Friendly atmosphere, good stories and happiness

Árstíðir – Room 41 / Dürer Kert, Budapest; February 10th, 2019

Almost three years after I’d last seen Árstíðir in Budapest I was back, once again at a different venue. I’d only seen them in Budapest two times, but it felt more often, because I have such great memories of the City and the concerts there. For sure this was a concert I did not want to miss and when it was over I knew was right about it. The concert was a brilliant one with great Sound, great lights and a great audience too. I loved it from start to finish.

Traveling from Antwerp to Budapest on a Sunday was somewhat complicated. At first I thought it wasn’t doable at all, but in the end I found a way. It just meant being on a bus at 4 am and having to wait three hours at Charleroi Airport. I made it to Budapest in the ealy afternoon and the first thig I did was sleep. It was a good choice and I felt refreshed after. Next I got Food and then it was already time to head for the venue. It wa much bigger than I expected with several halls and at least one other concert going on at the same time.

While waiting I heard a lot of the soundcheck, before they told me to wait further away and said hello to Christoph their tour Manager/Driver/merch seller. Later, when a line alreday had formed Guillaume and Ragnar walked by so we exchanged quick hellos and a hug. Doors opened half an hour late, but since we waited inside it didn’t matter. They played in room 41, a nice small hall that filled up slowly. I talked to the People around me and learned that they had a gig at a café in Budapest the previous day. Wait, what? They were supposed to play in Ljubljana. Turns out that concert had been cancelled short notice and thy went to Budapest early. It must have been a wonderful gig too, all unplugged. 🙂 Either way, I was very relieved that I had decided to stick with my original plan and seen Joan Baez and not planed to go to Slovenia instead. That would have been a disaster. Before they started, I found A., whom I had not seen in the Queue eralier and brought her to the front with me.

Neither of us knew when the show was supposed to start and at 8:30 Árstíðir finally walked out. Ragnar asked how everyone had been in the two months since the last show in December or since yesterday and remarked how they loved coming to Budapest. ‘While this Way’ was brilliant already and I was singing along right away. So was A. to my left and the girl we’d been talking too earlier as well. This was a great start and the sound was damn good too. <3 I don’t know how much more I can say about their wonderful songs. I loved them all that night and found myself swaying to the music with my eyes closed a lot. Either that or I was fascinated by the lights, drawing patterns on the floor and bathed the band in different colors.

As usual I stood in a spot where I could not see everyone. It seems I always have to decide if I want to see Guillaume or Jean-Samuel, because I can never see both of them. Or at least I have not yet found a spot from where that is possible. 😉 Thus, I switched positions from time to time to take pictures and people always let me do it easily. <3 The atmosphere was really friendly at this gig. Everyone was just enjoying the music and having a good time.

One of my favorites that night was ‘In the Wake of You” – I loved it ever since I first heard it, but then it was just a nice song, while I can very much relate to it now. It doesn’t make me sad though, but instead puts a smile on my face. I loved every song though. By now I know the setlist by heart and can concentrate on the little details that change from one evening to the next. The songs still evolve little by little and the guys try out new things from time to time. Also the stories they tell, while essentially the same, always change at least a little during any given tour.<3

Soon it was time for the break already and they came back shortly after. The acoustic set is one of the best parts of the show for me and while I still hope they’ll change songs somewhere on this tour, I enjoy the two they are playing now very much. They work perfectly in this setup and ‘Sunday Morning’ is a song I have always loved anyway. Afterwards they mentioned how they had played their full set like that yesterday and it was like during the time they started making music, sitting on Daníel’s couch. He added that he’d been brewing red wine at that time which was horrible, but they drank it anyway. 😉

Before ‘Like Snow’ Ragnar told us how nice it is to  have metaphors to use in songs. Then Gunnar started the backing track for the song on the computer, but hit the wrong buttons and made a joke about it. 😀 It didn’t take anything away from the lovely song. <3 Again they challenged us to pronounce ‘Friðþægingin’ correctly and even promised two beers for it. 😉 When introducing ‘Himinhvel’ Gunnar talked about Toppstöðin and how dear it has become to them and how they miss it when they are on tour. At the beginning of ‘Things You Said’ Daníel noticed that his guitar had no sound, but it worked again soon after. He was a bit worried, but I never noticed any problems after it.

This time it was clear the wanted to play an encore, at least to me, while the last time I had wondered if the’d settle for not doing one. Either way, ‘Passion’ was first, with the introduction that we all do best what we are passionate about. It is still a perfect song to end the show with. Yet when they heard it was the last song, people said “awww” so loudly that I knew the band would come back out this time and they did. We got ‘Góda veslu göra skal’ and finally ‘Nú gleymist ég’ – a party song and a really depressing one, as Ragnar put it. 🙂 Before the final song Gunnar told us how the actually don’t take themselves seriously and we should come meet them after the show. Of course!

After this great night, I really wanted a drink, but there was no bar in the room and I decided it was too far to walk. Thus I stayed and chatted with all of the guys a little bit. I heard the story about the cancelled show the previous day and how they’d played in a café, I witnessed someone trying to say ‘Friðþægingin’ and doing it so well he almost won two beer, I told them about my tour plans and let them know that the short guitar malfunction wasn’t as bad as the thought.Finally I said goodbye to everyone and left with A. and A. who’d been waiting for me. Soon, our paths separated though. See you again next time!

pictures of this concert


While this Way
Please Help me
Vetur að vori
Ljóð í sand
In the Wake of You
Þar sem enginn fer

acoustic set:
Sunday Morning
Kill Us

Like Snow
Things You Said

Góda veslu göra skal
Nú gleymist ég

Nivalis winter tour: 8 gigs down, 9 to go. Next stop: St.Gallen

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