Song of the 2. Week: Ampop with the song "Sail to the moon"
Ampop is a pop electronica duet from Reykjavik, founded by Birgir Hilmarsson (1978) and Kjartan F. Ólafsson (1979). Having known each other since they were eight years old, the idea of collaborating on music didn’t appear until 1998 when Ampop was founded. Previously Birgir had been a singer and guitarist of several rock bands, but was developing a huge interest in electronic music, which lead him to approach Kjartan with the idea of collaborating on a project. Until then Kjartan had been making an extremely introverted musical career, writing instrumental electronic music but with no sounds reaching further than the walls of his bedroom.
Ampop’s first release was a couple of months after the founding of the band, two tracks on a various artist compilation CD called Flugan (i.e.The Fly), released by Error (R&R) Musik. The first track the band wrote together was the track that gave Ampop its name (simply being a mixture of the words Ambient and Pop). The track combined a pounding trip hop beat with ambient tones and Birgir’s tenor voice and was evident of the style of the music Ampop were about to develop.
Two years later their debut album called "Nature is not a virgin" was released by Error (R&R) Musik.
In 2002 Skífan in Iceland has distributed their second album called “Made for Market” exclusively.
The title track "Made for Market" had earlier in 2002 been released as a 7" single on the highly respected Birmingham based label, Static Caravan and received great reviews and comments such as “It's music of genuine, graceful wonder, like múm engineered by pole while Björk nods her seal of approval in the background”.
On stage several talents assist Ampop. Thorsteinn (a.k.a. Prince Valium) adds synth sounds to the mix, along with Nói who plays the drums and guitars, and sometimes Olafur Josephson (a.k.a. Stafrænn Hákon) adds his wonderful guitar textures too.
Ampop’s influences are among others: Future Sound of London, Joy Division, Portishead, Depeche Mode, Brian Eno, David Sylvian, Kraftwerk and Cabaret Voltaire.