sounds of merry making
  1. Feast
  2. Free from Love
  3. Demons
  4. Animals
  5. The Rug
  6. Psyched Fish
  7. My Bones are Legend
  8. Ferment


After a 5-year hiatus Skakkamanage (a nickname going back to the frontman’s childhood) is finally back on track with 8 songs. “Sounds of Merrymaking” is the third brainchild of Svavar, Berglind & Co. The record is released on the band’s label Skakkapopp, just like the previous 2 albums “Lab of Love” (2006) and “All Over The Face” (2008). The producer and engineer on duty is múm’s Gunnar Örn Tynes. On this rather short longplayer, just around 30 minutes, the voice of Prinspóló Svavar Pétur Eysteinsson (of Rúnk fame), brings in mind late vocalist Ian Curtis. Contrary to what the title of the LP may suggest, it’s no picnic music at all. It is a rather dark indie rock album, influenced by the upcoming new wave of the late 70s and early 80s. Some of the tracks, “Free from Love”, “Demons”, “Animals”, are resurrections of Joy Division, The Cure and even The Fall. Fortunately Skakkamanage puts it in a lo-fi and garage jacket. Begga’s female touch leaves a pleasant echo, a white shadow and featherlight footprint into the darklands of Weltschmerz, depression, darkness, sadness, posttraumatic stress, and doom. My favorite tracks are the catch of the day, “Psyched Fish”, and “My Bones are Legend”, both drowned in a welcome to the eighties sound. The threatening guitar in “Demons” is magnificent. In conclusion I would compare this Skakkamanage album with a young Prinspóló, who went slamdancing dressed in a black polo in a cold forest, without Northern Lights but under a killing moon.

- Wim Van Hooste