Award winning Icelandic composer and musician Gyda Valtysdottir has been very busy; after forming the band mum last year, Gyda has won the Nordic Council Music Prize, and is about to release a new album “Epicycle II” later this summer.
On July 3, she will release the first single from the album “Evol Lamina” which was written by Gyda and Sigor Ros’ Jonsi. The single will be available through all digital services.
Jonsi, who also mixed the new album, is not the only Icelandic artist who appears on the album, she has collaborated with eight of the nation’s composers – Ólöf Arnalds, Daníel Bjarnason, Úlfur Hansson, Jónsi, María Huld Markan Sigfúsdóttir, Kjartan Sveinsson, Skúli Sverrisson, and Anna Thorvaldsdóttir.
“Epicycle II” is the follow up to her 2017 debut solo album “Epicycle” which was created from music pieces over the past 2,000 years.
An epicycle is a geometric model of the solar system created by Greek mathematician and astronomer Ptolemy. The model is similar to an orbit in that a smaller circle orbits a larger circle.
Like Sigor Ros, Gyda also pushes the boundaries of traditional musical genres to create a unique sound. The opening track of the album “Unfold” brings with it images of space, the stars, planets. Fans of Jonsi and Sigor Ros will feel at home with “Epicycle II”.
Gyda spoke on her choice of songs for the new album saying, “when the idea of ‘Epicycle II’ came to me, it felt like it already existed. On the first Epicycle, I interpreted music by composers from the past. This time I wanted to collaborate with contemporary composers and musicians who have each created their own, unique musical language that doesn’t fall easily into any existing category. It became clear to me that I didn’t have to look far to find exquisite musicians all around me and soon I had a list of people who I greatly admire – people who had all shaped me in some way as a musician. I also happened to know all of them since I started making music in my teens. Our world is interconnected and I wouldn’t be who I am without my relation to others, including the people that contributed to this record. This group of people is really a musical galaxy, where the connections are endless: From Kjartan producing Ólöf’s first record, which Daníel made some string arrangements for, to Úlfur touring as a bass player for Jónsi’s solo tour and María’s long collaboration with Jónsi and Kjartan … or from Daníel conducting Anna’s compositions, as well as joining Sigur Rós for their orchestra concerts, to Kjartan and Skúli soon releasing a duo album, and much more.”
feature photo credit: Gyda’s Facebook page