Ólafur Arnalds

Ólafur Arnalds

The Icelandic Ólafur Arnalds has acquired in the course of a few years the reputation of being one of the most brilliant and most young composers in the world. He is an artist who combines a neo-classical style with a variety of influences, which range from Electronica reaches to the minimalism. And although he feeds his music from a variety of sources, the course is always retains its own unique sound. Since it with "Eulogy For Evolution" debuted in 2007, has realized from the small Reykjavik suburb Mosfellsbaer under his name a number of different projects of the 26-year-old. At concerts in a smaller scale, in which the intimacy of his performance and personality always shone through, Arnalds has presented his works on tours throughout Europe, North America and China. With "For Now I Am Winter" he now presents his third studio album, on which he has clearly removed from the sound, for which he was previously known.

Especially in recent years, Arnalds has developed as a composer and artist quite rapidly. This is not least the fact that it has significantly expanded the range of his work. Since 2009, he wrote several soundtracks for films and television series, including for the black comedy "Another Happy Day", the upcoming ITV drama "Broad Church" and Vanessa Hudgens film "Gimme Shelter". His music has also been in Hollywood hits like "The Hunger Games - The Hunger Games" and the action film "Looper" (feat Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Emily Blunt) used. Moreover Arnalds brought "Found Songs" (2009) and "Living Room Songs" (2011) two EPs out that he now offered his fans to download. Both contain pieces he had composed in each case within one day. The songs from the first EP he released on the same day via his Twitter and Facebook pages, the second with accompanying videos through its social media channels and its website.

Thanks to its eclecticism found Ólafur Arnalds own niche in the very diverse scene, whose range extends from the ambient works Max Richter About the breathtaking soundscapes of his countrymen Sigur Ros to the neo-classical compositions of Jóhann Jóhannsson.

With fresh ideas also provided him repeatedly collaborations and side projects like the Electronica band Kiasmos Janus Rasmussen, the EP "Share" Nils Frahm or collaboration with choreographer Wayne McGregor at the ballet "Dyad 1909 '. "I think such a thing is absolutely necessary," says Arnalds. "If you never working with someone else, you do not have, from which one can learn." And that Arnalds is an artist who is careful not to move in retracted tracks, he now proves with "For Now I Am Winter ".

The most notable and most visible aspect of "For Now I Am Winter" is how much unmittlebarer and bold is the album compared to its predecessors. While dominating the pieces of his last studio album "... and theyhave escaped the weight of darkness" from the sound of the piano and strings were (and the electronics only the decoration served), this time he designed the compositions instrumental considerably more complex. This wins the music a different dynamic, although the final product is structured conventional in many respects. Arnalds ideas are also held more pop than before.

this conscious change pioneered at already when he began early last year to write the pieces for the new album. After a few months he had the Kompositionenim principle already finished, but something was missing easy. "I was standing the whole album, but it was similar to the previous too. It was good, but it turned for me no great step forward, "says Arnalds. Then a friend encouraged him during a call to not to confine itself to the music through new channels such as Twitter to spread, but "innovative deal with the actual music." Arnalds which provides its community with Facebook, Twitter and his website daily with messages about his work, understood the well-intentioned jab and took it to heart. And so he began again to at virtually zero and rejected the previous approaches. FOr the drafting of the new orchestral arrangements he sought the help of the American composer Nico Muhly. "I asked him to take the already written pieces and equip colored. So if I had a synth line that consisted of only two notes, then he should go and distribute these two notes in different ways to thirty different instruments. "

The music of "For Now I Am Winter" thereby won breathing space, able to grow and flourish and highlight the dynamic change better. The minimalism of previous albums is clearly receded into the background. But the most dramatic change is that this time he worked with a singer. had been planned already in the first two albums, working with a famous singer. But then took Ólafur Arnalds from this idea back distance. "It fit just do not manage," he admits. "It seemed so forced before, as if we were not trying for the right reasons." Then he worked with Arnor Dan Arnarson, the lead singer of the band Agent Fresco in Ryuichi Sakamoto's charity project for victims of Fukushima together , The piece of this project "Old Skin" can now be heard on this album. And the collaboration with Arnarson was so fertile that the singer equal yet able to participate in three other pieces: "For Now I Am Winter", "Reclaim" and "A Stutter".

"I am convinced that this album is by far the best I've ever done," Ólafur Arnalds concludes. "I'm really happy that I decided to try something else."

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