Skálmöld

So, answer this question: which head of state needs a dose of metal to get him ready for Parliament every morning – and which band’s music does he play to give him the necessary adrenaline surge?
It’s Iceland’s President Guðni Jóhannesson, of course, whose love of his country’s biggest metal band Skálmöld led him to say in 2018: “I admire them because they’re much more than just a metal band. For me, the most admirable aspects of Skálmöld’s songs are their lyrical themes. Here in Iceland, we want to maintain our literary and cultural heritage, and to do that we need to make it accessible to new generations.  Skálmöld are a link between our old heritage and today’s culture!” Can you imagine Donald Trump saying the same thing about Metallica, or Angela Merkel laying similar praise at Rammstein’s feet? Of course not – which says a lot about the appeal of this band of Vikings. You don’t need to take the word of the President, though; the facts speak for themselves. Skálmöld – which translates as ‘Age Of Swords’ – formed in the summer of 2009 and comprise Björgvin Sigurðsson (vocals, guitar), Þráinn Árni Baldvinsson (guitar), Baldur Ragnarsson (guitar), Snæbjörn Ragnarsson (bass), Gunnar Ben (keyboards) and Jón Geir Jóhannsson (drums).

Their debut album Baldur was released the following year and made an instant impact, even on a metal scene saturated with Viking-themed albums. The reasons for this are obvious; Snæbjörn Ragnarsson’s lyrics stick closely to the poetic rules of the ancient Icelandic sagas, where every syllable is considered and internal rhyme is paramount. The Icelandic public were reeling at the time from two major crises – remember the collapse of their entire banking system, and the volcanic eruption that stopped air traffic across half of Europe? In this climate, a band such as Skálmöld, who celebrated the very essence of their domestic culture, were destined for instant glory – and so it proved to be. A decade later, with three more albums under their bullet belts – Börn Loka (2012), Með Vættum (2014) and Vögguvísur Yggdrasils (2016) – Skálmöld have taken a huge step forward with their fifth album, Sorgir, out on Napalm Records on October 12. The new songs range from the all-out thrash metal assault of ‘Brunin’, the sinister, melodic power of ‘Skotta’ and the classically-influenced ‘Mara’ – the last of these coming as no surprise, given that the band played four dates in August alongside the Iceland Symphony Orchestra at the immense, iconic concert hall Harpa in Reykjavik.

Again, which other band can say the same? Skálmöld are one of a kind. Miss them at your peril!
Joel McIver, 2018

Line-Up

Baldur Ragnarsson – Guitar

Björgvin Sigurðsson – Vocals / Guitar

Gunnar Ben – Keyboards

Jón Geir Jóhannsson – Drums

Snæbjörn Ragnarsson – Bass

Þráinn Árni Baldvinsson – Guitar

Discography

2018 – Sorgir

2016 – Vögguvísur Yggdrasils

2014 – Með vættum

2013 – Skálmöld & Sinfóníuhljómsveit Íslands (CD/DVD)

2012 – Börn Loka

2010 – Baldur

Media

Links

Youtube




Tourdates

 
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Skalstorm European Tour MMXVIII – supporting Alestorm
25.11.2018 HU Debrecen Lovarda BUY TICKETS
26.11.2018 RO Cluj From Space BUY TICKETS
27.11.2018 RO Bucharest Quantic Club BUY TICKETS
28.11.2018 RS Belgrade Dom Omladine BUY TICKETS
29.11.2018 SI Bohinj Winter Days of Metal BUY TICKETS
30.11.2018 IT Retorbibo Dagda Club BUY TICKETS
01.12.2018 IT Rome Orion Live Club BUY TICKETS
02.12.2018 IT Florenz Cycle BUY TICKETS
03.12.2018 IT Bologna Alchemica BUY TICKETS
04.12.2018 HR Zagreb Tvornica BUY TICKETS
05.12.2018 AT Graz Dom im Berg BUY TICKETS
07.12.2018 DE Geiselwind Christmas Bash BUY TICKETS
08.12.2018 DE Oberhausen Ruhrpott Metal Meeting BUY TICKETS
09.12.2018 FR Limoges CC John Lennon BUY TICKETS
10.12.2018 ES Bilbao Santana 27 BUY TICKETS
11.12.2018 ES Santiago D.C. Capitol BUY TICKETS
12.12.2018 PT Lisbon Capitolio BUY TICKETS
13.12.2018 ES ES – Sevilla Sala X BUY TICKETS
14.12.2018 ES Salamanca Camelot BUY TICKETS
15.12.2018 ES Madrid Sala Mon BUY TICKETS
16.12.2018 ES Barcelona Razzmatazz BUY TICKETS