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Poppsaga: Iceland's Pop Scene 1972-1977

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Timothy Monger
Long before bands like the Sugarcubes, Sigur R?s, and Of Monsters and Men became known on the world's stage, Icelandic pop acts like Change and Pelican did their best to launch careers outside of their remote country's rocky shores. In the 1970s, the island's small scene largely consisted of bands playing American and British rock covers at local balls. If bands wanted to make a real go of it with original material, their options were quickly exhausted and required journeys abroad to record their music and try to convince foreign labels to take a chance on them. This colorful era of Icelandic pop is documented on Poppsaga: Iceland's Pop Scene 1972-1977, a 19-song ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Timothy Monger
Long before bands like the Sugarcubes, Sigur Rós, and Of Monsters and Men became known on the world's stage, Icelandic pop acts like Change and Pelican did their best to launch careers outside of their remote country's rocky shores. In the 1970s, the island's small scene largely consisted of bands playing American and British rock covers at local balls. If bands wanted to make a real go of it with original material, their options were quickly exhausted and required journeys abroad to record their music and try to convince foreign labels to take a chance on them. This colorful era of Icelandic pop is documented on Poppsaga: Iceland's Pop Scene 1972-1977, a 19-song collection of rare cuts by bands who wanted desperately to be the next Savoy Brown, Free, or Sweet. As is the nature in small artistic communities, everybody played with everybody else and many of the bands featured on this compilation are slightly rearranged variations of each other. Following the breakup of Svanfríður ("Woman of Our Day" and the excellent acoustic ballad "What's Hidden There"), the various members formed Change (whose bubblegum single "Yaketty Yak, Smacketty Smack" comes off like a less-memorable Tommy Roe) and Pelican (who did fairly able take on the Move's power pop sound with "Jenny Darling"). Further down the chain, singer Pétur Kristjánsson, after getting sacked from an American-label-hungry Pelican, formed the hard rock group Paradís (the strange single "Rabbits") and then Poker (whose single "Driving in the City" sports the even stranger, passionately sung chorus "What did you do with your eyebrows? Baby, don't go!"). For aficionados of unusual rock compilations and mid-'70s pop curiosities, Poppsaga is certainly a fun listen and Dr. Gunni's liner notes are informative and totally entertaining. Still, most of the tracks here feel like second-tier versions of the era's popular styles and offer no real cultural distinction that would identify them as Icelandic. Had they received better distribution or exposure, some of these songs might have had a chance in bigger markets, but by and large, the music on Poppsaga is fun, but underwhelming.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/4/2014
  • Label: Imports
  • EAN: 5013929599437
  • Catalog Number: 2492916
  • Sales rank: 337,013

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Jenny Darling - Pelican (3:11)
  2. 2 Lazy London Lady - Change (3:13)
  3. 3 Superman - Paradis (2:29)
  4. 4 Woman of Our Day - Svanfríður (3:09)
  5. 5 Don't Try To Fool Me - Jóhann G. Jóhannssonn (3:30)
  6. 6 What's Hidden There - Svanfríður (4:06)
  7. 7 Yaketty Yak, Smacketty Smack - Change (3:14)
  8. 8 I Need a Woman - Jóhann G. Jóhannssonn (3:02)
  9. 9 Days Pass Me By - Celsíus (3:15)
  10. 10 Blue Jean Queen - Magnus Thor (3:57)
  11. 11 Driving In the City (2:49)
  12. 12 Rabbits - Paradis (3:09)
  13. 13 Joe the Mad Rocker - Jóhann G. Jóhannssonn (2:39)
  14. 14 Mary Jane - Magnús & Jóhann (4:01)
  15. 15 Get On To a Sure Thing (3:42)
  16. 16 Candy Girl - The Pal Brothers (2:16)
  17. 17 My Glasses - Pelican (1:57)
  18. 18 Take Me To the Sun (4:38)
  19. 19 Poker - Celsíus (3:50)
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Album Credits

Technical Credits
Mark Stafford Reissue Producer
Vitalis Composer
Dr. Gunni Liner Notes
Kieron Tyler Liner Notes, Reissue Producer
Simon Murphy Remastering
Paul Mccallum Artwork
Jóhann Helgason Composer
Birgir Hrafnsson Composer
Magnus Thor Sigmundsson Composer
Jóhann G. Jóhannssonn Composer
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