Lee’s Palace Presents
Hollywood screenwriters couldn’t have scripted the musical ascent of Icelandic phenom Ásgeir any better. Dýrð í dauðaþögn, an album the 21-year-old recorded just for fun, became an overnight sensation in his home country. Buoyed by haunting, shimmering folktronica textures—and driven by lyrics penned by his dad, a retired school principal—the record became the best-selling debut record ever in Iceland, beating out even superstars such as Björk and Sigur Rós.
Still, the fairy tale didn’t end there. The ubiquity of Dýrð í dauðaþögn caught the attention of musician John Grant, and the one-time Midlake collaborator immediately recognized Ásgeir’s musical talent. “He has a knack for melody and gorgeous harmonies, coupled with an amazing sense of rhythm and virtuosity on acoustic guitar,” Grant says. However, he also saw plenty of beauty in the album’s lyrics—a poetic collection touching on things such as nature, fantastical creatures, weather and old short stories—and ended up translating them into English for the international version of the album, titled In The Silence.