In these strange times we all long for nice concerts and festivals, to ease this hunger Skálmöld released a live album. There isn’t a lot we haven’t asked this guys over the past years, but to be sure they’re all OK we had a little chat with Baldur.
Hi guys, to get straight to the point, when I got to see you guys 11 years ago in Oberhausen, Germany, I was stunned by your performance. As an opener on Heidenfest you expect to see a starting band which is searching for the right moves and such on a podium. You guys were just there, performing a set which was solid as a rock. You seem to do this every time, every album, the first gigs the concert with the symphonic orchestra, everything is tight and solid. How do you manage that?
“We really enjoy playing concerts, it is one of the most fun things I do in life. Our music tends to be a bit complicated at times but I really don’t want to be focusing on the playing while doing a concert, I enjoy connecting with the crowd more and enjoying the whole thing. So what I do is I practice the songs until they’re in my blood, I practice until I know them so well that I don’t have to focus on what I’m doing. If I succeed I can focus on the crowd and listening to what my band members are doing and try to make each gig tighter than the last.”
You guys released a live album about two weeks ago. Thank you for sharing the music of this nice gig with us. Nice to hear the songs played live, it brings back good memories. There seemed to be some hiccups during the period before the release. It didn’t seem like an easy process, what went wrong?
“Sometimes things just take a little bit more time then was planned, one thing in production goes wrong and then everything gets delayed. But it’s out now and we love it!”
Can we expect another studio album too?
“To be honest I have no idea. We’re still enjoying some time off and after the break we’ll sit down a see what we want to do.”
How does the songwriting process work in Skálmöld?
“My brother Snæbjörn gets an idea, sometimes fully developed and sometimes a rough one. When the idea is fully polished we start working on the music, usually the song titles are ready before we start making the songs and sometimes we take a song a certain way because of where we are in the concept. And then we just mix all of our ideas into songs. The Snæbjörn writes the lyrics, that happens last.”
What has changed for you guys during the past ten years and do you feel the music has changed too?
“I fell like the music has changed a bit but not because of us changing that much, more to keep us interested. I feel like we’ve just become better friends. No one in Skálmöld takes it for granted. Being able to travel the world, playing our music is a privilege and as long as we don’t forget that I think we’ll be good. But after ten busy years we were getting a bit tired and then we just took a break, there isn’t really any drama in Skálmöld. Well not yet anyway.”
Covid has grabbed the whole world, how is Iceland and Skálmöld doing during this pandemic?
“We’re doing good compared to many other places in the world. We are having a third wave of the pandemic over here and there are some restrictions but I feel like it’s going to be OK. Still people are getting quite tired and I understand that, I just hope people don’t start to do stupid thing and remember why we have to do this. Skálmöld is fine, we decided to take the whole year of 2020 off. Probably the best timed break in the history of music.”
You have done such nice things over the past ten years, do you have anything special on your whish-list?
“Sure. I would like to do concerts in South and Central-America, Australia, Japan and well just basically in more places that we haven’t visited. I love travelling and playing my music and meeting new people, so I would like to do more of that.”
Anything else you like to share with our readers?
“Just stay safe, don’t make huge decisions on a bad day and we’ll see you on the other side of the plague!”