Prinspóló is not only the name of the Icelanders' most popular chocolate bar (originally from Poland) but also the alter-ego of creative mastermind Svavar Pétur Eysteinsson.
In the beginning Prinspóló was just a one-man band but nowadays the band is rather a collaboration of four brilliant musicians: Lóa Hlín Hjálmtýsdóttir (singer of the band FM Belfast), Logi Höskuldsson (of the band Sudden Weather Change), Kristján Freyr Halldórsson (of the band Reykjavík!) and of course front man Svavar Pétur Eysteinsson (singer of Skakkamanage).
In 2009 Prinspóló gained some popularity with the release of their first EP Einn Heima featuring the catchy hit single Átján og hundrad (“Eighteen and hundred”), a song about an 18-year-old boy falling in love with a 100-year-old lady).
Jukk was released by Kimi Records in June 2011 and it is the band’s very first LP. It exceeds all expectations. My expectations, that is.
Prinspóló's musical style has often been described as acoustic indie pop music with a lo-fi sound. I'd say it's that and even more. It's like something you've probably never heard before.
All nine songs on Jukk are dominated by characteristic, melodic guitar riffs and Eysteinsson's distinctive voice.
Whenever you get used to a certain tune the melody suddenly changes and the song drifts into something new.
As for the lyrics: Eysteinsson is known for his witty word games and eloquent sense of humor which adds an additional twist to the songs.
The only drop of bitterness here is the fact that non-Icelandic speakers won't be able to understand the brilliant lyrics. Oh, how I wish the whole world spoke Icelandic!
Among other things, the songs featured on Jukk deal with everyday topics like old people (“Njótum afans” = “Let's enjoy the grandfather”), Spaghetti Bolognese (“Hakk og spaghetti”), brightly-colored candy (“Skaerlitad gúmmuladi”), hips (“Mjadmir”) and love (“Gaeran” = “slut”).
Funny and clever lyrics combined with catchy and beautiful music makes listening to Jukk never boring or dull but turn it into a pure delight full of twists, surprises and rainbows.
It's refreshing to come across a band whose music is so honest and unpretentious and floats along easily.
When I listened to the album for the first time it seemed a bit sparse and ramshackle but after a while I got the sense of how masterly and skillfully Eysteinsson has arranged and interwoven all the elements.
To me, the album's highlight is certainly “Nidrá strönd” (“Down at the beach”). Check out the official video on Youtube.
It's also a pleasure to watch Prinspóló's vivid and charismatic live performances with the band members wearing their trademark paper crowns. Indeed, they are royal.
So far Prinspóló has acquired a certain fan base in Iceland; hopefully the rest of the world will discover Prinspóló’s genius as well.
Yes, I'm enchanted.
I hope you will be, too, after buying the music of Prinspóló, for example at the great online record shop Havarí.
You won't regret it.
Katharina Hauptmann – [email protected]
Katharina Hauptmann is a bartender who spends her time reading, writing and enjoying the sweet side of life with her friends. Films and music have always been a great passion in her life. She grew up in a family of classically trained musicians from whom she developed her love for opera. After moving to Iceland she has devoted herself to the vivid Icelandic art and music scene. Her favorite music? Good music.