Busy as always, BlackPlastic is running a little bit late this month. Having gone to the musically diverse Iceland last month BlackPlastic's November song of the month shall be something discovered in Reykjavik.
Johann Johannson - 10 Rokkstig
Whilst stumbling through the icy cold of Reykjavik BlackPlastic happened to stumble upon a record shop by the name 12tonar. Initially lured in by the coffee advertised on the sign outside, on the inside BlackPlastic found a friendly group of staff who made customers free espresso and offered portable CD players to customers so they could listen to any music that took their fancy. Not only that but the shop is apparently an old haunt for the likes of Sigur RÃ³s and Mum.
BlackPlastic soon realised this was more than a record shop, with many of the most popular CDs being released on the 12tonar label, including several that are regarded as Iceland's finest music. One such CD was Johann Johannson's Dis, nominated for the Icelandic Music Awards in 2004, which is inspired by life in the strange capital that is Reykjavik. Dis transfers both the coldness of the landscape and the warmth of the people onto record at the same time, but it is one song inparticularr that really captured BlackPlastic's imagination.
10 Rokkstig (no idea about the name) stands out from an otherwise electronic album through its use of live guitars and drums in a way that stillmanagess to feel incredibly warm. An instrumental that lasts just over 2 minutes it somehow manages to sparkle in a way that feels so unique. The guitars throb with an excitement that seem to just come out of nowhere and is complimented perfectly by the use of electronics. This is a song that somehow snaps, crackle and pops so much throughout its short lifetime that it is impossible to walk away untouched.
Sadly BlackPlastic has been unable to find anywhere outside Iceland where you can purchase Dis, but if you do find somewhere please post a comment, since there are some other 12tonar releases I would love to get my hands on. Otherwise you will need to take a trip to Iceland. Just keep your wallet close since Iceland's small economy and the exchange rates can make a trip to 12tonar rather pricey if you are as into music as BlackPlastic.
P.S. In all seriousness, if you go to Iceland it is worth bearing in mind that some CDs are available in the duty free shop at the airport (you can visit on the way into the country as well as the way out) and they are likely to stock this release.