This was originally written for Listen Before You Buy. Since then the band’s full-length album “My Head Is An Animal” has been released and received wonderful acclaim. You can buy it here, here & here.
With a charming penchant for anthemic chants, Icelandic based self-dubbed “six pack” Of Monsters And Men are bursting onto the worldwide music scene with a joyousness that’s hard to resist. Just one more reason for me to be depressed that I’m not attending SXSW 2012; the group will kick off their US tour with a performance there.
Little Talks’, which can be streamed and downloaded via Soundcloud below, is one of those songs that instantly gets under your skin. I think I listened to it six times the first day I heard it, like a salty snack I just had to have more and more. I mean, it really has everything I’ve ever loved, duets between male and female vocalists, a fanfare of horns, lovelorn desperate but hopeful lyrics, kicking drums and a “hey!” shout … and I’m not making any of this up! It really has all those parts, and even more. I dare you to only play it one time, I doubt that will be possible.
The rest of their EP, “Into The Woods”, flows in a similarly addicting manner. The second track, ‘Six Weeks’ continues the thumping drums at the forefront of the song. There is an urgency to this track, a victoriousness in their singing and a strength that is rare to hear in such a young band. Building off the drums, adding in layers of vocals and guitars that mimic the melody line the song slowly crescendos into a dramatic undertaking.
Then, dissolving into the balladic ‘Love Love Love; the band hits a lower register, both with female member Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir’s lovely gritty vocals, and, despite indications from the title, some more somber subject matter. Finishing up with ‘From Finner’ which strikes a balance between the earlier delightful rock-out jams and the more mellow tunes, the EP is well-balanced, finely tuned and certainly addicting. It is easy to see why KEXP dubbed these six musicians “easily the most buzzed about band” at Iceland Airwaves.
Don’t let Iceland and indie Seattle radio experts keep all this international music to themselves, stream ‘Little Talks’ and ‘Love Love Love’ right below, and check out the fantastic video for ‘Little Talks’ as well. This is a band that will soon be leaping off their little island straight into the mainstream radio, so keep your ears peeled for them, as their full length album “My Head is An Animal” will be released on April 3rd, 2012 via Universal Republic.