Árstíðir – Opderschmelz, Dudelange; November 14th, 2023
Árstíðir’s show in Dudelange / Luxembourg took place at a lovely venue and was really nice overall, but I was a bit too distracted to enjoy it fully, being worried about how to get to the next two shows. I still was happy to be there and get to listen to beautiful music.
Luxembourg was one of the longest trips on this tour and I had a comparably early start. With the usual delays I didn’t have all that much time eft to relax at my hotel, before I had to leave again. I was raining a lot, but luckily the venue was inside a culture house, so I could wait where it was dry. 🙂
When he doors opened there were only four people, but luckily the venue filled up some more. There were sofas set up as well as tables with seats so I sat on a sofa in front. Just as I had settled down, I received a news alert that German railways would be on strike from 10 pm Wednesday to 6 pm Thursday. It was Tuesday evening now and my original plan hat been to go straight to Cologne, travel home after the concert and go to Hamburg from Dortmund the next day. Now there was no way I was going to get home to Dortmund after the show so everything had to be rearranged. Thus, I spent the waiting time researching alternatives and wasn’t helped by the shitty Internet connection at the venue. Before the show stated I knew I had to options: Leave really early in the morning, get to Dortmund, pack for the rest of the tour, spend the night in Cologne and figure out ow to get from there to Hamburg or skip Cologne altogether and try to get to Hamburg from Dortmund. Neither was great and left my head spinning.
When the band stepped on stage and started with ‘Himinhvel’, my head was still elsewhere and while I realized that the sound was good, everything else sort of went past me. The same was the case with ‘Ljóð í sand’. I concentrated on taking pictures and even though the stage lights were challenging, because they were mostly monochromatic and often switched between very bright and very dark, I liked trying to capture the mood.
Daníel introduced the band and since it was the first time they were playing there, he asked if anyone had seen them before – there were a few. He spoke about ‘Bringing back the feel’ as “the anthem of their songwriting”. They had a wrong start which made me laugh and then I realized the song was exactly what I needed to finally get into concert mood – it brought back the feel! ‘Later on’ was also very fitting, because I had “the need to know, the need to know, the need to know” how I was going to get to the next two shows. 🙂 Perfect song was perfect.
Ragnar talked about how they had never played in Luxembourg before and should have maybe come here earlier. ‘Sanity’ was great, but it seemed to me his voice sounded a little strained. Was going to ask him about it after the show, but never got around to it. ‘Figure’ keeps on getting better and ‘Nú gleymist ég’ is always fantastic.
Ragnar asked how many people spoke Icelandic and a few hands went up. Someone said “not yet”, which he declared a good answer. Daníel asked about Icelanders in Luxembourg working there and revealed that he had lived there in 2000 and worked at Britania Pub – that lead to loud cheers. Thus, the next song was dedicated to said pub and declared “a love song that takes place at a pub in Luxembourg” and here I was thinking, ‘Lover’ was just a fantasy. 😉
Gunnar introduced ‘Þar sem enginn fer’, telling us we were supposed to pictured a trip through the Westfjords of Iceland where you have mountains on one side of the road and the fjord on the other, but not much else. It was wonderful and at one point I had the feeling, Dani was playing it a little differently than usual. The picking somehow stood out more. Could be it was just the first time I noticed his picking. Either way, I loved it.
After the break, Raggi talked about their sister albums Pendúll and Blik and how they were going to play two songs from the all Icelandic album now. ‘Glitsky’ was played as a trio and they got Guillaume and Jen-Samuel back on stage for ‘Hvenar kemur sól’. Both songs were beautiful. They went straight into ‘While this Way’ from there and continued with ‘Mute’. Gunnar said a few words about the song while Ragnar played the melody on piano.
‘Friðþægingin’ was still in the set and Daníel declared it Árstíðir’s Rock ‘n’ Roll song. It rocks for sure. Raggi added it was the only song that made him want to play air violin. And here I thought it was an air cello. 😉 They continued with more Blik songs – ‘Home’, ‘Kirin’ and ‘A new Tomorrow’. The last one was again introduced as a fairy tale, because Dani didn’t want to say anything more about it. 😀 ‘Shades’ was brilliant and people were happy with it so much they gave standing ovations and shouted “Meira, Meira” (more in Icelandic).
The guys happily came back and played their encore of ‘Kill us’ as a trie before giving the final word to the string players with ‘Things you said’. It was a lovely show overall and by the end I really enjoyed it.
Talked to Raggi afterwards that I didn’t know yet how to get to the next two shows, but would manage, spoke to Gunni and Guillaume briefly, then left to get at least some sleep before traveling. I was determined to get to Cologne and Hamburg, soI needed to travel early.
Ljóð í sand
Bringing back the Feel
Nú gleymist ég
Þar sem enginn fer
Hvenar kemur sól
While this Way
A new Tomorrow
Things you said