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Johann Johannsson - Dís

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Dís

Johann Johannsson

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On his 2005 album, Jóhann Jóhannsson continued his style-scrambling mix of impulses with the gusto evident on earlier work. The opening "Banlol Northursins" crosses everything from winsome lo-fi organ pop to space rock zone to slow and steady funk breaks and more, with an aesthetic that can best be summed up as beholden to none of these styles in particular. It makes even more sense as a result that the immediately following song, "10 Rokkstig," is a sharp, peppy electro-rock number that should be concluding a triumphant teen dramedy epic in space. The album's flow of often short, discrete songs further emphasizes a sense of the soundtrack-for-the-unfilmed movie, mood setters that work all over the map in the best of ways. There's elegant piano-led moodiness like "Já, Hemmi Minn" and "Ónefnt" that Wong Kar-Wai might kill for (especially when the latter breaks into a slow waltz groove). Meantime, songs like "Eíripídes, Og Neðtipídel," with its brawling drum punch, and deep bass growls against softer tones and bells toward the end add a peppy tinge to the tune. There's a revisiting of sounds as the album continues, but sometimes in unexpected ways -- if "Ljósrit" is the first song over again, it's a shorter and even moodier version. Perhaps the most enjoyable thing about Dis is how clearly Jóhannsson embraces and then reuses so many elements of what was labeled as glitch or experimental techno for his own particular ends. It would be a disservice to say he adds heart to such music, but the more immediate embrace of sonic melancholia and sweetness on songs like "Pynnkudagur" -- yet another roll-the-credits song of the highest quality -- as piano, subharmonics, soft electronic melodies, and distant voices combine, can't be denied.
© Ned Raggett /TiVo

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Dís

Johann Johannsson

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1
Bangkok Norðursins From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:04:57

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

2
10 Rokkstig From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:11

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Orri Jónsson, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

3
Saumavél From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:49

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

4
Gúmmískór From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:01:11

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

5
Já, Hemmi Minn From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:25

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

6
Efripídes Og Neðripídes From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:03:17

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Þorgeir Guðmundsson, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

7
Jarðaför From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:03:50

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Þorgeir Guðmundsson, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

8
Þynnkudagur From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:03:24

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

9
Ruslpóstur From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:13

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

10
Ljósrit From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:03

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

11
Flugeldar From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:20

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

12
Hótel Borg From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:18

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Þorvaldur Gröndal, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

13
Ónefnt From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:03:43

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Þorvaldur Gröndal, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

14
Flugeldar II From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:02:09

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

15
Dís (Long Version) From „Dís“ Soundtrack
00:18:30

Johann Johannsson, Composer, Producer, MainArtist - Ragnar Kjartansson, Author - Hilmar Jensson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Bragi Valdimar Skúlason, Author - Viðar Hákon Gíslason, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Ragnheidur Gröndal, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jón Skuggi, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Hronmar Inginnisson, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2004 Jóhann Jóhannsson, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

Album Description

On his 2005 album, Jóhann Jóhannsson continued his style-scrambling mix of impulses with the gusto evident on earlier work. The opening "Banlol Northursins" crosses everything from winsome lo-fi organ pop to space rock zone to slow and steady funk breaks and more, with an aesthetic that can best be summed up as beholden to none of these styles in particular. It makes even more sense as a result that the immediately following song, "10 Rokkstig," is a sharp, peppy electro-rock number that should be concluding a triumphant teen dramedy epic in space. The album's flow of often short, discrete songs further emphasizes a sense of the soundtrack-for-the-unfilmed movie, mood setters that work all over the map in the best of ways. There's elegant piano-led moodiness like "Já, Hemmi Minn" and "Ónefnt" that Wong Kar-Wai might kill for (especially when the latter breaks into a slow waltz groove). Meantime, songs like "Eíripídes, Og Neðtipídel," with its brawling drum punch, and deep bass growls against softer tones and bells toward the end add a peppy tinge to the tune. There's a revisiting of sounds as the album continues, but sometimes in unexpected ways -- if "Ljósrit" is the first song over again, it's a shorter and even moodier version. Perhaps the most enjoyable thing about Dis is how clearly Jóhannsson embraces and then reuses so many elements of what was labeled as glitch or experimental techno for his own particular ends. It would be a disservice to say he adds heart to such music, but the more immediate embrace of sonic melancholia and sweetness on songs like "Pynnkudagur" -- yet another roll-the-credits song of the highest quality -- as piano, subharmonics, soft electronic melodies, and distant voices combine, can't be denied.
© Ned Raggett /TiVo

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