beside all this, life carries on as normal and this island, caught between the European and North American tectonic plates in the middle of the North Atlantic ocean, still delivers more than its fair share of progressive music.

One of the country’s most recent envoys is twenty-three year old composer and pianist Ólafur Arnalds who, in the space of one album and three mini-albums has started to make more than a splash on the international music scene. His last couple of projects have taken him in entirely different directions. On one hand, he set himself the challenge to compose, record and publish a track per day for a whole week, using Twitter as main vehicle to promote the work, and inviting listeners to post their own photos on a Flickr account as illustration to the music. Continue Reading »

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ÓLAFUR ARNALDS: Dyad 1909 (Erased Tapes)

themilkman on Jan 8th 2010 12:57 am

Ólafur Arnalds: Dyad 1909

Dyad 1909
Erased Tapes 2009
07 Tracks. 24mins33secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP Amazon US: CD | DLD Boomkat: CD | LP | DLD iTunes: DLD

Only a few months after Erased Tapes released Peter Broderick’s score for Adrienne Hart’s contemporary dance production Falling From Trees, it is the turn of Icelandic composer Ólafur Arnalds to present the work British choreographer Wayne McGregor commissioned for his piece Dyad 1909, which his company, Random Dance, premiered at Sadler’s Wells in London last October as part of In The Spirit Of Diaghilev, a series of performances dedicated to the creator of the famous Ballets Russes, which were set up a hundred years ago. McGergor’s Dyad 1909 is inspired by the great technological development between two expeditions to reach the South Pole, one, in 1909, on foot, and another, twenty years later, the year the Ballets Russes were dissolved, by plane. Continue Reading »

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themilkman on Dec 13th 2009 07:52 pm

The 2009 Review

Twelve months compiled into just twenty albums. From the thousands of records released each year, it is difficult to get even a handful on the site, and even more difficult to decide which ones were the best of the lot. This is however the twenty albums that have marked 2009 for themilkfactory.

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ÓLAFUR ARNALDS: Found Songs (Erased Tapes)

themilkman on Sep 2nd 2009 12:59 am

Ólafur Arnalds: Found Songs

Found Songs
Erased Tapes 2009
07 Tracks. 20mins26secs

Icon: arrow CD: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Boomkat LP: Boomkat Download: Amazon UK | iTunes | Boomkat

In the last year, Twitter has become the hottest social network phenomenon around, and it was only a matter of time before someone used its format as part of a specific project. This someone is Icelandic composer Ólafur Arnalds who, in the space of seven days last April, composed and recorded seven original tracks, which were then made available, one at a time, on a special page on the Erased Tapes website, for free. Each day, the public was invited to post pictures on Flickr that they felt related to the day’s track. Some of these have now been compiled in a booklet accompanying this remastered version, now made available as a limited edition CD and 10” mini album. Continue Reading »

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RIVAL CONSOLES: Helvetica / KIASMOS/RIVAL CONSOLES: 65/Milo (Erased Tapes)

themilkman on Mar 27th 2009 01:33 am

Rival Consoles: Helvetica

Erased Tapes 2009
04 Tracks. 12mins51secs
Format: 7”/Digital

Kiasmos/Rival Consoles: 65/Milo

Erased Tapes 2009
05 Tracks. 24mins36secs
Format: 12”/Digital

One of the most iconic type faces of our times, Helvetica celebrated its fiftieth anniversary a couple of years ago amidst a wide range of events across Europe, including the ABC123 EP by To Rococo Rot. Created in 1957 by designer Max Miedinger, Helvetica has since infiltrated just about every form of visual communication and become one of the most ubiquitous and versatile fonts, used equally successfully on public signage, record covers, advertising and art.

Versatile is an adjective that can also be applied to Ryan Lee West’s Rival Consoles, whose debut release, The Decadent EP, was published on Erased Tapes at the end of 2007. Released as a four track seven inch single and digital EP, Helvetica is a hell of an eclectic release. Continue Reading »

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themilkman on Jun 17th 2008 12:06 am


Twenty one year old Icelandic musician Ólafur Arnalds first appeared last year with his debut album, Eulogy For Evolution, released in the UK on the excellent Erased Tapes imprint, and instantly gathered some impressive critical praises for his widescreen contemporary classical music tinted with discreet electronics and hints of indie. Earlier this year, Arnalds returned with a more minimal EP, Variations Of Static, on which he let electronics texture his work more prominently. With an opening slot for Sigur Rós during the summer and a major tour already in full swing, Ólafur took a few moments to talk about his musical background, the elitism in modern classical music and the challenges of taking the genre to a young audience, and being the next big thing to come out of Iceland.

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ÓLAFUR ARNALDS:Variations Of Static (Erased Tapes)

themilkman on May 21st 2008 12:41 am

Ólafur Arnalds: Variations Of Static

Variations Of Static
Erased Tapes 2008
05 Tracks. 21mins39secs
Format: CD/10″/Digital

Hailing from the small Icelandic town of Mosfellbær, situated just outside of Reykjavik, young classical musician Ólafur Arnalds released his debut album, Eulogy For Evolution, at the end of 2007. His approach shares with that of compatriot Jóhann Jóhannsson a taste for combining often melancholic piano or string compositions with found sounds and electronics and, more surprisingly, occasional elements of indie rock.

Variations Of Static, Arnalds’s second offering, was originally made available as a limited tour edition. Recorded at home, with Arnalds on the piano and a string quartet providing the accompaniment, these compositions feature more prominent electronics, while a recurring computerised voice appears at regular interval, evoking a similar use on Jóhann Jóhannsson’s 2002 album Englabörn. Continue Reading »

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ÓLAFUR ARNALDS: Eulogy For Evolution (Erased Tapes)

themilkman on Jan 21st 2008 12:59 am

Ólafur Arnalds: Eulogy For Evolution

Eulogy For Evolution
Erased Tapes 2007
08 Tracks. 39mins36secs

Ólafur Arnalds is a young musician composer hailing from a small suburban town just outside of Reykjavik, who, besides drumming in two separate hardcore bands, focuses on modern classical music, although his work can also occasionally include elements of indie rock. Eulogy For Evolution is Arnalds’s debut album. Released on rising London-based imprint Erased Tapes, it was recorded over four months in early 2006 and features eight tracks, identified only by numbers, most of them led by melancholic piano lines and beautiful strings brushes, evoking the work of fellow countryman Jóhann Jóhannsson or composers Max Richter and Nico Muhly. Continue Reading »

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