Music from the Northern Lattitudes sought.
October 24, 2013 10:10 AM   Subscribe

Every other year I throw a Nordic-themed winter solstice party to welcome the return of the sun. In addition to Nordic foods like Herring, meatballs, and Swedish fish I like to play music from the north. I want to branch out from Bjork, Sibelius and Abba. I have already downloaded the album from Árstíðir which was featured on metafilter. Can you suggest musicians/songs/bands/composers from Nordic countries (or from Arctic regions) that are sung in their native language rather than English?
posted by vespabelle to Media & Arts (38 answers total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
Is Iceland considered a Nordic country? Because Sigur Ros comes to mind.
posted by dfriedman at 10:13 AM on October 24, 2013 [6 favorites]

Paavoharju, from Finland
posted by gyusan at 10:22 AM on October 24, 2013 [2 favorites]

Tanya Tagaq.
posted by miles1972 at 10:23 AM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Gula Gula by Mari Boine Persen. She is Sami (formerly known as Lapp).

Iro by Värttinä. Three Finnish women.

I'd actually recommend their entire albums Gula Gula and Kokko, respectively. I have them both and like them a lot. (Which was a case of good luck, as I bought Gula Gula based solely on the cover art.)
posted by benito.strauss at 10:25 AM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Ranarim from Sweden. Absolutely wonderful music. More: 1 2 3
posted by pipeski at 10:26 AM on October 24, 2013

The Sami group Adjágas always take me back to the Arctic.
posted by Helga-woo at 10:42 AM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Are all genres acceptable? I don't listen to music of the enchanted elves of Snowgrace Kingdom--but since you've got Abba there, I'm thinking pop, rock, and rap may work.

Veronica Maggio is sort of a Swedish Amy Winehouse (or maybe more like Duffy--there was a joke in Sweden's Sonic magazine that if you say "Veronica Maggio" three times while looking in the mirror, you'll magically get a Pinot Grigio in your hand).

Håkan Hellström is a long-established indie belter.

Kapiten Röd is Swedish dancehall.

Familijen have an electric sort of sound.

Timbuktu raps, and is good.

Daniel Adams-Ray has a sort of eighties throwback sound.

Snook is Adams-Ray's old rap duo...

with Oskar Linnros who...

produced Veronica Maggio's winningest album.

I also like Flodeklinikken from Norway
posted by Admiral Haddock at 10:53 AM on October 24, 2013

Garmarna is a great Swedish folk-rock band.
posted by Area Man at 10:57 AM on October 24, 2013 [3 favorites]

Lordi is Finnish.
posted by OrangeDisk at 11:00 AM on October 24, 2013 [2 favorites]

Best answer: You can't go wrong with Hedningarna.
posted by fimbulvetr at 11:02 AM on October 24, 2013 [4 favorites]

Songs from the Cold Seas is an all-time favorite.
posted by MsVader at 11:06 AM on October 24, 2013

Music from Peer Gynt
posted by brujita at 11:15 AM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Well, there's the bad boys of Scandinavian folk rock, Hoven Droven. Picture a Swedish kid who grew up with posters of Hardanger fiddle players on one wall with Zep and King's X on another. There's also Anglagard, the region's premiere prog band, which should definitely cast a King Crimson chill over the proceedings.
posted by Ber at 11:23 AM on October 24, 2013 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I was gonna suggest Mari Boine and Värttinä myself (here, here, here some more Värttinä, all eminently danceable).

Some of Grieg's Peer Gynt might fit the bill. Also some Sibelius, for example some of the Lemminkäinen Suite, the opening movement of his Violin concerto, Tapiola etc.

On a similar note, Karoliina Kantelinen, Jarŋŋa, Sami yoiks, the kalevala
, here another one (I think if you find a beautiful reading of the English translation, that would be wonderful! It's got the most hypnotic rhythm and structure, and there is a beautiful English translation, don't remember whose). Also, Wimme Saari

Also, from the Feroe islands, Eivør Pálsdóttir.
posted by miorita at 11:39 AM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Yeah, Sigur Ros is a good bet here. Also Amina, who often play with Sigur Ros. They are both from Iceland. Some Sigur Ros songs are in Icelandic, and the others are in a made-up language. The music is beautiful, haunting, and powerful.

And Mum (there should be an accent over the u I think) is from Sweden.
posted by number9dream at 11:40 AM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Music from Peer Gynt

I don't know if it will work as party music, but Aase's Death is the perfect music for standing on a glacier and watching the sun return the morning after the solstice.

Either that, or New Day Rising. Minneapolis qualifies as Nordic, doesn't it?
posted by benito.strauss at 11:42 AM on October 24, 2013

Do you like metal? Oh, good....

Tyr, from the Faroe Islands. Most of their stuff is in Faroese.

Vintersorg, from Sweden! Math geek turned metalhead, he sings about things like Calculus and trees and Marie Curie. Most of it is in Swedish. And incidentally, he's also an elementary school teacher.

Both are outstanding, IMHO.
posted by spinifex23 at 11:49 AM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

In the folk-metal vein, why not try Finntroll, Trollfest, or for a slightly less Troll-themed twist, Korpiklaai?
posted by Naib at 12:09 PM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

More folk metal!




posted by Bodd at 12:42 PM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Theresa Andersson's Innan du Gar would qualify, though I have no idea what it's about. I assume it's in Swedish because she's Swedish.
posted by cnc at 1:08 PM on October 24, 2013

Swedish Party music?

Magnus Uggla (kung i baren.)
posted by three blind mice at 1:11 PM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Emilíana Torrini ?
posted by Blitz at 1:12 PM on October 24, 2013

kardemimmit are a folk quartet from Finland. Listen. I recommend the album.

I had dinner with these delightful young ladies about a month ago - they may still be in the US on tour.
posted by jaruwaan at 1:13 PM on October 24, 2013

Best answer: Party music people. That folk music is a drag!

Kent (Music non stop)

Tommy Nilsson (dina färger var blå)

Thomas Lundin (sommaren är kort)
posted by three blind mice at 1:31 PM on October 24, 2013

You want some Geir Jenssen (Bel Canto or Biosphere)
posted by Joh at 1:51 PM on October 24, 2013

How could I forget. I live two doors down from where Ted Gärdestad recorded sol, vind, and vatten!
posted by three blind mice at 2:12 PM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

Do you want pop music, dance music, classical, or folk music?
A few suggestions (Swedish):

Pop music: Can't go wrong with Per Gessle, maybe Mazarin (album)
Danceband music: Vikingarna
Classical: Johan Helmich Roman
Traditional music: Johanna Grüssner & Mika Pohjola singing Swedish traditional songs
posted by gemmy at 2:16 PM on October 24, 2013

Gyllene Tider (Sommartider)

All of mine are summer songs BTW, but no matter. No one in Scandinavia gets excited about the winter solstice and we are already mourning its rapid approach.
posted by three blind mice at 2:22 PM on October 24, 2013

Kaizers Orchestra!!!

And Ylvis
posted by goodbyewaffles at 2:29 PM on October 24, 2013

Nthing Garmarna, Hedningarna, and Paavoharju; and indeed just about anybody on NorthSide.
posted by Kaleidoscope at 4:51 PM on October 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

some others have mentioned the label &/or bands on it but, seriously, what you really want is the two compilations called Nordic Roots (volumes 1 & 2) from NorthSide

memail me if you would like a good mix of this Scandi awesomeness. happy to send it to you.
posted by jammy at 7:31 PM on October 24, 2013

Hjaltalin - popular and melodic Icelandic pop (but lots of English lyrics).
posted by mahorn at 8:43 PM on October 24, 2013

Anna Ternheim is Swedish (but performs in English). Of Monsters and Men are Icelandic (but perform in English). First Aid Kit are Swedish (but perform in English).
posted by Lexica at 9:15 PM on October 24, 2013

The Swede Wilhelm Stennhammar is one of my favorite little-known composers. I definitely hear the nordic-ness, if in a somewhat less outdoors-in-the-forest way than Sibelius. His Serenade is not vocal music but is pretty consummate.

He also wrote choral music like this, and songs like this.

Barbara Bonney has a nice album of songs by various Scandanavian composers; there are probably other similar compilations to be found.

And of course there are the 3 Swedish Tenors.
posted by bertran at 4:02 AM on October 25, 2013

There are TONS of Swedish indie-pop bands.
posted by mippy at 4:10 AM on October 25, 2013

Some Icelanders:

Asgeir Trausti
Prins Polo
Moses Hightower
Sykur (though they sometimes sing in English)
Snorri Helgason
posted by baseballpajamas at 11:25 AM on October 25, 2013

Response by poster: Awesome! I love the variety! classical, pop, rock, (dancehall?) dancehall!

Thanks everyone.
posted by vespabelle at 12:40 PM on October 25, 2013

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