SOAK opened up at Harpa Nordurljos tonight, and she opened strong. No introduction, no hello, just a simple jump into her eerie and mystical sound. SOAK, or Bridie Monds-Watson, creates an ethereal sound worthy of Bjork at times. The set-up was great because only SOAK, the guitarist/pianist and the drummer were on the stage. They formed a triangle, and SOAK was not front and center, as most lead singers may tend to be. Even though she did not speak to the crowd until after two songs, she used her heavenly vocals and lyrics. When she did speak to the crowd, the one and only time she did, she asked how everyone was, and mentioned how refreshed her and her crew was because they had gone to Blue Lagoon earlier in the day. While her vocals were great throughout her set, her voice reached a near-Bjork level as mentioned before in “B a noBody.”
Another interesting point to make is that for nearly every song in her 40 minute set, she switched guitars before each song and from what could be seen she only used the same guitar once. Her fellow guitarist’s skills were a great contrast to her soft-spokenness yet intense dedication to the sound she created. Before the song “Sea Creatures,” SOAK met her
guitarist midway on the stage and gave him a sweet kiss which was a great lead-in to this somewhat romantic song. Finally, to tie back in to her rapport. While she may have only spoken once, SOAK was not one of those artists who constantly needed to talk during their set. SOAK let her music do the talking for her.
BC CAMPLIGHT, or Brian Christinzio, was obviously the class-clown in school. He was overzealous all night, dramatic moves and actions that matched the climactic sound he and his group created. He wore sunglasses and a hat for the entirety of the show, and constantly joked with the crowd. Things like saying that “See how no one is taking pictures of me?” as he pointed to the photographers below him, and when he kept fighting with the mic and its cord telling it to “Let (expletive) go!” He opened the set with “Should Have Gone to School”, where he had his emotional screams throughout, which created others in the crowd to scream with him. Stephen Mutch, his extremely talented bassist did not miss a step and created an insanely jazzy tune that flowed so greatly with BC CAMPLIGHT’s intriguing differing sound. The synth add-in along with the punchy drum-line flowed seamlessly. BC CAMPLIGHT’s music ranges from soft dark ballad’s to dance-rock, but the part of the night that got the crowd laughing was when BC CAMPLIGHT delayed mid-song to find his drink, that his bassist then got for him. He proceeded to explain he doesn’t usually stop songs for his drinks. Then went on to down his drink as Hattie Combe, another vocalist and tambourine/small drum player, started the song from where it left off. He definitely knew how to close out a set though, with a loud (nearly metal) song with extreme lights and sound while he pounded on the piano as the stage faded to black. All in all, a crazy fun repertoire of musical talent!
This R&B soul group brought a little extra oomph to Harpa Nordurljos tonight. Saun and Starr did this by the most fabulous dramatic introduction of the night. The musicians got on stage, played jazzy soulful music in anticipation for a few minutes, then one of the guitarists came up to the mic and announced “The one and only, the ONE and ONLY, SAUN AND STARR!” and these two magnificent women walked out, and swept across the stage to their mics. They then introduced themselves and discussed how exactly they got to Iceland, which was the Bronx, Brooklyn to Georgia and then France, then finally Iceland. Saun and Starr synchronize and harmonize in every way possible, be it their movements or their vocals, these two build off of one another in their own exclusive way. It’s apparent that these women love what they do, and that’s shown in their genuine smiles and jives through every note. They started out their set with “Hot Shot” and after two songs, started acting out a scene before “Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah” that showed their overall talent. Their act is truly tried and true and they know exactly how to work a crowd and make their music stick. A part of the night that seemed to strike a chord was when Saun introduced a song by telling a personal story about it, saying that the two women were on the way to Daptone Records to record a song Daptone wanted to show them, when Saun received word that her father had passed away. That song is “If Only”, and with these lyrics, “If only, if only, if only I had one more day with you. One more kiss, one more chance to prove, and if only I had this to share with you it would be all I need. If only, if only…” Saun bared her soul on the stage, which helps make this act even more relatable. Saun and Starr is an all-out performance filled with exquisite vocals, talented musicians, funny jokes/scenes and great rapport.