Whoever claimed laughter is the only cure for grief did not know about music

Árstíðir – Dreikönigskirche, Dresden; September 22nd, 2014 

The Árstíðir concert in Dresden happened on one of those strange days that I’d rather erase from my memory – up until concert time that is. The magical power of their music put the smile back on my face and the beautiful sound at the Dreikönigskirche in Dresden left me in awe. But the looks of it, the same happened to everyone else who was there. The venue just calls for delicate music to be played and a-cappella songs to be sung. 🙂

It had been a strange day off between concerts, because while I had enjoyed spending a night in my own bed for a change, there was this sadness that I could not shake and it made me view everything in a negative light. On the long train ride to Dresden I momentarily lost it during a nice conversation with a fellow traveler (who followed a spiritual teacher all over the place), but it came crashing back down soon enough. I don’t like myself much when I’m in such a mood and it’s no good place to be in, much less alone. Thus, hoping the music would cure me, I asked the guys if it was OK for me to see the soundcheck. Luckily they agree and not only was I greeted with comforting hugs, but the healing powers of the music immediately took effect. I still felt sad, but nowhere near as bleak as I had the hours before. Some of the songs moved me to tears and it felt good letting all the emotions out.

Soon soundcheck was over and they were letting people into the venue. I got my camera ready, then had a little time to chat with the familiar people I met. The guys were a little late and the people in front row already contemplated clapping them out when they finally walked in. From then on it was a night of much music and little talk. Except for the song titles, they hardly said anything by way of introduction. There was the occasional “this is a new song” and some banter about the iPad setlist not always being the best thing, but less than that only ‘Shine’ and ‘Heyr himna smiður’ got a few words.

Either way, the songs spoke for themselves in this church and I hardly dared using my camera because the amazing acoustics carried any sound quite far. Luckily there are some more dramatic parts in the songs where the “click” of my DSLR’s mirror was drowned out. It was a good excuse for not taking all that many pictures. 😉

The band had shook up the setlist since the last concert, having rehearsed a few different songs on their day off. ‘Someone who cares’ moved to the beginning of the set, directly after ‘Heiðin’. It worked quite nicely in that spot. Shortly after, ‘Lost on you’ made an appearance. Slowly all the bad thoughts of the day left me, and the music took over. It moved me so much I was close to tear several times. Every song called out to me that night, everything was more beautiful than I had hoped for.

Especially the a cappella songs worked well with the reverb in the church and it made me happy they played four of them, all except one with Gilaumme. He got several solo parts too and a special introduction from Karl at one point. The first set ended with ‘Shades’ for which A. decided she could not sit down and came to stand next to me. IT sounded magnificent and when the last notes of the cello rang out, everyone was quiet for a little while. In fact, that happened for every song: People quietly waited to see if it was really the end and only started clapping after a brief pause.

The second set started with ‘Ró’ that had been rearranged to include four handed piano. Karl was sitting next to Ragnar for it and I enjoyed listening as much as I enjoyed watching them. Both versions work well for me. 😀 ‘You again’ was back as well and more beautiful than the first time around. Even ‘Heyr hymna smiður’ worked for me this time and was nothing short of amazing.

Too soon the second set was over and we called them back for encores. Before, Ragnar asked us for requests. I considered yelling out ‘Siðasta Kveðjan’, because it would have fit the location and my earlier mood so well, but I’m sure they would not have played it anyway. ‘Kill us’ took the crown though, it seemed tougher, tighter and more powerful than ever before. 🙂 The last encore was sung among the crowd as always and contained one English song I had not heard them do before and the final ‘Góða veislu gjöra skal’. I could have listened for some more hours, but it ended there. *sigh *

After the show I stuck around, but did not take much, just listened in. We learned that the version of ‘Ró’ on the album is a mixture of the old one and the one they played that night. It all ended in the same bar we had been to the previous year with drinks, stories, much laughter and a general good mood. Exactly what I needed. After a last hug goodbye, I found myself at my hotel, head buzzing with Caipirinha and good memories. 🙂

Setlist not quite sure this is correct

Someone who cares
Orð að eigin vali
Lost in you
A medan jördin sefur
Land mins föður

You just have to know of me
Heyr hymna smiður
Days & Nights
You again
Nú gleymist ég

Ljoð í sand
Kill us
Góða veislu gjöra skal

pictures of tis concert

Árstíðir Germany Tour 2014: 3 concerts down, 7 to go. Next stop: Erlangen

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