Retro Stefson Album Review

Icelandic alternative pop band Retro Stefson present their eponymous debut UK album release. Their self-titled debut will be released on 25 March through Les Freres Stefson.

Retro Stefson are already an award winning, gold disc holding and chart-topping band in their home country of Iceland. Last week saw the band win three Icelandic Music Awards for Best Song, Best Video and Best Performers alongside eight nominations. Their single Glow has just started to be aired on the radio in the UK with 6music and XFM playing the track frequently. Glow spent some time at the top of the Icelandic charts and may be set to do the same in the UK charts.

Now Retro Stefson are preparing for their debut UK album release. The album release will be accompanied by a show at The Lexington in London on 25 March. Retro Stefson is fronted by brothers Unnsteinn and Logi Stefánsson who have been making music since they were 16 – a fact that goes some way to explain how a band quite so young sounds so mature. Retro Stefson’s new found seven piece line-up sees the band gain a whole new dynamic.

Their self-titled release is astonishingly pop but in a surprisingly good way. Blending influences from dance, pop and indie while also including some Latino styles and funk influences, Retro Stefson have created a debut album that will instantly grab your attention and keep it.

Retro Stefson

Retro Stefson promo shot

Introductory track Solaris leads you softly into an album that has much more tempo later on. Second track is the familiar Glow that is unabashedly catchy and whose video also doubles as a tour of Reykjavik by bicycle. Next are the best three tracks on the album; Qween, Miss Nobody and (O) Kami.

Qween begins as a dance number with a sound that is familiar to chart-topping artists like Neyo. However, this is pop done in the Icelandic way so do not be disheartened by this comparison. The harmonies, the call and response lyrics and the overall beat to this track makes it a song that stays in your head and nothing will make it leave. The verses and chorus are incredibly catchy both lyrically and musically. This is a song that will have your feet tapping instantly.

Miss Nobody is the ultimate song on the record. It’s less of a dance number with more influences seeping through from the indie genre. The best part is the heavier rock guitar riff after the second verse. This is a world away from the rest of the album which is what makes it so awesome. The whole song is a mix of dance, pop, rock and indie. The chorus, “Miss nobody since you’ve got nobody to talk to” is simple yet effective due to the music that surrounds it. It’s an all round amazing track with no faults.

(O) Kami is another mash up of a track with influences seeping in from everywhere. The guitar riff has an Indian style to it after the first verse while the drum beat and bass remain unashamedly linked to the style of reggae.  This all makes it an interesting track to listen to, there’s loads of layers which is what makes this seven piece line-up so essential.

Retro Stefson are said to be one of the most diverse and breath-taking bands to see live. With their show at The Lexington later this month already being sold out, it seems Retro Stefson are quickly becoming a favourite live act in the UK. On top of this, they are a pop band who can actually play their own instruments. Everyone in the line-up brings something that’s essential to make this band what it is. Their self-titled debut will blow you away, guaranteed.

In support of the album release, the band will be touring extensively in Europe over the next few months. The tour dates are below. More dates are to be added shortly.

MARCH
25 – Lexington – London, United Kingdom

26 – The Hope – Brighton, UK
28 – Gare Du Lion – Wil, Switzerland
29 – Stall 6 – Zurich, Switzerland
30 – Selig – Chur, Switzerland
31 – Kaserne – Basel, Switzerland
APRIL
02 – E-Werk – Erlangen, Germany
03 – Karlstorbahnhof – Heidelberg, Germany
05 – Keller Klub – Stuttgart, Germany
06 – Motel Mozaïque – Rotterdam, Netherlands
07 – FZW – Dortmund, Germany
10 – Espace B – Paris, France
11 – La Péniche – Lille, France
12 – Popsalon Club Festival – Osnabruck, Germany
13 – SCHLACHTHOF – Wiesbaden, Germany
14 – Strom – Munchen, Germany
16 – Haus 73 – Hamburg, Germany
17 – Vega – Copenhagen, Denmark
19 – Bi Nuu – Berlin, Germany
20 – Filmfest – Dresden, Germany
23 – Glashaus – Bayreuth, Germany
26 – Stadtpalast – Rostock, Germany
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