Also hear "Only the Winds" and watch Lil Buck jook to an Arnalds jam on 'Colbert Report'
Icelandic composer Ólafur Arnalds has a gentle touch to often massively emotive results. While last year's Another Happy Day score was merely a pleasant drifter, his melancholic 2010 opus ...And They Have Escaped the Weight of Darkness was a cinematic-feeling feat, and his forthcoming For Now I Am Winter LP looks to reprise that greatness. With strings arranged by Nico Muhly (Usher, Passion Pit, Antony Hegarty, Grizzly Bear) and the introduction of vocals for the first time (Arnór Dan), it's no wonder a song like "Old Skin" feels as resonant as anything Arnalds has done. With piano, strings and beats, the song evolves from pensive to joyous to melancholy.
Meanwhile, in the above video for the piece, a lonesome lighthouse keeper tends to his shore. But every time he looks into bubbles (sea foam, coffee froth, bath water) the aging fellow gets a glimpse at another world where young people are unabashedly dancing amidst a spray of soap suds. The old man's had enough of his sea — he's ready to rave. Arnalds told Paste that the clip was inspired by the idea of combining high brow and low brow. "We didn’t want to go the standard ‘Icelandic nature’ style, he said, "although we do sort of start with that, but it takes a complete U-turn in the middle."
Enjoy that video above, then check out another gently swelling track from the LP, "Only the Winds," and watch Memphis jookin' star Lil Buck dance to an Arnalds piece on The Colbert Report.
Ólafur Arnalds, For Now I Am Winter track list:
1. "Sudden Throw"
3. "For Now I Am Winter"
4. "A Stutter"
5. "Words of Amber"
7. "Hands, Be Still"
8. "Only the Winds"
9. "Old Skin"
10. "We (Too) Shall Rest"
11. "This Place Was a Shelter"
12. "Carry Me Anew"